Specific Application Requirements

Applicants to the IMAT Program should pay careful attention to the following supplemental requirements stipulated in the IMAT RFAs:

Quantitative Performance Measure Requirement

Applications must include a specific section labeled “Performance Measures” as a part of the Research Strategy portion of the application. Performance Measures should be well described, quantitative, and scientifically justified. Performance measures are a means of judging the success of the R21 or R33 project. Specific aims may not be regarded as performance measures (unless they include quantitative end points). The specific aims describe the goals and intended path of the research. Quantitative performance measures are a way for the applicant show how they will determine if they have successfully reached the specified goals. In most cases, applicants should provide a performance measure for each specific aim. Performance measures should be clearly stated and presented in a quantitative manner, such as numerical specifications of sensitivity and specificity or a count of some desired or newly discovered molecule, etc. Several examples of quantitative performance measures follow:

  • Detection of a targeted cancer cell in 109 normal cells;
  • Demonstration that the measured analyte is highly correlated (Pearson correlation coefficient r >0.95) for a given human serum sample when analyzed on different days. This should include mean, standard deviation, and relative standard deviation for repeatability targets superior to next best approach (if applicable);
  • Reduction of sequence read errors to one in 5,000,000 base pairs;
  • Demonstration that the technology gives the same result in 95 out of 100 assays; and/or
  • Demonstration that the technology can be n-fold faster, or n-fold more sensitive, or n-fold more specific, etc than the current "gold standard" technology.

An application lacking quantitative performance measures as determined by the NCI program staff will be returned to the applicant without review.

Focus on Development of Cancer-Relevant Technologies

The proposed project must be focused on early-stage and advanced development of an innovative technology in a biologically relevant system. All projects proposed in response to the IMAT FOAs must (1) have the potential for substantial improvements over current approaches and/or add qualitatively new research capabilities, (2) offer novel capabilities that may be judged by appropriate experts as potentially transformative to research laboratory, edpidemiology, and/or clinical settings beyond providing incremental improvements to existing capabilities, and (3) include rigorous study design with a verifiable approach, which is based on well-defined performance measures.

Annual Meeting of IMAT Principal Investigators

An annual meeting of all investigators funded through this program will be held to share progress and research insights that may lead to further progress in the development of technologies for cancer research and clinical care for cancer patients. All investigators supported through the program are required to attend this meeting each year, lasting 2-3 days, unless otherwise notified by NCI program officials.

Reporting Requirement

IMAT awardees must submit statements as required in the NIH Grants Policy Statement. More information on post-award monitoring and reporting can be found on the NIH Grants & Funding page. 

A final progress report, invention statement, and Financial Status Report are required when an award is relinquished when a recipient changes institutions or when an award is terminated.