Oral Diseases and Disorders Research


To improve oral, dental and craniofacial health through performing and supporting basic, translational, and clinical research; conducting and funding research training and career development programs to ensure an adequate number of talented, well-prepared, and diverse investigators; coordinating and assisting relevant research and research-related activities among all sectors of the research community; and promoting the timely transfer of knowledge gained from research and its implications for health to the public, health professionals, researchers, and policy-makers. 1. The Behavioral and Social Sciences (BSS) Research Program supports basic and applied BSS research to promote oral health, to prevent oral diseases and related disabilities, and to improve management of craniofacial conditions, disorders and injury. 2. The Clinical and Practice-Based Research Program supports cross-sectional descriptive, case-control, prospective cohort and retrospective studies of dental, oral, and craniofacial diseases and disorders. The NIDCR-supported National Dental Practice-Based Research Network is a program in which national oral health studies are conducted in dental practices on topics of importance to practitioners and their patients. 3. The Clinical Trials Program supports improving oral health with high-quality evidence derived from well-executed Phase I, II, III, and IV clinical trials. 4. The Data Science, Computational Biology and Bioinformatics Program focuses on challenges in integrating and interpreting diverse and high-volume data to better understand dental, oral, and craniofacial conditions and their health consequences including the areas of bioinformatics, data science, computational biology and computational genomics, and systems biology approaches to dental, oral, and craniofacial research. 5. The Dental Materials and Biomaterials Program supports development of innovative approaches to restore tissue function by replacement and/or enhancement of dental, oral and craniofacial tissues compromised by trauma or disease. NIDCR encourages basic and translational extramural research in dental materials, medical devices, biosensors, imaging, dental implants, biocompatibility of dental materials, and biomaterials for craniofacial restoration and reconstruction. 6. The Developmental Biology and Genetics program supports basic and translational research to better understand the development of craniofacial structures from the early embryonic specification of the neural crest through the later development of teeth and craniofacial sutures. This program also supports research into the genetic and environmental contributions to craniofacial disorders, particularly their study in model organisms. 7. The Health Disparities Research Program supports studies that: provide a better understanding of the basis of oral health disparities and inequities; develop and test interventions tailored/targeted to underserved populations; seek to understand a broadened array of determinants of disparities/inequities in oral health status and care at multiple levels; take a holistic, social ecological, multi-level interventional approach designed to have a meaningful impact on oral health status and quality of life of vulnerable and underserved populations. 8. The HIV/AIDS and Oral Health Research Program supports extramural basic, translational and clinical research on HIV/AIDS to advance understanding of the underlying molecular, cellular, immunological and genetic mechanisms of HIV infection, the development of oral co-morbidities associated with HIV/AIDS, and the effects of HIV treatments on oral and dental tissues. 9. The Microbiology Program supports basic research examining the role of the oral microbiota (comprising bacteria, archaea, fungi and viruses) in dental health and disease as well as preclinical studies aimed at developing new prevention and treatment options for dental infections. Topics include examining the oral microbiota through studies in microbial ecology, physiology and genetics; polyomic technologies (genomics, metagenomics and systems biology); mechanisms of microbial virulence and pathogenesis; and classical prevention and treatment strategies for combating infectious disease. 10. The Mineralized Tissue Physiology Program supports basic and translational science research on craniofacial skeletal biology and pathobiology, and pharmacogenetics, and promotes interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches to advance the understanding of normal and abnormal processes underlying oral, dental, and craniofacial diseases and disorders. 11. The Neuroscience of Orofacial Pain and Temporomandibular Disorders Program supports basic, translational, and clinical research on: orofacial pain and neuropathies, temporomandibular joint and muscle disorders, development of biomarkers for diagnostics and prognostics, and development of therapeutics. 12. The Oral and Salivary Cancer Biology Program supports basic and translational research to improve detection and treatment of cancers of the oral cavity, pharynx, and salivary glands. Basic research focuses on susceptibilities and mechanisms that influence tumor initiation, promotion, and progression. Translational research focuses on development of innovative biomarkers, novel diagnostic technologies, and appropriate human specimens to better characterize cancers and improve medical decision making and treatment response evaluation. 13. The NIDCR research training and career development programs span the career stages of scientists, supporting training for basic, clinical, behavioral, and other research related to the NIDCR mission. 14. The Salivary Biology and Immunology Program encourages basic and translational research that furthers our understanding of the biology of saliva and salivary gland, immunology of oral diseases, and oral manifestations of systemic and infectious diseases; develops new tools and technologies to address challenges in these areas, and explores pathways toward commercialization and therapeutics. 15. The Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Program supports basic and translational research on employing bioengineering- and stem cell biology- based approaches for the reconstruction, repair, and regeneration of dental, oral, and craniofacial (DOC) tissues damaged because of disease or injury. The goal of this program is to advance engineering of biocompatible DOC tissue constructs and their functional integration into the host tissue microenvironment, and to support efforts aimed at healing and regeneration of endogenous host tissues. 16. The Translational Genetics and Genomics Program supports research designed to identify the genetic and molecular mechanisms underlying dental, oral, and craniofacial diseases and health. 17. The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program seeks to increase private sector commercialization of innovations derived from Federal research and development; to increase small business participation in Federal research and development; and to foster and encourage participation of socially and economically disadvantaged small business concerns and women-owned small business concerns in technological innovation. 18. The Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR)STTR program seeks to stimulate and foster scientific and technological innovation and foster technology transfer through cooperative research and development carried out between small business concerns and research institutions; to increase private sector commercialization of innovations derived from Federal research and development; and to foster and encourage participation of socially and economically disadvantaged small business concerns and women-owned small business concerns in technological innovation.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
B - Project Grants
Program Accomplishments
Not applicable.
