Funding Outcomes for NINDS R01 Applications
Each fiscal year (FY), NINDS establishes a payline for all percentiled RPGs (e.g. R01, R03, R15, and R21) and funds all applications that score within that payline with very rare exception (FY17 payline: 12th percentile). Figure 1 illustrates all competing R01 applications, grants and bridge awards through the 40th percentile for FY17, regardless of the career stage of the investigator. As part of an effort in recent years to maintain a stable funding environment for investigators, NINDS works to stabilize the number of R01 equivalent grants funded each year (Figure 2).
When resources are available, NINDS supports a limited number of applications with scores outside the payline. These include applications that are high priorities to NINDS; bridge awards to cover a known, productive lab during a brief period of funding uncertainty (Figures 5 and 6) and awards to assist in the transition to independence for investigators in the early parts of their careers. In recent years, NINDS has funded additional R01 applications from Early Stage Investigators (Figure 6) with percentiles beyond the payline, based on funds available. In accordance with NIH policy, NINDS aims to support R01s from these early career scientists at success rates equivalent to those of established investigators submitting new R01 applications.
Figure 1. Competing applications, grants, and bridge awards for all investigators; experienced, new, and early stage. Data shown include all competing R01 applications (green bars), awarded grants (R01 and R37; blue bars), and bridge awards (R56; pink bars) for all categories of investigators in Fiscal Year 2017 (FY17). Dashed line indicates the payline (12th percentile) for FY17. Note, applications at the 1st, 3rd and 4th percentiles were withdrawn due to overlap with other funded grants or not funded due to NIH’s Special Council Review policy.
Figure 2. Number of R01 equivalent grants (R01, R23, R29, R37, and DP2 activity codes) funded by NINDS in fiscal years 1997-2017.
Figure 3: All new (Type 1) R01 applications (green bars), awarded grants (R01 and R37; blue bars), and bridge awards (R56; pink bars) for FY17.
Figure 4: All renewal (Type 2) R01 applications (green bars), awarded grants (R01 and R37; blue bars), and bridge awards (R56; pink bars) for FY17.
Table 1: R01 Success rates for new and renewal applications. Source: NIH Report
Figure 5: FY17 R01 applications (green bars), awarded grants (R01 and R37; blue bars), and bridge awards (R56; pink bars) for experienced investigators, defined as those who have received previous R01-level funding from NIH.
Figure 6: FY17 R01 applications (red bars), awarded grants (R01; blue bars) for Early Stage Investigator applications. An application is eligible for ‘Early Stage Investigator’ status if all of the PIs on the application are Early Stage Investigators. Early Stage Investigators are defined as investigators within 10 years of completing their research training who have not had previous R01-level funding from NIH. Applications at the 16th, 21st, 24th and 25th percentiles were not funded due to overlap with another application that was awarded or lack of independence.