We invite our partners in industry (pharmaceutical, biological, medical devices) as well as anyone interested in furthering the field of transplantation and immunology research to participate in the Transplantation and Immunology Research Network's ground-breaking approach to supporting transplantation research and identifying and nurturing the next generation of brilliant investigators.
The opportunities below represent just a sample of possible collaborative efforts. If you have an idea for a direction in research that you would like to fund, please contact us.
- Send your industry scientist to an AST laboratory for a one- to two-year term. The AST and the TIRN will work with you to identify an AST member laboratory or translational or clinical research program that aligns with your research goals and the needs of your industry scientist. Working side-by-side, AST and industry scientists will have opportunities to learn and build from their collective strengths, expand their knowledge of cutting-edge techniques, and grow their professional networks.
- Bringing an AST scientist to your industry laboratory for a one- to two-year term. With the expectation that future government funding will limit the research and discovery that is necessary to advance the field, academic and industry partnerships offer investigators a new and different environment for scientific collaboration and research. This option is proudly offered as an opportunity to create and foster a new generation of research partnerships between the AST and industry.
- Funding a promising researcher. This opportunity allows you to support investigator-initiated projects, which will always be a valuable source of scientific breakthroughs.
AST TIRN: Procedure for Directed Research Grants
The AST Transplantation & Immunology Research Network (TIRN) seeks to increase the availability of funded research opportunities in transplantation and immunology research. In addition to pursuing funding to support our annual career development research grants and other investigator-initiated research, AST TIRN is also interested in partnering with industry, academia, or non-profit entities that wish to support research in a specific area. Through such arrangements, AST TIRN can help its partners meet their scientific goals while increasing funding available for researchers. To guide these efforts, AST TIRN has developed a set of procedures surrounding the initiation, promotion, review, and administration of directed research grants. These procedures are an origination point for discussion, and it should be noted that AST TIRN’s has a degree of flexibility on many matters herein.
TIRN carries out its mission through the following:
1) Striving for Excellence – We aim for the highest standards of performance, integrity, and service in all dimensions of our work.
2) Investment in Leaders – We support effective, visionary, and collaborative leaders who motivate others, inspire change, and produce results.
3) Adoption of a Long-Term Perspective – We take the long view, considering the implications of today’s decisions for future generations.
4) Demonstrated Curiosity – We actively solicit new perspectives to inform our work and are committed to collaboration and partnership.
Research Grant Requirements
A grantor may approach AST TIRN at any time with a proposal to seek applications for research funding in a specific area/set of areas. If the area of research fits with AST’s and TIRN’s mission and vision, AST TIRN will work with the grantor to develop the grant requirements, request for application (RFA), marketing plan, etc. This includes the amount and term of the grant, eligibility criteria, guidelines and conditions, allowable expenses, and performance measurement. AST TIRN and the grantor will develop a timeline for each grant that outlines the responsibilities of each party. AST TIRN and the grantor will come to agreement on all aspects of the grant and sign a letter of agreement before the grant is announced.
Items for Consideration during Development of the Research Grant
AST TIRN will provide standard language used for AST’s other research grant programs. The grantor may recommend changing certain criteria to suit their needs, but some elements may not be changed.
Elements that are determined by the grantor
· The grantor may decide if the grant should be limited to North American researchers/research settings only, or if international researchers/research settings may apply.
This is contingent upon whether AST TIRN or the grantor will be administering the payments (see below), to be discussed during the development of the grant.
· The grantor may decide what the grant funds can be used for and what expenses are prohibited: e.g. salary support, research team salary support, equipment, indirect expenses/institutional overhead, etc.
Grantors are strongly encouraged to permit an allowance of institutional overhead costs, as this widens the pool of potential applicants.
· The grantor may determine the length of the funding period (e.g. one year, two years, etc.).
Elements that cannot be changed by the grantor
· If AST TIRN will administer the payments (see below), the grantor may only select a quarterly payment schedule or a one-time payment (for smaller grants only).
· The funding must be limited to AST members; if an applicant is not an AST member they may apply for membership as long as their application is received prior to the grant deadline.
· The grantor may not request a timeline – be it for submissions, review, or the research term itself – that is unrealistic for execution either for AST TIRN or for the researcher.
· Grant payment(s) must be made to the institution of the recipient and not the individual.
· At a minimum, the grantee will be asked to provide a report annually during the term of the grant that summarizes progress and use of grant funds.
Review, Scoring, and Decision Process
AST TIRN and the grantor will determine together the review criteria, scoring mechanism, ranking process, and how the ultimate decision on the grant recipient(s) will be made. It is expected that AST TIRN reviewers will have an active role in reviewing and determining the grant recipient; any deviation from this must be discussed in advanced.
The final recipient(s) does not need to be approved by the AST TIRN committee or the AST Board of Directors. AST TIRN will notify all applicants of their status (accept or reject) by email.
Elements that cannot be changed by the grantor
· AST TIRN will determine how the scores are submitted and tabulated using their expertise and experience to choose the best method considering factors like timeline, complexity, and budget (e.g. via spreadsheet, via an online scoring system, etc.).
· AST TIRN’s reviewer conflict of interest policy must be in place to ensure no reviewers are in direct conflict with any submitted grants.
Administration of the Grant – Letter of Agreement, Payments & Reporting
There are two options for the administration of research grants, and AST TIRN will assess an administrative fee for the work associated with the directed grant requested by the grantor:
Option 1: Grantor administers the grant
In this scenario, the grantor will contract directly with the researcher and be responsible for administering all payments, collecting all reporting, and managing the grant until the term of the grant expires. AST TIRN will be available for questions, but will not maintain an active role in the administration of the grant.
· AST TIRN will prepare a plaque for the recipient and present it to the winner at the next major AST meeting (Cutting Edge of Transplantation or the American Transplant Congress).
· Grantor will provide to AST TIRN copies of any and all reports from the grantee during the term of the grant.
Option 2: AST TIRN administers the grant
In this scenario, the AST TIRN will provide a letter of agreement to the researcher, and the agreement will exist between the individual and AST TIRN. AST TIRN will be responsible for administering all payments, collecting all reporting, and managing the grant until the term of the grant expires.
- The grantor will provide the full amount of the grant to AST TIRN according to the terms of the agreement, and funding will be paid out to the grantee by AST TIRN following verification that the recipient is still meeting agreed-upon milestones.
- The grantor will pay an administrative fee of 2.5% of the grant total (not to exceed $5,000) to cover AST TIRN staff costs related to administering all payments, collecting all reports and managing the grant until the term of the grant expires.
- AST TIRN will prepare a plaque for the recipient and present it to the winner at the next major AST meeting (Cutting Edge of Transplantation or the American Transplant Congress).
- AST TIRN will provide to grantor copies of any and all reports from the grantee during the term of the grant.