Public Health Service Act, Title IV, Section 301, Public Law -78-410
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Research Project Grants: Scientists at universities, medical and dental schools, hospitals, laboratories, and other public or private nonprofit and for-profit institutions. NRSA and career development awards: (1) Nonprofit domestic organizations may apply for institutional awards. (2) Individual candidates or applicants must arrange sponsorship by a public or nonprofit private institution having staff and facilities appropriate to the proposed research training program. (3) All awardees must be citizens, or non-citizen nationals, of the United States or have been admitted to the United States for permanent residence, except for K99/R00 and T90/R90 grants. (4) To be eligible, postdoctoral NRSA and career development awardees must have a professional or scientific degree (M.D., Ph.D., D.D.S., D.V.M., Sc.D., D.Eng., or equivalent domestic or foreign degree). Institutional applicants must be able to provide the staff and facilities suitable for the proposed research training. SBIR and STTR grants: Can be awarded only to domestic small business concerns that meet the following criteria: 1) Is organized for profit, with a place of business located in the United States, which operates primarily within the United States or which makes a significant contribution to the United States economy through payment of taxes or use of American products, materials or labor; 2) Is in the legal form of an individual proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company, corporation, joint venture, association, trust or cooperative, except where the form is a joint venture, there must be less than 50 percent participation by foreign business entities in the joint venture; 3) Be a concern which is more than 50% directly owned and controlled by one or more individuals (who are citizens or permanent resident aliens of the United States), other business concerns (each of which is more than 50% directly owned and controlled by individuals who are citizens or permanent resident aliens of the United States), or any combination of these; no single venture capital operating company, hedge fund, or private equity firm may own more than 50% of the concern, 4) Has, including its affiliates, not more than 500 employees, and 5) meets the other regulatory requirements found in 13 C.F.R. Part 121. For STTR awards, the small business must "partner" with a research institution in a cooperative research and development project . In both Phase I and Phase II for both SBIR and STTR, the research must be performed in the U.S. and its possessions. To be eligible for funding, all grant applications must be evaluated for scientific merit and program relevance by a peer scientific review group and the National Advisory Dental and Craniofacial Research Council.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Health professionals, graduate students, undergraduate students, health professional students, scientists, researchers, and any nonprofit or for-profit organization, company or institution engaged in biomedical research.
Research Project Grants: Applications must include the specific aims (objectives) of the research, background and significance, research design and methods, investigator qualifications, innovation, approach/methodology, and environment/resources for the proposed project. NRSA and career development awards: (1) Individual Award Candidates: the applicant's academic record, research experience, citizenship, institutional sponsorship, proposed research area, and plan for training, must be included in the application. (2) Institutional Award Candidates: the application must include the objectives, methodology, and resources for the research training program, the research qualifications and experience of participating faculty in training students and fellows, and the criteria to be used in selecting individuals for support. Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-87 for State and Local Governments. Costs for for-profit organizations are determined in accordance with the Federal Acquisition Regulations Subpart 31.2. For other than State and Local Government grantees, costs will be determined by Health and Human Services (HHS) Regulations 45 CFR, Part 74, Subpart Q. For SBIR and STTR grants, the applicant organization (small business) must present an idea in the research plan that has potential for commercialization and furnish evidence that scientific competence, experimental methods, facilities, equipment, and funds requested are appropriate to carry out the plan.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is not applicable.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Applications for Federal assistance must be submitted electronically through Grants.gov (http://www.grants.gov) using the SF424 Research and Related (R&R) forms and the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/forms.htm). A registration process through Grants.gov is necessary before submission. Applicants are strongly encouraged to start the registration process at least four weeks prior to the applications submission date.
