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Development Grants

Grants to USA, Canada, and International Postdoctoral
Researchers for Neuromuscular Research Projects

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA)

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

04/16/21 Receipt


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Grants to USA, Canada, and international postdoctoral researchers for neuromuscular research projects. Applicants are required to submit a letter of intent prior to submitting a full grant application. Funding is intended for salary, equipment, travel, supplies, and publication expenses related to the research.

The purpose of Development Grants is to expand the number of scientists conducting meritorious neuromuscular disease research from among investigators who may be part of a team in the laboratory of a senior investigator under whose guidance the researcher will be given flexibility to work independently or as part of a collaborative effort. 

Allowable Costs:

  • Personnel must be listed by name, role, and percentage effort devoted to project but should be listed as $0 under the Requested Salary column. The Salary category for a Development Grant is limited to the Principal Investigator only. The Principal Investigator's specific role(s) in the proposed research must be described under “Proposed Budget Justification.”
    • The “Institutional Base Salary” should be the Principal Investigator’s total base salary and “Fringe Benefits” listed should be the proportionate percentage of the Principal Investigator’s benefit cost.
  • Equipment whether capital or not, must be listed in this section. Along with a full justification, identify the manufacturer and model number under budget justification section. This category is limited to a maximum of $3,000 per year. Computer hardware is limited to a maximum of $3,000 per grant. Laptop purchases are limited to one (1) per grant and must be fully justified on the Budget Justification page.
  • Supplies There is no maximum cost for supplies. The total request should include all supplies that will be purchased for this project but may not include “Other” expenses such as shipping, printing or office supplies. You do not need to group expenses by the type of supplies. You may enter a total amount for Consumables.
  • Travel to attend foreign or domestic scientific or medical meetings to present the results of MDA-supported research is permitted. Also, funds for travel required in conducting the specific aims of the research project may be requested. All travel must be fully justified in the proposed budget justification; however, must not exceed $1,500 in any given year and is restricted to personnel listed on the Budget in the Personnel Cost category.
  • Other expenses may include items such as publication costs, computer use fees, equipment maintenance, shipping and office supplies. Office supplies may NOT exceed $600 in any given year. The need for each item must be justified in the budget justification section. If fees for consultants are requested, their names and institutional affiliations must also be given.
  • Indirect Costs are limited to a maximum of 10% of all direct costs. 

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 184854

Estimated Size of Grant:

Applications will be accepted for no more than $70,000 per year for 3 years including a maximum 10% indirect cost rate.

Term of Contract:

Proposed award period: July 1, 2021-June 30, 2024.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

MDA will consider an application for a Development Grant from a candidate who may be a member of a research team in the laboratory of an independent investigator (Principal Investigator) under whose guidance the applicant will be given flexibility to conduct a neuromuscular disease research project.

To be eligible for a Development Grant, an applicant must:
1. Hold a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.), Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Doctor of Science (D.Sc.) or equivalent degree (i.e. D.O.);
2. Be a member of a research team at an appropriate institution;
3. Be qualified to conduct a program of original research under the supervision of an Independent Investigator;
4. Have an acceptable research plan for a specific disease in MDA's program;
5. Have access to institutional resources necessary to conduct the proposed research project;
6. Have a minimum of eighteen (18) months of post-degree research laboratory training at the time of application;
7. Be no more than 60 months (5 years) from receiving their Ph.D. or D.Sc.; or no more than 96 months (8 years) from receiving their M.D., D.O. or M.D., Ph.D. Please contact MDA to discuss your eligibility if you have questions.
8. Not have been funded under the Development Grant program in the past.

Proposals from applicants outside the United States will be considered for projects of highest priority to MDA and when, in addition to the applicant's having met the requirements noted above, the applicant's country of residence may not have adequate sources of financial support for biomedical research.

Development Grant applications are limited to one application per lab per application cycle.

Unallowable costs:

Pre-Application Information:

LOIs will be due March 15, 2021
Applications will be due April 16, 2021
Awards will be issued July 1, 2021

The LOI and application must be completed and submitted through proposalCENTRAL. The LOI and application must be received on or before the deadline dates. Once the deadlines have passed, the submit button will no longer be available. All deadlines are located at the top of each section of your LOI and application.

Incomplete or improperly prepared applications will not be reviewed. An application will be considered incomplete if: (1) it is not prepared and submitted according to instructions; or (2) the information it contains is not sufficient to permit an adequate review.

An applicant may resubmit their original application with revisions up to two (2) times. However, an applicant who is resubmitting an application may not be more than six (6) years from their terminal degree. M.D., D.O. and M.D., Ph.D. applicants, may not be more than 9 years from their terminal degree.

Applications and ALL supporting documents must be submitted in English. This includes IACUC Approvals, IRB Approvals and Biohazardous Use Certificates.

Three (3) letters of reference are required for each applicant.

If your submission is successful, you will receive a confirmation message on the screen and a confirmation email.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

Contact the Grants Management team for further information:

Muscular Dystrophy Association National Office
161 N. Clark, Suite 3550
Chicago, Illinois 60601

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

USA Territories: American Samoa (USA)   Guam (USA)   Puerto Rico (USA)   Virgin Islands (USA)   Northern Mariana Islands (USA)

USA Compact Free Associations: The Federated States of Micronesia (USA)   Marshall Islands (USA)   Republic of Palau (USA)

Canada: Alberta;   British Columbia;   Manitoba;   New Brunswick;   Newfoundland and Labrador;   Northwest Territories;   Nova Scotia;   Nunavut;   Ontario;   Prince Edward Island;   Quebec;   Saskatchewan;   Yukon;


International country outside of the USA, Israel and Canada.

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