Call for Proposals


FASTR Deadline: December 10, 2012

Proposal Deadline: December 14, 2012


The Purdue University Center for Cancer Research invites applications for cancer-focused innovative, idea grants from single investigators and collaborative teams(Intra- and Inter-programmatic collaboration is encouraged, where applicable). Projects that utilize/incorporate Center for Cancer Research shared resources are also desired.  These awards are made possible through the philanthropic gifts of the Indiana Elks Charities, Inc.  The proposal will be funded at a level appropriate for the proposed work, but will not exceed $ 30,000.   


In order to assess the quality of the science or technology, the following criteria will be used to evaluate the proposal:




Novelty / Innovative / Creativity

The proposed research introduces new ideas, methods, tools, or devices that are different from current approaches. The proposed research uses current approaches in new ways. 

Scientific Merit

The proposed research will answer the study hypothesis. Or the proposed research will lead to the development of the proposed technology.

Significance / Cancer Relevance

The proposed research addresses an important problem or critical barrier in the cancer field. 


The proposed research plan has a good probability of reaching goals.

Potential to Attract Peer-Review Funding and Peer-Review Publications

The proposed research provides a foundation for submitting or moving towards a peer-reviewed funding opportunity and/or publications.

  1. PI’s must be members of the Purdue University Center for Cancer Research.  One project proposal per investigator.
  2. The proposal should be single-spaced using 11 point Arial font, no less than 0.75 inch margins and not exceed FIVE pages.
  3. FASTR Deadline -You will need to contact Doug Cuttell (email: to schedule a meeting in order to map your project by this deadline.  Doug will need to accommodate everyone, so the sooner you meet with Doug, the better.  This deadline does not mean that your proposal needs to be written.  However, you will not be able to submit a proposal if contact is made after this deadline.  Keep in mind that it is wise to not schedule your appointment too close to the proposal deadline.  The project map is a part of your complete submission and will be reviewed as such.

The following must be included within a five-page limit:

  1. Abstract (summary of the project)
  2. Specific Aims of the project
  3. Background and Significance
     4.  Plan of Research

The following must be included in the application, but not within the five-page limit:

  1. Cited Literature (limited to one page)
  2. Project Map (see below and next page under “Other Helpful Information”)
  3. Mandatory cover page.
  4. CV of PI(s)
  5. A complete list of all existing and pending grant support for each PI. List any additional sources (e.g., companies) where support for the proposed project is being requested.
  6. A brief statement from the PI(s) explaining how the proposed project is substantially different from currently supported projects. Derivatives of ongoing projects will not be supported.  This is placed on Proposed Budget Form.
  7. Complete the Proposed Budget Form; a brief description of the required personnel and supplies must be included.  Salary support for PIs and clerical staff, equipment above $ 2500 and travel are not allowed. 
  8. If you received previous support from the Center's small grants program within the last five years, please contact Kim Crist for providing publications and extramural grants that resulted from that funding.

Electronic applications must be emailed to by 11:59 pm December 14, 2012.  Applications require prior written approval of the appropriate department heads and deans, but do not require completion of the university transmittal check sheet at the time of submission.

Acceptance of an award will indicate your willingness to serve on the Center’s Small Grants Review Committee and to possibly represent the Center at the annual Indiana ElksConvention in early June.

For the continued success of the Purdue University Center for Cancer Research’s NCI Cancer Center Support Grant (CCSG, “Core Grant”), it is essential that Cancer Center members acknowledge support from the Purdue University Center for Cancer Research in publications and seminar presentations. Suggestions for acknowledging the Cancer Center are found below.

Acknowledgement of the Center’s Shared Resources


Acknowledgement of Support from the Center’s Small Grants Program

Support from the Purdue University Center for Cancer ResearchSmall Grants Program is gratefully acknowledged.

The focus or criteria of each cycle is subject to change in the future; specific scientific areas may be targeted.

