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NHLBI Announces Plan to Fund a Limited CARDIA Year 35 Exam

September 20, 2017

As previously reported on this Digital Forum (, an NHLBI working group comprised of selected members of the NHLBI Advisory Council and Board of External Experts presented a set of seven recommendations for transforming population research to the NHLBI Council in 2014.  The recommendations were subsequently published in 2015 (Roger VL et al. Strategic Transformation of Population Studies: Recommendations of the Working Group on Epidemiology and Population Sciences From the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory Council and Board of External Experts. Am J. Epidemiol 2015;181(6):363-367).  In its Recommendation 7, the working group advised the NHLBI to “implement a competitive peer review–based model for its portfolio of large epidemiologic and population studies,” in which funding decisions for study infrastructure are separated from peer review for innovative research content.

Consistent with that Recommendation 7, the NHLBI recently announced its intent to fund a limited Year 35 clinic exam cycle in the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) Study.  (See NIH Guide Notice NOT-HL-17-536;  The exam, which will take place from approximately June 1, 2020 through July 31, 2021, will serve as a platform for investigator-initiated, peer-reviewed, independently funded exam components that will enrich the exam data collection with additional hypothesis-driven content. The intent of Notice NOT-HL-17-536; is to allow ample time for interested researchers to comply with CARDIA requirements and develop NIH grant applications to fund exam components addressing innovative research questions in CARDIA.

Table 1 summarizes timing considerations for submitting grant applications proposing exam components for CARDIA’s Year 35 clinic exam cycle.  (See for more information about NIH grant application cycles, due dates, etc.)

Potential applicants may wish to consider the following:

  • Resubmission (A1) applications received by the October 2019 Council Cycle (Cycle I) standard due dates would enable an award approximately 6 months before the CARDIA Year 35 clinic exam cycle begins.
  • Receipt of new (A0) applications by the May 2019 Council Cycle (Cycle III) standard receipt dates would allow time for review and potential funding before the Year 35 exam cycle begins but receipt, review, and potential funding of resubmission (A1) applications for the following January 2020 Council Cycle (Cycle II) may not allow adequate preparation time before the exam begins.
  • New (A0) applications received by the October 2019 Council Cycle (Cycle I) standard receipt dates would allow time for review and potential funding but would not allow adequate time for submission, review, and funding of a resubmission (A1) application until after the Year 35 exam is underway.

Therefore, for grant applications received after the October 2019 Council Cycle (Cycle II) standard due dates (due dates between January 25 and May 7, 2019), applicants will need to consider timing of their data collection relative to that of the planned exam and any additional time and associated costs that may be required to complete their exam components as proposed.

If you are interested in partnering with CARDIA in developing and obtaining funding for innovative content for the upcoming exam, please carefully read the NIH Guide Notice (NOT-HL-17-536; and visit the CARDIA website ( for its ancillary studies policies and other relevant information.

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