The Rare Disease Foundation (RDF) and the Clinical Research Support unit (CRSU) have partnered to help clinical researchers across BC Children’s launch new projects aimed at translating their research into improved patient care.
Starting this summer, researchers awarded funding through the RDF- and BC Children’s Hospital Foundation-sponsored Microgrant and Innovative Therapies Programs will have access to expertise and technical support from CRSU’s Answer Factory at no cost. This will allow clinical researchers to stretch their funding further as they will only have to pay for lab materials and supplies and won’t have to pay for staff time.
The Answer Factory gives clinical investigators who don’t have their own research facilities access to a fully-equipped research lab, technical skills and scientific expertise. It’s headed by Staff Scientist Dr. Shirin Kalyan and staffed by a laboratory technician experienced in sample processing, storage and analysis.
The Microgrant Program competition provides small grants of up to $5,000 to fund projects on the front lines of rare disease research that promise to provide answers for today’s patients and address problems that are common to a number of different diseases.
Microgrant proposals are due annually at the end of January, April, July and October. The next deadline is July 31, 2019. The simple application includes a one-page summary of the proposed project, and applicants are typically notified of the funding decision within three weeks of the deadline date. If you are applying for a Microgrant and would like to make use of the Answer Factory’s facilities and services, please contact Dr. Shirin Kalyan before you submit your application.
The Innovative Therapies Program provides grants of up to $25,000 grants to conduct pilot or early stage human clinical trials for any kind of therapy to improve the lives of those with rare diseases. Applications are due annually in January.
Anyone affiliated with (or who has collaborators who are affiliated with) a Canadian Institution or a Registered Institution, including trainees and allied health professionals, can apply for an RDF grant; however, only researchers affiliated with BC Children’s Hospital Research Institute are eligible to use the Answer Factor’s facilities and technical and scientific support.