Amount:  up to $50,000
for one year with the opportunity to request a second year of support, contingent on project progress and participation in NPOD activities. Year 1 funding will start on January 1, 2023 and end on December 31, 2023.

Application Due Date: November 14, 2022 (5 PM CST)

The Nebraska Center for the Prevention of Obesity Diseases (NPOD) invites applications for its pilot grant competition.  The primary objective of this pilot grant program is to stimulate research in obesity research and/or signaling by nutrients or bioactive food compounds, and to enhance competitiveness in obtaining external support. Applications with a clinical research angle are of particular interest.



Applications from NPOD members and non-members will receive equal consideration. Previous and current NPOD project leaders are not eligible for pilot grant support, but applications from previous seed and pilot grant recipients will be considered. Collaborations across UNL and UNMC are encouraged. Only one proposal per principal investigator (PI) is permitted per competition. However, there is no limit on the number of proposals an applicant may participate in as a co-investigator. NPOD is particularly interested in projects that make use of NPOD’s research core facility, BORC (see It is expected that most pilot grant awards will be for wet lab and clinical research, but applications with a focus on bioinformatics are also encouraged. All required approvals (e.g., IRB, IACUC, IBC) must be obtained before funds are released. If required approvals are already available, include them with your submission documents. Applicants must be tenured faculty or faculty in tenure-leading appointments.



The application form for pilot grant awards is at the bottom of this website. Application forms can also be obtained from Verona Skomski, Administrative Coordinator, NPOD, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 316D Leverton Hall, Lincoln, NE 68583-0806, e-mail: 

The application is in the general format of an NIH R01 proposal, with different page limitations:

  • Biographical sketch (new NIH style, 5 page limit including other support)
  • Research plan (specific aims, background, preliminary results (if any), experimental plan, and a description of plans for future external funding applications not to exceed 4 single-spaced pages including figures and tables)
  • NIH style vertebrate animals and human research section (if applicable)
  • Statement regarding authentication of key reagents (one page recommended)
  • Documentation of biostatistical consultation (signature line last page of application)*
  • Bibliography (no page limit)

The margins must be 0.5 inches on all sides and use of Arial with a font size of 11 is required.

*NPOD requires all applicants for pilot grants to provide documentation of consultation with a biostatistician of their choice regarding experimental design, and recommend using NPOD’s bioinformatics and biostatistics coordinators, Drs. Kathy Hanford or Steve Kachman (see Documentation is to be provided by the biostatistician signing the signature line on the last page of the application.

The maximum budget will be $50,000 direct costs for Year 1. There is an opportunity for renewal (January 1, 2024 - May 31, 2024). Year 2 funding will be contingent upon satisfactory progress in the first year, a continuation request by the investigator, and availability of funds. F&A costs, salary support for faculty, and equipment are not allowed. Salary support for project personnel other than faculty is an allowable budget item. Budgets should be created using the standard UNL OSP template found at or the equivalent UNMC budget template. Include the Excel file with your submission.

Applications in pdf format must be received via email at and/or no later than 5 PM CST on November 14, 2022.



Pilot grant PIs will become NPOD members and are expected to attend monthly meetings and participate in NPOD events.  PIs will present their research progress at a monthly work-in-progress seminar of the NPOD, and to the external advisory committee during NPOD’s annual review meeting. In addition, PIs will be required to submit a report to NPOD in time for submission of the center’s annual report to NIH (typically in February). A final report documenting progress, publications, and grant proposals submitted and awarded, will be due to NPOD within 30 days after the end date of the pilot grant. PIs will acknowledge NPOD support (NIH P20GM104320) in publications and presentations resulting from their pilot grant. PIs are expected to submit an R01 grant proposal to NIH or a similar type of grant proposal to another federal agency no later than six months after the end date of the pilot grant.



The scientific merit of each proposal will be assessed by a panel of experts with no conflict of interest, appointed by the NPOD director. Awards will require approval by the NPOD’s external advisory board.  In the case of potential conflicts of interest, reviewers will be excused accordingly. The review criteria will follow NIH guidelines with the overall scientific merit of the proposal based on overall impact, significance, innovation, approach, investigators and environment. In addition, relevance of the proposal to the mission of NPOD will be assessed. The review will use the NIH scoring scale of 10-90. Decisions by NPOD are final. Successful applicants will be notified as soon as possible.  



Funding period starting January 1, 2023, until December 31, 2023.

Possible renewal: January 1, 2024

End: May 31, 2024