Sponsor Deadline
Posted: 4/18/2022

Request for Proposals: Ann Theodore Foundation Breakthrough Sarcoidosis Initiative

The Ann Theodore Foundation is launching a new scientific program focused on funding sarcoidosis research in partnership with the Milken Institute Center for Strategic Philanthropy.

The Milken Institute is now accepting applications for research projects up to two years in length that seek to understand the biology of sarcoidosis and increase our understanding of the genetic, molecular, and immunological aspects of the disease.

The Ann Theodore Foundation Breakthrough Sarcoidosis Initiative (ATF-BSI) intends to award four to six two-year research grants led by doctorate-level investigators at qualifying research-based institutions in the US. Projects led by individual researchers will be eligible for up to US$200,000 in funding for direct costs per year plus 15 percent in indirect costs, totaling $230,000 per year. Interdisciplinary teams comprised of a sarcoidosis expert and a researcher from a separate field relevant to the project will be eligible for up to $250,000 in funding for direct costs per year plus 15 percent in indirect costs, totaling $287,500 per year. Funded investigators will be able to apply for a third year of funding.

Sarcoidosis is a disease that is hallmarked by clusters of immune cells, known as granulomas, forming in various organs throughout the body. Sarcoidosis usually affects the lungs, but virtually any organ can be impacted. In some cases, it resolves spontaneously, but for others it can be a chronic debilitating condition. The symptoms can include difficulty breathing, fatigue, and arrythmia, and if the granulomas persist, they can cause severe organ damage and death Approximately 1 in 2,000 people in the US is affected by sarcoidosis; however, it impacts African American women at higher rates than other demographics. While sarcoidosis is often considered a rare disease, its true prevalence may be higher due to underdiagnosis and a lack of awareness among clinicians. Environmental exposures and genetic risks have been implicated in the onset of sarcoidosis. Additionally, autoimmune and infectious causes of sarcoidosis have been studied, but more work is needed to understand the mechanism and etiology of the disease.


  • Optional Letter of Intent: Nov. 10, 2021
  • Full Proposals: Jan. 10, 2022
Eligibility Requirements

1. Each applicant organization must be a nonprofit academic or research institution, including domestic nonprofit organizations and domestic public/private academic universities or institutions of higher learning (including colleges, universities, medical schools, and other related academic research institutions); certain qualified governmental agencies with active biomedical research programs may also apply. Institutions not located in the United States are ineligible at this time.

2. All proposed research projects must be led by a Principal Investigator (PI) who holds a PhD, MD, or related research doctorate degree. The PI must be an independent investigator.

3. Institutions may submit more than one proposal, but each proposal must be led by a unique PI.

Funding Type