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Distinguished Innovator Awards in Lupus and Autoimmunity
The Lupus Research Alliance (LRA) is the world’s leading private funder of lupus research. The organization’s mission is to improve treatments for lupus while advancing towards a cure through the support for research. At present, therapy for lupus is empiric and involves a variety of mostly non-specific anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive agents. While these treatments are frequently beneficial, many patients do not respond adequately and suffer significant side effects including organ damage. Importantly, many unanswered questions regarding the pathogenesis of lupus remain and new conceptual and therapeutic approaches are urgently needed.
To address these critical knowledge gaps and to markedly advance lupus research, the Lupus Research Alliance established the Distinguished Innovator Award (DIA). This grant mechanism is intended to attract exceptionally creative scientists from all relevant scientific disciplines and to provide them with a robust and sustained support to explore bold and paradigm shifting ideas that could lead to ground-breaking discoveries in lupus research. Investigators working in areas outside of lupus are strongly encouraged to apply.
The DIA provides outstanding scientists with substantial support (up to $250,000 per year for up to four years) to conduct novel research into the fundamental causes of systemic lupus erythematosus and so provide new directions towards a cure. The LRA welcomes novel hypothesis- or discovery-driven proposals using clinically relevant models in lupus research. Proposals must aim to uncover the fundamental causes of lupus and present a compelling vision of how the discovery could lay the groundwork for a cure, prevention, or highly effective therapy.
Applications will be judged primarily on the novelty and potential of the research proposal, with particular emphasis on the rationale for the hypothesis and the supporting preliminary data and on the track record of the investigator. Continuations of long-term research projects will not be considered.
Successful applicants will be outstanding investigators who have demonstrated creativity and productivity in their field of research. We encourage applications from investigators in diverse disciplines including, but not limited to, immunology, genetics, and molecular, cell, and systems biology.
Letter of Intent Due Date: Feb. 6, 2023
Applicants must hold a faculty position, at the assistant professor level or above, at an academic institution. The Lupus Research Alliance does not impose geographic restriction on its applicants and researchers working outside of the US are also encouraged to apply.
Restriction on Number of Applications: Only one LOI will be accepted per principal investigator in a grant cycle.