NIH – Personalized Strategies to Manage Symptoms of Chronic Illness (R01, R21 Clinical Trial Optional)

November 10, 2017 by School of Medicine Webmaster

The following description was taken from the R01 version of this FOA:

The purpose of this initiative is to encourage interdisciplinary research to decrease symptom burden and enhance health-related quality of life (HRQL) in persons with chronic illness through a) increasing knowledge of the biological mechanisms of symptoms and b) promoting innovative, cost-effective, targeted interventions to prevent, manage or ameliorate these symptoms.

Chronic illnesses have emerged as major health concerns of Americans. People are increasingly focused not simply on living longer, but on maintaining or even improving their capacity to live well over their entire lives.  For example, whereas cancer used to be a fatal disease, it is now considered a chronic illness. In a recent report from the Institute of Medicine, cancer survivorship was cited as an exemplar of a chronic illness that detracts from many Americans ability to maintain or even improve their capacity to live well. After primary cancer treatment is completed and for more than 10 years following treatment, survivors suffer from a wide range of multiple, severe, new and persistent symptoms that have a negative impact on their functional status, HRQL, and well-being. Across cancer types, chronic pain, fatigue, sleep disturbance, cognitive limitations, anxiety, and fear of recurrence are symptoms commonly experienced by survivors. These common symptoms tend to cluster and because they remain underdiagnosed and undertreated pose a significant source of suffering.  In addition, adults and children who survive cancer are more likely to experience other chronic conditions as they age and incur more health care costs than average Americans without a cancer history.  As the number of persons with chronic illness steadily increases and the complexity of contemporary treatments remain, mitigating the set of adverse symptoms associated with chronic illness requires a research agenda that advances innovative, personalized symptom management in this population. A strategic effort has potential to stimulate a reduction in the symptom burden of chronic illness.

The research objectives of this FOA are to:

  • Examine complex adaptive systems related to biobehavioral and environmental interactions that underlie symptom evolution to include change over time
  • Identify and validate novel biomarkers and other patient risk factors (i.e. re-hospitalization, health care costs) to assess individual susceptibility to physical, cognitive, and affective symptoms and serve as surrogate endpoints for evaluating clinical benefit of targeted interventions
  • Develop computer-simulated dynamic models that result in strategies to address individual heterogeneity related to symptoms, clusters, and patterns
  • Develop and test targeted scalable interventions to prevent and mitigate symptoms/clusters to include examination of omics and genetic factors that predict response to interventions
  • Examine large databases and electronic health records to discover new biologic, clinical, psychosocial , behavioral and economic factors related to symptom burden and HRQL experienced by persons with chronic illness and new patterns and trends that may translate to targeted interventions

This FOA is intended to encourage clinical studies only (including experimental, observational, or interventional studies in humans); it is not intended for studies in animal models.  Studies that include pharmacological agents, herbal medicines, dietary supplements, and probiotics are not appropriate for this FOA.  Acupuncture and certain other complementary and alternative interventions are also not appropriate.

Specific to NINR: Interdisciplinary collaborations that include nurse scientists in the project team are strongly encouraged.  Additionally, applicants should consider engaging the resources and expertise of nearby or otherwise available Clinical and Translational Science Award grant sites (CTSAs) and/or other research networks where possible.

Deadlines:  standard dates and standard AIDS dates apply


Filed Under: Funding Opportunities