Pilot Study Awards

About the Program

Investigators often struggle to find funding for innovative approaches to scientific questions because their new ideas may not yet be in the scientific mainstream. Each year we support multiple pilot studies with $75,000 each to pave the way for new avenues of ovarian cancer research and to expand our understanding of the disease.

Program Details

One-year awards at $75,000 each, Pilot Study Program awards will support investigator-initiated projects in all areas of ovarian cancer research. In addition, projects designed to analyze data from already funded clinical trials will be considered.

Funds are for direct costs only; institutional overhead and indirect costs will not be included in the award.

Application Process

All application materials should be submitted through proposalCENTRAL, by the application due date. Applicants who do not already have an account in proposalCENTRAL must register for an account prior to beginning application. Once logged into proposalCENTRAL, search for Rivkin Center in the Grant Opportunities tab and select the appropriate grant.

Applications will only be accepted during the open competition window and will not be considered after the deadline. The completed application must be validated to ensure all materials have been submitted. Signature pages must be printed for a wet signature (not an electronic signature) from the named institutional official which can then be uploaded. To ensure a successful submission has taken place, confirm that the status of the application has changed to “Submitted.”

Iain McNeish, MD/PhD

University of Glasgow / Imperial College London

2016 Pilot Study Award: Utilizing CRISPR/Cas9 Technology to Generate Improved Murine Models of Ovarian High Grade Serous Carcinoma

Dr. Iain McNeish developed much needed ovarian cancer mouse models that mimic the genetics of ovarian cancer in humans using the cutting edge CRISPR/Cas9 genetic engineering technology. The mouse models have single or combined mutations in genes known to be mutated in ovarian cancer, including Brca1, Brca2, Pten, Tp53 and Nf1. Dr. McNeish showed that the mouse models behave similarly to human cancers in response to known chemotherapy drugs. This study helped create critical tools that have been shared with 50+ labs worldwide. It will provide the basis for preclinical testing of new drug combinations and for understanding how ovarian tumors develop.