Biological Technologies Office -- Insect Allies

Funding Agency:
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency

This publication constitutes a Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) as contemplated in Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 6.102(d)(2) and 35.016 and 2 CFR § 200.203. Any resultant award negotiations will follow all pertinent law and regulation, and any negotiations and/or awards for procurement contracts will use procedures under FAR 15.4, Contract Pricing, as specified in the BAA. 

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is soliciting innovative research proposals that enable expression of crop traits within a single growing season at scale by delivering a modified virus to target plants by a mobile insect vector; thereby addressing national security challenges in agriculture domestically and abroad. Respondents to this BAA must propose novel approaches to modify an insect-transmitted virus to confer traits to a crop of agricultural value by means of a host-specific vector. 


o Proposal Abstract Due Date – December 6, 2016

o Proposal Due Date/BAA Closing Date – January 17, 2017

Agency Website

Areas of Interest

The Insect Allies program consists of three Technical Areas (TAs) to be addressed concurrently. Proposers must address all three TAs and must meet key milestones throughout the period of performance.

• TA1: Engineered plant virus (“Virus”)

• TA2: Viral delivery by insect vector (“Insect”)

• TA3: Rapid mature plant transformation (“Plant”) 

Funding Type





Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences

External Deadline

January 17, 2017