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Drug Discovery Program

Grants to USA, Canada, and International Researchers
for Translational Drug Research to Treat Alzheimer's

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF)

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

11/09/18 5:00 PM EST Receipt


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Grants to USA, Canada, and International postdoctoral fellows, clinicians, and researchers based at nonprofits, universities, academic medical centers, and biotechnology companies for translational research on drug therapies for Alzheimer's and related dementias. LOIs are due April 13.

The Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) has long recognized the need to bridge the translational funding gap between early-stage drug discovery and clinical development for Alzheimer's disease, related dementias, and cognitive aging by supporting promising therapeutic approaches.

The ADDF's Drug Discovery RFP focuses on supporting programs that aim to:
-Advance novel lead molecules to the clinical candidate selection stage (defined as compounds suitable for IND-enabling studies); or
-Build preclinical evidence in relevant animal models for repurposed/repositioned drugs
-Repurposed refers to existing drugs that are approved for other diseases and conditions and repositioned refers to existing drugs that have entered clinical trials for other indications and have not yet been approved.

Funding Priorities:

Drug targets: Proposed molecular targets will be evaluated based on the strength of available evidence that links the target to the disease and demonstrates that modulating its biological activity will improve symptoms or modify disease progression. Targets will be assessed based on the following criteria:

-Is there human genetic evidence linking the target to the disease?
-Is the target expressed in disease-relevant regions of the brain (or where applicable, in the periphery) in humans and/or animal models?
-Are there changes in target mRNA/protein expression or activity in human disease specimens, and do they correlate with disease severity and cognitive functions?
-Does genetic and/or pharmacological manipulation of the target in disease-relevant in vitro (e.g., primary cultured neurons/glia or cells derived from patient iPSCs) or in vivo models alter disease phenotypes?
-Are there direct measures of target engagement that can be used experimentally and in humans?
-How is the target more compelling than other related targets that have been tested for the disease?

Current target areas of interest include, but are not limited to:
-Vascular function
-Mitochondria & metabolic function
-Synaptic activity & neurotransmitters

Stage of discovery: This RFP aims to support in vivo pharmacokinetics, dose-range finding, target engagement, in vivo efficacy, and/or preliminary rodent tolerability studies for novel therapeutics, including small molecules and biologics (e.g., antibodies, oligonucleotides, peptides, gene therapy), and for repurposed/repositioned drugs or natural products. Priority is given to novel drug programs that:

-Identified a lead molecule or series with in vitro potency (including secondary screens in relevant cell models), selectivity, and toxicity data
-Assessed the chemical structure of leads for structural liabilities
-Conducted in vitro ADME (absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion) characterization (e.g., solubility, microsomal stability, Caco-2, MDCK, CYP profiling)
-Possess novel composition of matter intellectual property

Priority is given to repurposed/repositioned drug programs that:
-Evaluated known side effects of the drug and how well they would be tolerated by the intended clinical population
-Identified a supplier that will provide sufficient quantities of the drug or compound to complete the study aims
-Demonstrate plans to develop novel intellectual property around the repurposing/repositioning strategy

For in vivo efficacy studies proposals should:
-Demonstrate blood-brain barrier penetration (if the intended target is in the CNS)
-Justify dosing administration and regimen with in vivo PK/PD data
-Include measures of target engagement

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 182778

Estimated Size of Grant:

The average grant award is $150,000 - $600,000 based on stage and scope of research.

Term of Contract:

Average grant duration is one year with potential for follow-on funding. Multi-year proposals can be considered.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Funding is open to researchers, clinicians, and postdoctoral fellows in the U.S. and worldwide working in:
-Academic medical centers and universities or nonprofits
-Biotechnology companies that demonstrate a clear need for nonprofit funding. Funding is provided through mission-related investments (MRIs) that require return on investment based upon scientific and/or business milestones. Existing companies and new spinouts are both eligible.

This RFP does not support anti-amyloid approaches (e.g., anti-amyloid aggregation, beta-amyloid vaccines, beta- or gamma-secretase inhibitors) and cholinesterase inhibitors.

This RFP does NOT support target identification, target validation, assay development, high-throughput and high-content screening, and lead optimization.

Pre-Application Information:

For studies requiring additional support, co-funding from other funding agencies or investors is encouraged.

It is highly recommended that you access the ADDF Funding Portal to begin the application process well in advance of any deadlines. Please note, new applicants should allow 1-2 business days for registration.

Letters of Intent and Full Proposals must be received by 5:00 PM EST on the deadline date.

-Letter of Intent: January 19, 2018
-Invited Full Proposal: February 9, 2018

-Letter of Intent: April 13, 2018
-Invited Full Proposal: May 11, 2018

-Letter of Intent: July 13, 2018
-Invited Full Proposal: August 10, 2018

-Letter of Intent: October 12, 2018
-Invited Full Proposal: November 9, 2018

Application Instructions:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply Online:

For program-related inquiries, please contact:

Lauren Friedman, PhD, Acting Director, Scientific Affairs

For application submission inquiries, please contact:

Grants and Mission-Related Investments Team

Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation
57 West 57th Street, Suite 904
New York, NY 10019


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

USA Territories: American Samoa (USA)   Guam (USA)   Puerto Rico (USA)   Virgin Islands (USA)   Northern Mariana Islands (USA)

USA Compact Free Associations: The Federated States of Micronesia (USA)   Marshall Islands (USA)   Republic of Palau (USA)

Canada: Alberta   British Columbia   Manitoba   New Brunswick   Newfoundland and Labrador   Northwest Territories   Nova Scotia   Nunavut   Ontario   Prince Edward Island   Quebec   Saskatchewan   Yukon


International country outside of the USA, Israel and Canada.