Launch Pilot Grants

undefinedWVCTSI is accepting Innovation Pilot Project Funding applications for clinical and translational research focusing on accelerating the translation of intellectual property developed by WVCTSI researchers to the market.

Proposal Due Date

  • June 6, 2016 by 5:00 PM EST

Funding Opportunity Purpose

The goal of this Request for Applications (RFA) is to accelerate the translation of intellectual property developed by West Virginia University (WVU) researchers as well West Virginia Clinical Science Institute (WVCTSI) partner organizations into realized inventions as well as patents. Researchers should submit an application that meets the following criteria:

  • Poised for commercialization with specific targeted demonstration or test results;
  • The technology can be developed with available resources provided by this grant to the point that it can be used for additional commercialization funding or be licensable within 6-9 months of receipt of the award;
  • The initial research scale results require the development of a prototype;
  • Project has progressed to the point where typical academic research funding sources are no longer applicable but the project has yet to reach a commercial value inflection point; and,
  • Must demonstrate that if the project is successful the results will be a technology that has interested licensing or funding partners.

Application Instructions

Applicants are encouraged to review the instructions provided below carefully and to contact WVCTSI Pilot personnel with questions prior to the submission of your Launch Pilot Grant application. Applications must be submitted via email as a single PDF document to Wesley Kimble ( by the close of business (5:00 pm EST) on or before the deadline date.


For this funding cycle, the budget is limited to a maximum of $50,000 in total direct costs with a period of performance of six (6) months.

Compliance Requirements

Researchers submitting a full proposal in response to this Launch Pilot Grant RFA must include CITI certification for investigators conducting research with human subjects as well as documentation of IRB protocol submission and/or IACUC protocol submission. Documentation for these requirements should be included in the Appendix of the application. IRB and IACUC approval is not required prior to application submission deadline, but must be completed within 30 days of project awards.

Repetitive Funding

Applicants who have received one of the following grants on the same general area of investigation within the last 12 months prior to application deadline from the following WVU internal funding mechanisms are not encouraged to apply: Bridge Funding, Research Funding Development Grant (RFDG), WVCTSI Funding, or PSCoR (Program to Stimulate Competitive Research).

Those with questions related to the funding restrictions may contact Dr. Anne Bolyard via email with any questions or concerns.

Other Requirements for the Launch Pilot Grants Program

The following priorities for Launch Pilot grants will be articulated to the review committee:

  • Applications that have been favorably reviewed extramurally and/or by the WVCTSI that are re-submitted with clear responsiveness to previous critique and a plan for translational focus of the research.
  • Proposals with investigator teams that include clinician scientists in key roles (PI/Co-PI) with clearly articulated plans for translational application of the research. Clinician investigators must contribute an appropriate amount of effort (minimum 10% effort for the PI) to the project and their roles must be clearly defined in the application.
  • Proposals with strong potential to secure external funding; this potential will be evaluated based on the science as well as the PI (if single PI) or the team of investigators if Co-investigators are included in the application.
  • WVCTSI thematic focus topics related to cancer, neuroscience, obesity and metabolic disease, cardiovascular disease, stroke and the risk factors associated with the aforementioned thematic focus topics.
  • Applications in which Early Stage (ESI) and Junior Investigators propose pilot studies to obtain preliminary data for an extramural grant submission. An ESI is a new investigator who has completed his or her terminal research degree or medical or other professional residency—whichever date is later—within the past 10 years and has not yet been awarded a substantial, competing NIH research grant. For WVCTSI purposes, qualifying ESIs must have at least one year of eligibility remaining that meets the NIH definition of an ESI upon completion of their WVCTSI funded project. Junior Investigators and ESIs must identify a mentor to assist with the investigator’s training with written documentation that the mentor is willing to serve in this capacity as well as a description of the mentoring team, if applicable.
  • Applications intended to stimulate innovation and commercialization.

Eligibility Information

PI Eligibility is limited to the following:

  • Faculty (all title series including regular, research, clinical) of the WVCTSI member institutions (West Virginia University, CAMC-Institute/WVU-Charleston, and West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM)) who intend to apply for external funding in the future.
  • The following personnel are not eligible to serve as PIs but may be co-investigators: investigators-in-training including residents, post-doctoral fellows, clinical fellows, and faculty member(s) with courtesy appointments.
  • WVCTSI Leadership are restricted from submitting applications which will direct funds into her or his program or lab.
  • Individual PIs cannot receive WVCSTI funding for more than one Pilot Grants Program project. Upon completion of an initial Clinical and Translational Pilot Grants Program project, subsequent WVCTSI funding can be requested based on the PI’s scholarly productivity relating to the initial funded project. Scholarly productivity includes the submission of applications for extramural grant opportunities, publications, and proceedings/presentations.

Additional Information on Eligibility


  • Leaders of pilot projects must hold a faculty appointment or equivalent at the time the pilot award commences. For the purposes of this RFA, these are individuals who can independently apply for Federal or non-Federal investigator-initiated peer-reviewed Research Project Grants (RPG). Individuals holding postdoctoral fellowships or other positions that lack independent status are not eligible to lead pilot projects.
  • The Project lead for Pilot projects may not concurrently have research funding from other IDeA Program award mechanisms (e.g. INBRE, COBRE).
  • Pilot projects may not overlap with ongoing WVCTSI-funded projects.

Launch Pilot Cover Page

Launch Pilot Complete RFA  (Updated 05/06/16)