Last week the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) announced that it will no longer accept investigator-initiated, exploratory/developmental grant (R21) applications in response to the National Institutes of Health’s Parent Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), NIH Exploratory Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21).

Investigator-initiated R21 applications will not be accepted for review and funding beyond Fiscal Year 2012. Therefore, the last receipt dates for NHLBI investigator-initiated R21 grant applications are Oct. 16, 2011, for new applications and Nov. 16, 2011, for resubmission (amended) applications. Individuals who submit a new investigator-initiated R21 application for the Oct. 16, 2011, receipt date will not be allowed to revise and resubmit their applications.

According to the NHLBI, the R21 grant is meant to facilitate the award of larger, regular research project grant (R01) applications by providing investigators with limited funds and time to pursue initial studies to obtain preliminary data for larger, more fully developed research projects. However, the NHLBI reports that it has determined that this grant mechanism is not having the effect or the impact on its research grant portfolio in the manner for which it was originally intended.