DF/HCC - UMass Boston U54 Pilot Projects

June 01, 2018

The UMass Boston – DF/HCC U54 Partnership has released a new Request for Applications! Click here for the full RFAand important dates can be found below:

Deadline for Letter of Intent (Required):  July 16, 2018, by 11:59 PM EST
Deadline for Application:  August 31, 2018, by 11:59 PM EST
Award start date:  October 15, 2018


The purpose of this joint grant between UMass Boston and DF/HCC is to foster and support intensive collaborations among investigators at UMass Boston (an institution that serves underserved health disparity populations and underrepresented students) and DF/HCC (an NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center). The NCI Comprehensive Partnerships to Advance Cancer Health Equity (CPACHE) (U54) Grant aims to develop stronger national cancer programs to understand the reasons behind the significant cancer disparities and related impacts on underserved communities and socio-economically disadvantaged populations. The goal of the UMass Boston-DF/HCC Partnership is to improve cancer-related research, training, and outreach opportunities for under-represented minority (URM) students, fellows, and early stage investigators and to develop information and resources toward translating research to mitigate cancer disparities. 


  • Projects that demonstrate evidence of being in a strong position to apply to external funding sources (e.g. NIH, NSF, DOE) 2-3 years from the end of the project will be prioritized.
  • Projects must specifically address areas of cancer disparities among the underserved, racial/ethnic minorities and/or socio-economically disadvantaged populations.

 We strongly encourage applications that:

  • Create inter-programmatic interactions between members in clinical- and discipline-based research
  • Evaluate biological risk factors that potentially contribute to cancer disparities
  • Include biospecimen procurement for such studies
  • Combine basic and population science methods
  • Focus on cancer outreach and include hypothesis-driven research that may lead to increased use of and access to beneficial medical procedures
    • E.g. primary preventative measures, recruitment and retention of underserved and socioeconomically disadvantaged populations into clinical trials such as prevention, early detection or treatment trials


Submission of an LOI is required. LOIs are limited to two pages in length, should be numbered (if needed) and in PDF format. The LOI should include the following information:

  1. A description of the proposed research
  2. Specific aims
  3. A brief paragraph on the scientific significance and how it relates to the goals of the NCI (CPACHE) (U54) and UMass Boston – DF/HCC Partnership
  4. 2-3 bullet points on how the outcomes of the proposed work will position the project well for funding as a U54 Full Project and/or NIH (e.g. R01/R15/R21-level funding) mechanism
  5. DF/HCC and UMass Boston faculty who are collaborating along with their contact information.

Feedback will be provided on all LOIs in order to help investigators develop the strongest application possible. The LOI is not binding and does not enter the review process.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Partnership Director, Abby Cook, via email at U54Partnership@umb.edu

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