Duke MSK Research Scholars Program [For Duke Faculty Only]

Funding Agency:
Duke University

Duke Musculoskeletal (MSK) research is a transdisciplinary effort that promotes excellence and innovation in clinical research (CR) and health services research (HSR). Duke MSK aims to serve as a University wide hub for education, research, mentorship, and resources to enable trainees and faculty to ask and answer questions with direct translational relevance to musculoskeletal clinical research, patient care, safety, costs, patient outcomes, and quality improvement.

CR is the branch of health care that improves diagnostic and/or prognostic capabilities or determines the safety, efficacy, and/or effectiveness in treatments intended for human use. HSR is the branch of population health science that addresses how patient care is organized, financed, and delivered. Innovations through CR and/or HSR can facilitate optimal health care delivery at the level of the individual patient, population, and health system.

The Duke MSK Research Scholars Program provides funding of up to $20,000 per project for 12 months to catalyze investigations of key CR or HSR questions in high priority areas for musculoskeletal research, identified below:
• Predicting and preventing transition from acute to chronic pain
• Determining efficacy and effectiveness of non-pharmacological treatments for pain
• Improving understanding of healthcare provider’s role in patient management
• Establishing optimal care pathways for common conditions
• Identifying mechanisms of persistent pain and physical function decline in older adults
• Developing assessment tools that enhance clinical decision making
• Enhancing post-operative outcomes
• Etiology of musculoskeletal conditions that frequently lead to surgical intervention

The goals of the Duke MSK Research Scholars Program are to 1) foster new collaborations among Duke researchers, 2) support research teams in obtaining preliminary data that will be used to apply for larger awards, and 3) provide opportunities for mentoring and training for junior faculty, residents and graduate students.

Applicants will be expected to have as part of their collaborative team 1) Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, or Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI), 2) biostatistical support resources and 3) faculty members with relevant expertise in musculoskeletal disorders, conditions, or pain.

Full RFA

Deadline: Aug. 2, 2019

Eligibility Requirements

The Principal Investigator (PI) must be at the regular rank Assistant, Associate, or Professor level at Duke University. The PI must partner with at least one co-Investigator from Duke Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Duke Center for Geriatric Surgery, or the DCRI. PIs are highly encouraged to collaborate early with biostatisticians regarding project development. Preference will be given to applications led by junior faculty members and applications that include trainees.



Amount Description

Each award will consist of up to $20,000 (direct costs only; see budget guidelines) with an expected start date of October 1, 2019 and ending no later than September 30, 2020. One award will be funded during this award cycle. Requests for no-cost extensions will not be approved. DCGS Scholars awardees will each collaborate with a faculty member from the DCGS Steering Committee, who will facilitate access to DCGS resources and serve as a key contact person for the program.

Funding Type



Junior Faculty


Medical - Clinical Science

External Deadline

August 2, 2019