Outcomes of previous awarded grants by the Center may be used as a basis for funding decisions (over the past 5 years).

The projected start date is February 2013 to January 2014.  Funds must be expended in one year from award date (Extensions will be considered).

For questions contact Doug Cuttell (email:


What is FASTR?

It is a new resource available to the Purdue Center for Cancer Research Investigator.  Some of you saw me unveil this resource at the Center retreat in September. FASTR, which stands for Facilitation and Advancement of Science for Transitioning Research, is about providing support to keep your science moving so that you can reach your goals.  The Center wants to help support you and your innovative ideas and help you take them as far as you want to go. 

FASTR is made up of two new tools for your toolbox, project mapping and roadblock removal.  Doug Cuttell can go over what and how this can be used to your advantage within this pilot mechanism and beyond.

What is a Project Map?

Doug Cuttell will have some examples to show you when you both meet.  The project map is a 10,000 foot view showing the steps involved in order to obtain the preliminary data required for extramural funding (and publications).  It will also show the integration of collaborators (if applicable) within your project plan.  Project mapping is a process management tool that communicates a process, but also allows the creator a different or supplemental way of organizing and managing research.  It is especially helpful when the project plan may not be well defined.  Project mapping is not meant to lock the investigator into a particular project direction, it is anticipated that results/observations may alter your original research plan.  Also, some projects can be organized as phased projects, but for others it may not be appropriate.  This can be determined when you meet with Doug.  If you know what you plan to accomplish, a draft outline of this proposed research (completed beforehand) would be helpful in the discussion of creating a map.  Likewise, if you find it helpful to write a proposal draft beforehand, then this is up to you. 

The New Milestone Funding Process

Milestone funding is not about giving a partial amount of money and seeing how far you get.  Quite the contrary, milestone funding is dynamic and is about funding the right amount of money and giving you project support to get where you want to go.  This mechanism should never be underfunding unless the cost of the project well exceeds the award available.

So for example, if your project costs $ 30,000 to gather all preliminary data to confidently apply for extramural funding, then somehow, you should receive the opportunity to use that amount of money.  So you can succeed.  That being said, the funding process cannot fund the right amount of money without seeing what/how you intend to do to reach your extramural funding milestone and the natural decision points that lie ahead.  So the FASTR planning process (project mapping) is going to be a part of the application process for the funding mechanism.  This is not meant to make this proposal process harder or longer, but instead the FASTR process will assist you in communicating your needs and direction.  It will also assist the review teams in making funding recommendations because they will have the picture of the plan that supports your proposal and what steps lay in front of you.  The FASTR process can also find resources you might need in order to gather your preliminary data.  The FASTR process is also about helping to alleviate roadblocks in your research.

How will I be funded?

As mentioned in “What is a project map” above, some projects can be examined in logical phases, but some may not be appropriate for phased research.  Therefore, it may not be appropriate to fund only a portion of a project that is not meant to be phased.  To be able to fund either scenario, there are two funding options available, lump sum funding and encumbered funding.  In lump sum funding, the project will receive a lump sum of money at the beginning of the project, up to the amount of award available. 

In encumbered funding, the project will have a lump sum of money reserved for the award (up to the amount available).  The investigator(s) will receive a portion of funding to fund the first phase(s) of the project immediately and the remaining balance will be held until completion of the first phase(s).  The investigator(s) would then contact Doug Cuttell (email: for instructions on the process for submitting a progress report, statement of continued significance for the project, and an updated map (if appropriate).  The reviewers will assess progress and the remaining path to gathering the preliminary data required for extramural funding (and publications).  Encumbered funds will be available on a rolling basis and the investigator should have an answer on funding within 30 days of progress submission.  You will not need to wait until a call is issued in order to access the remaining balance.

Once the lump sum or encumbered funds are expended, then you will need to re-apply competitively for any further funding of the project.  A progress report will be required for the re-application.

For questions contact Doug Cuttell (email:; he will be more than happy to explain the change in the application and award process.