We believe that MNITF is uniquely positioned to advance transplantation-related research through non-profit/private partnership during this time of unprecedented scarcity of federal funding. We also believe that by providing funding for research directly applicable to clinical practice, and by collaborating with for-profit organizations, we can forge a new model of research and development for commercial organizations that are often overburdened with regulatory restrictions.
To realize these improvements, MNITF has committed to funding research in two cycles each year:
- June 15th (LOI deadline) – The applicants invited to complete the full application must submit the application by July 31st.
- November 1st (LOI deadline) – The applicants invited to complete the full application must submit by December 15th.
Approximately three to six grants will be awarded each year, depending upon the amount of the grants and the annual budget.
The Research Grant Program provides supporter short and long term research. For short-term research, the focus has been to benefit the transplant community for the purpose of improved organ donor screening, organ quality assessment and predictive indicators. Examples of the areas of research funded recently:
- Multi-target screening technologies, i.e., multiplex NAT and serology assays, supplemental assays, antibodies avidity assays and other multiplexing assays;
- New and innovative organ quality assessment technologies, i.e., pre-transplant molecular gene expression profiles and identification of biomarkers to assess organ quality and predict post-transplant outcomes;
- Discovery of new biomarkers predictive of rejection vs. tolerance, and development and validation of new immune monitoring technologies, including genetic expression profiles, miRNAome and exosome profiles, and proteome or cellular phenotype/function profiles, and in vivo non-invasive molecular imaging.
- Research that has the potential to safely expand the pool of eligible donors.
MNITF also provides grant opportunities that focus on longer term and potentially more impactful research:
- Genetic engineering and cellular engineering strategies to reduce allograft immunogenicity, enhance histocompatibility, and promote tolerance and long-term graft function and survival;
- Translational application of stem cell biology and regenerative medicine relevant to human organ and tissue transplantation;
- Behavior modification leading to better adherence and organ retention by transplant recipients.