Notice of Special Interest (NOSI): National Cancer Institute (NCI) Emergency Administrative Supplements for Research and Training Continuity of Postdoctoral Fellows during Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Application or LOI Due Date
First Available Due Date: July 6, 2020. Expiration Date: August 15, 2020
Brief Description

Through this Notice of Special Interest (NOSI), the National Cancer Institute (NCI) announces an opportunity for current NCI funded Principal Investigators whose postdoctoral fellows have temporarily lost stipend support from a non-profit funder because of the COVID-19 global pandemic may apply for an administrative supplement to cover the postdoctoral fellow’s salary plus applicable F&A for the time and effort devoted to the NCI funded grant.


Continuity is a critical element in research training. The current COVID-19 pandemic is causing a significant fund-raising shortfall for some non-profit organizations who fund cancer research training of postdoctoral fellows, leading, in some instances, to postdoctoral fellows currently working on NCI funded grants to lose their sources of funding.

Application and Submission Information

Applications for this initiative must be submitted using the following opportunity or its subsequent reissued equivalent.

PA-18-591- Administrative Supplements to Existing NIH Grants and Cooperative Agreements (Parent Admin Supp Clinical Trial Optional).

All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide and PA-18-591 must be followed, with the following additions:

Application Due Date: Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis from July 6, 2020, through August 14, 2020. All requests, regardless of the parent award funding mechanism, must be received on August 14, 2020,by 5:00 PM local time of the applicant organization, for possible funding in FY2020. This NOSI expires on August 15, 2020.

BudgetApplication budgets are limited to the time and effort the postdoctoral fellow is devoting to the NCI funded research grant. The period of support for the supplement may be up to 6 months or for the duration of the funding hiatus experienced by the postdoctoral fellow, whichever is shorter.

Eligible Individuals: The program directors/principal investigators (PDs/PIs) must hold an active NCI research grant or cooperative agreement in the area related to the focus of the postdoctoral fellow’s work for whom the supplement is being requested.

For supplements to NCI awards that include multiple program directors/principal investigators (PDs/PIs), the supplement may be requested by any or all of the PDs/PIs (in accordance with the existing leadership plan) and submitted by the awardee institution of the parent award.

Funds characterized as compensation may be paid to fellows only when there is an employer-employee relationship, the payments are for services rendered, and the situation otherwise meets the conditions for compensation of fellows. In addition, compensation must be in accordance with organizational policies applied consistently to both federally and non-federally supported activities and must be supported by acceptable accounting records that reflect the employer-employee relationship.

NOTENCI is neither mandating nor encouraging recipients to convert postdoctoral fellows to employees. That decision must be based upon internal negotiations between the institution and the fellow.

Submitting Applications:

  • Every application must include the following four components:
    • The abstract of the fellowship and how it relates to the parent grant;
    • A budget page and justification;
    • A one-page description of the work that will be performed on the NCI grant for which supplemental funds are being requested; and
    • A signed letter of support from the non-profit organization providing the fellowship. The letter must document the COVID-19-related budget hiatus for the fellowship and the current level of salary support they are providing to the postdoctoral fellow. Preference will be given to applications from Institutions that will co-fund the stipend.
  • The process for Streamlined Submissions using the eRA Commons cannot be used for this initiative.
  • Applicants are strongly encouraged to notify the program contact at the Institute supporting the parent award that a request has been submitted in response to this FOA in order to facilitate efficient processing of the request.
  • Applications nonresponsive to the terms of this Notice will not be considered for this initiative.
  • All applications (including those for multi-project activity codes) must be submitted electronically using a single-project application form package
  • For funding consideration, applicants must include “NOT-CA-20-082” (without quotation marks) in the Agency Routing Identifier field (box 4b) of the SF424 R&R form. Applications without this information in box 4b will not be considered for this initiative.

Evaluation Process: NCI will conduct administrative reviews of applications and will support the most meritorious applications submitted for consideration, based upon the availability of funds.


  • Is the work proposed within the scope of the NCI grant for which the supplement is being requested?
  • Is there strong institutional commitment (e.g., co-funding) to support the continuity of the fellow’s research and training?

Note: Investigators planning to submit an application in response to this NOSI are strongly encouraged to contact their NCI Program Directors of the parent award before writing and submitting their administrative supplement applications to determine appropriateness for this program.