COVID-19 Research Opportunity


In order to address the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its profound health consequences, the Department of Medicine (DOM) invites proposals for a special, one-time COVID-19-related research funding opportunity. The program is intended to broadly support COVID-19-related research from bench to bedside and encourages the use of human biospecimens from the Duke University School of Medicine COVID-19 Biorepository

Award Information

  • Collaborations are encouraged to address the challenges posed by COVID-19 and to reflect key principles of our DOM Research Strategic Plan.  This includes engaging faculty across multiple divisions within the DOM and/or including collaborators from centers/institutes and other departments within the SOM.
  • Proposals must include a detailed budget that ranges from $25,000 to $100,000 (in direct costs) based on scope of work proposed. Depending on the number of meritorious applicants and their budgets, the Review Committee will determine how many total proposals will be funded. Funds can be used to cover faculty or staff salary support and other research-related expenses.
  • The project plan should be accomplished within one year from date of award. Proposals should include a clear timeline and plan for completion. Funds remaining at the end of the project period will be returned to the Department. No timeline extensions will be provided.

Eligibility Criteria

  • The principle applicant must have a primary faculty appointment in the Department of Medicine to be considered for funding.
  • Junior faculty and faculty from under-represented racial and ethnic groups are encouraged to apply.

Project Details

  • The use of the Duke SOM COVID-19 Biorepository is encouraged for the research proposals. For investigators planning an application using this resource should contact Dr. Chris Woods, PI for the biorepository, for input and LOS.
  • Projects in any area, including basic, clinical or translational, will be considered.
  • Prior to start of any research, appropriate human subjects and/or animal certifications will be required.
  • We strongly encourage cross departmental collaboration, cross divisional collaboration, and cross science collaboration.
  • Applicants can utilize Maren Olsen, PhD, for suggestions to address statistical needs and Armando Bedoya, MD, for suggestions to address data science needs.

Application Process

Applications should contain all of the items listed below:

  • Face Page
  • Project Abstract
  • Key Personnel
  • Table of Contents
  • Budget (not to exceed $100,000 in direct support)
  • Budget Justification
  • Biographical Sketch
  • Facilities/Resources

Research Plan is limited to 3 pages.

  • Background Information – ½ page
  • Significance/Impact – ½ page
  • Scientific Approach, including details of proposed statistical analysis and power - 2 pages
  • References – up to 1 page (not included in 3 page limit)

Application form

Please download the application form (an editable .doc file), complete it and save as one PDF file to be uploaded in the submission form below.

Submission form

Open the online form to submit your application.

Review Process

  • Initial review by DOM Research Administration leadership to ensure the proposed project meets administrative requirements.
  • Peer review by a panel convened by the Chair of Medicine and Vice Chair for Research.
  • Proposals will be judged on scientific-merit, rigor, and quality of project and impact on COVID-19 related public health and disease.
  • Intent to complete reviews and provide funding decision by early June 2021 with awards to begin July 1, 2021.


  • Applications must be submitted electronically no later than May 1, 2021.


The Department of Medicine and the review panel will endeavor to maintain the confidentiality of all applicant intellectual property.

Project Contact

Saini Pillai, MBA
Program Coordinator
Department of Medicine, Chair’s Office