Office of Research Training, Diversity, and Disparities Newsletter, November/December 2020

What’s New at NIDA

NIDA Career Workshop Recap

NIDA hosted a virtual Career Workshop on November 9th, 2020 for Graduate Students, Postdocs, and Early Stage Investigators (and many Mentors!) in addiction science. We were pleased to reach over 1,000 attendees! If you missed the workshop, a recording of the event will be posted on the Career Workshop site soon.

During the plenary session, NIDA Director Dr. Nora Volkow discussed current news and research in the addiction field, especially as it related to COVID-19. The keynote speaker was Dr. Yasmin Hurd from the Addiction Institute at Mount Sinai, who shared her inspirational career journey and perspective on ignoring rules on her pathway to brain discovery. Drs. Katrina Foster and Albert Avila discussed NIDAs Diversity Initiatives, and emphasized NIDAs priority in fostering a more diverse and inclusive field. Drs. Holly Moore and Keisher Highsmith spoke on advances in Women and Sex/Gender research and inclusion.

Following the plenary session, there were three breakout sessions that focused on funding opportunities available to Graduate StudentsPostdocs, and Early Stage Investigators. Program Officers from NIDA emphasized the importance of contacting NIDA Program Staff or the Office of Research Training if you plan to apply for funding. Through the interactive Q&A they answered questions from participants on eligibility, the review process, application tips, and many more.

Our goal is that NIDAs career events are best suited to our applicants’ needs as much as possible. If you attended the event, please respond to this brief post-event survey by December 31st, 2020. This valuable feedback will help further improve future events. We thank all the presenters and participants for making this such a great event!

Program Updates

The NIDA Diversity Supplement Program Now Supports Postbaccalaureates

The NIDA Diversity Supplement Program is now accepting applications from postbaccalaurates! This new policy will allow for NIDA to reach earlier in the career pipeline as a way to support underrepresented minorities who are still working towards transitioning to graduate school. Visit the NIDA Diversity Supplement Instructions for How to Apply and Frequently Asked Questions for more NIDA-specific application information. For questions about the NIDA Diversity Supplement Program application process please contact Dr. Angela Holmes at

The Research Education Experiences R25 Updates  

The Providing Research Education Experiences to Enhance Diversity in the Next Generation of Substance Use and Addiction Scientists (Clinical Trials Not Allowed) R25 is also now accepting applications from postbaccalaurates! This Funding Opportunity Announcement now emphasizes institutional commitment to diversity by requiring an Enhancing Biomedical Workforce statement in addition to the Diversity Statement. For questions about this PAR-20-236, please contact Dr. Albert Avila at

Career Development Spotlight: Dr. Mariano Kanamori

The NIDA ORTDD would like to congratulate Dr. Mariano Kanamori, a former participant of the 2015 NIDA Grant Writing and Research Development Workshop for receiving his first R01 grant! We would like to share Dr. Kanamori’s inspiring journey with the NIDA research training community.

Dr. Mariano Kanamori

“I am a Latino epidemiologist whose research goal is the reduction of HIV and substance misuse in underserved Latino populations.  My interest in public health started in 1992 when I worked at PRISMA, an NGO in Lima, Peru, providing nutritional and HIV prevention education to people living in very poor circumstances.  I knew then that I wanted a career where I could improve the health and quality of life of underserved communities. I will always be grateful for the NIDA Grant Writing and Research Development Workshop I attended in 2015. The knowledge I gained at that workshop allowed me to substantially improve the K99/R00 proposal I submitted to NIDA the following year, which allowed me to develop a Spatially-Explicit Social Network Model capable of identifying how network structures and interactions blend sexual risk networks of Latinos and non-Latinos, and how sexual risk and drug use networks overlap. During my R00, I also completed a randomized social network-based HIV prevention intervention for Latina farmworkers who misuse substances. My subsequent projects have all built on these core areas, expanding research ideas or seeking to help new populations. In my recently received R01 from NIMH, which expands my R00 work, I will bank specimens for a new line of research to examine how substance misuse influences biological network structures based on levels of PrEP uptake and adherence assessed with Tenofovir-diphosphate (TFV-DP) markers. My NIDA R00 also opened the opportunity for a new line of high impact biomedical HIV prevention programs, as part of the Federal EHE Initiative: 1) FINISHING HIV, a biomedical HIV prevention program that uses four tailored network-based strategies (social, parks, radio and pharmacy) to reach large numbers of Latinos; 2) DiversiPrEP, designed to guide the large-scale implementation of a client-centered PrEP service model with telehealth through HRSA-funded clinics serving Latino populations across the US; and 3) a spatially temporal system with a social network component to plan targeted deployment of mobile PrEP clinic services (PI: Doblecki-Lewis; Co-I: Kanamori). My approach to research is collaborative—involving mentors, colleagues and students. I would like to acknowledge the support, advice and guidance of Drs. Aria Crump, Peter Hartsock and Albert Avila, who inspire me to do the same for the next generation of Public Health professionals.”

