What Kind of Information Should I Include in My Application’s Resource Authentication Plan?


If you are submitting a research or career development application and plan to propose the use of key biological and/or chemical resources, then you need to address in your application how you intend to authenticate these resources.

For due dates between now and May 24, 2016, the authentication plan should be included as an additional attachment (not as part of the research strategy) and it should be brief – no more than one page is suggested. The plan should include a description of the methods proposed to authenticate key resources prior to use and at regular intervals, if appropriate. Key resources and the methods for authentication will vary by research field. For example, applicants proposing to use cell lines should describe the method they plan to use to verify the identity of the lines, which might include short tandem repeat (STR) profiling. Authentication data should not be included in the plan.

For due dates after May 25, 2016, you will be required to use the new version of the application forms (FORMS-D). The PHS 398 Research Plan and PHS 398 Career Development Award Supplemental forms included in FORMS-D application packages will have a specific attachment field called “Authentication of Key Biological and/or Chemical Resources” that you will use for this information.

If you do not propose the use of key biological and/or chemical resources, then a plan for authentication does not need to be included.

Learn more about rigor and transparency in your application from the grants.nih.gov page on rigor and reproducibility, and the NIH Guide notices specific to research (NOT-OD-16-011) and career development (NOT-OD-16-012) applications.

One comment

  1. It would be great if NIH gave investigators about a year to phase in all of the changes that they want to include. First would be sex as a biological variable and scientific premise. Then authentication of resources, then all the changes outlined here.
    The bottom line is that much of this information that is requested is vague without specific examples for investigators who write these darn grants to study. Also while I like the 12 page limitations, part of the issue with reproducibility in NIH grants and outstanding science manuscripts is page limitations.
    Also how will all these changes affect the final priority score made by reviewers? Again for the first year people’s scores should not be affected, rather these concerns should be placed under additional criteria for consideration.
    Sometimes I do think that NIH is helping the Congress kill more grants by making the work more cumbersome and less scientifically driven.

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