Congratulations to NIDA Diversity Supplement Fiscal Year 2020 Awardees!

We would like to congratulate the awardees of NIDA Diversity Supplements for Fiscal Year 2020! The goal of the Diversity Supplement is to help bridge postbaccalaureates, graduate/medical students, postdoctoral students, and ESIs from underrepresented backgrounds into independent research careers in substance use and addiction. See below for a full list of FY2020 Diversity Supplement awardees.

Diversity Supplement Awardees FY20

NIDA Funding Opportunities

Dr. Stephen Katz

Stephen I. Katz Early Stage Investigator Research Grant Program

Dr. Stephen I. Katz led the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases from 1995 until his passing in 2018. Dr. Katz was a talented physician scientist, NIH leader, and civil servant throughout his career who was profoundly dedicated to mentoring and training future scientists. In his memory, NIH recently announced the publication of Funding Opportunity Announcements for the Stephen I. Katz Early Stage Investigator Research Project Grant program (PAR-21-038 and PAR-21-039). ESIs may apply for this new opportunity to support their innovative ideas if they are proposing research that is a change in direction from their past work and experience, and for which they have no preliminary data. In addition, ESIs would also be able to pursue a new direction through this program. For example, exploring a new approach, testing a new technique, using a new methodology, or even investigating a new paradigm in biomedicine. The first due date for applications is January 26, 2021.  Be sure to read the entire funding opportunity announcement before applying and this additional guidance for prospective applicants.

HEAL PIs can now Apply for a NIDA Diversity Supplement through a New NOSI

A recent Notice of Special Interest to Encourage Eligible NIH HEAL Initiative Awardees to Apply for PA-21-071 Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research encourages eligible grant and cooperative agreement awardees in the HEAL Initiative community to apply for administrative supplements. Principle Investigators should apply through the HEAL Diversity Supplement Funding Opportunity Announcement. PIs or Candidates/Trainees are encouraged to contact Michele Rankin, Ph.D., Training Director in the NIDA Office of Science Policy and Communications, prior to submission of an application by phone (301-480-3832) or by email ( to discuss important eligibility and timeline considerations and HEAL specific requirements.

Administrative Supplements to Promote Research Continuity and Retention

Are you experiencing a critical life event that has the potential to impact your research progress or productivity? This NIH program may be an option for you. The goal this administrative supplement is to support the transition and retention of investigators from mentored career development to research independence and to minimize departures from biomedical workforce at this important career stage. Researchers with active selected K awards or R project grants are eligible to apply. For more information about eligibility and how to apply, contact Dr. Lindsey Friend at

Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics RADx

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) launched the Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics (RADx) initiative to speed innovation in the development, commercialization, and implementation of technologies for COVID-19 testing.

The RADx initiative is a national call for scientists and organizations to bring their innovative ideas for new COVID-19 testing approaches and strategies. NIDA is participating in several Funding Opportunity Announcements related to RADx. For a full list of these FOAs, visit the NIH Guide to Grants and Funding. See all currently funded RADx projects.

Don’t forget! New Fellowship (F) and Career Development (K) awards are released on a continuous basis. For more information on NIDA Funding Opportunities, visit the Funding Opportunities at NIDA webpage. For a full list of NIH training, fellowship, career development, and research education funding opportunities including parent announcements, please see the NIH Guide to Grants and Funding.

COVID-19 Updates

The COVID-19 pandemic is a rapidly evolving situation. Visit the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Information for NIH Applicants and Recipients of NIH Funding webpage for the latest information and guidance about programs in place to help with NIH projects. This webpage provides information about proposal submission, award management, human subjects, clinical trials, animal welfare, peer review, and lists funding opportunities related specifically to COVID-19. We encourage you to check this webpage often for updates and don’t hesitate to reach out to your Program Officer or our office if you have questions.