Award Procedure
All accepted grant applications competing for research project grants, career development awards, and NSRA awards are reviewed by two advisory groups. Primary review is conducted by an initial review group composed of extramural peer scientists, and secondary review by the National Advisory Dental and Craniofacial Research Council (NADCRC). Secondary review of NRSA fellowship applications is conducted by NIDCR staff rather than by the NADCRC. All accepted SBIR/STTR applications are evaluated for scientific and technical merit by an appropriate initial review group and by the NADCRC. All applications receiving a priority score compete for available SBIR/STTR set-aside funds on the basis of scientific and technical merit and commercial potential of the proposed research, program relevance, and program balance among the areas of research.
Contact the headquarters or regional location, as appropriate for application deadlines
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
More than 180 days. Research Project Grants, SBIR/STTR, and NSRA: From 6 to 9 months.
From 90 to 120 days. A Principal Investigator (PI) may question the technical or procedural aspects of the review of his/her application by communicating with the program staff of the Institute. A description of the NIH Peer Review Appeal procedures is available on the NIH home page: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/peer_review_process.htm#Appeals and in the Notice: https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-11-064.html.
More than 180 days. Grants: Applications for approval beyond the approved project period must be submitted at least 6 to 9 months in advance of the termination date. NRSA: Institutional Awards may be made up to 5 years. No individual may receive NIH/NRSA support at the postdoctoral level for more than 3 years, and total support of more than 6 years, unless a specific waiver is requested and approved.
How are proposals selected?
The primary criteria for evaluating grant applications include assessment of: (1) the scientific merit, significance and overall impact of the proposed study and its objectives; (2) the competency of the proposed investigator(s) to successfully pursue the project; (3) the innovation and novelty of the concepts, approaches, or methodologies; (4) the technical adequacy of the experimental design and approach; (5) the adequacy of the available proposed facilities and resources; (6) the necessity of the budget components requested in relation to the proposed project; and (7) the relevance and importance to the posted institute program objectives. Also evaluated, where applicable, but not scored are: (1) protections for human subjects; (2) inclusion of women, minorities, and children; (3) vertebrate animal welfare; and (4) adequate protection of research personnel and/or the environment, biosafety, biocontainment and the security of select agents; (5) resource sharing plans; (6) authentication of key biological and/or chemical resources, (7) budget and period of support. In addition, the following criteria will be used in considering the scientific and technical merit of SBIR/STTR Phase I grant applications: the potential of the proposed research for commercial application. Phase II grant applications will reviewed based upon the following criteria: (1) The degree to which the Phase I objectives were met and feasibility demonstrated; (2) the scientific and technical merit of the proposed approach for achieving the Phase II objectives; (3) the technological innovation, originality, or societal importance of the proposed research; and (4) the potential of the proposed research for commercial application. NRSA individual fellowship applications will be evaluated for: (1) overall impact/merit; (2) suitability of the applicant; (3) qualifications of the sponsor(s)/collaborator(s); (4) scientific merit of the research training plan; (5) training potential; and (6) institutional environment and commitment to training. NRSA institutional training grants are assessed for: (1) overall impact; (2) merit of the training program and institutional environment; (3) the experience and success of the training program directors, PIs, and mentors; (4) the trainee recruitment plan and selection; and (5) the training record of the program and/or institution. Career Development applications will be evaluated for: (1) overall impact; (2) qualifications of the candidate; (3) the career plan and career goals/objectives of the candidate; (4) scientific merit of the research plan. (5) qualifications of the mentor(s), consultant(s) and collaborator(s); and (5) institutional environment and commitment to career development.
How may assistance be used?
Research Project Grants and Cooperative Agreements: provide funds for salaries, equipment, supplies, travel, and other expenses associated with scientific investigation in the dental, oral and craniofacial health sciences. They are awarded to universities, colleges, medical and dental schools, hospitals, and other nonprofit and for-profit institutions. Awards include investigator-initiated project grants, exploratory and developmental grants, small grants, center grants, conference grants, and career development awards. Individual and institutional dual degree (DDS or DMD/PhD) awards provide support for research career development in both clinical and basic science. National Research Service Awards (NRSAs) provide support for research training in specified biomedical areas, and can be made to institutions to enable them to accept individuals for research training. Individuals who receive NRSAs may be obligated upon termination of the award to comply with service and payback provisions. SBIR Phase I grants (duration of approximately 6 months) provide support to establish the technical merit and feasibility of a proposed research effort that may lead to a commercial product or process. Phase II grants support the continuation of the research initiated in Phase I to further develop the commercial products or process initiated in Phase I. Only Phase I awardees are eligible to receive Phase II support. STTR Phase I grants (duration of typically 1 year) support cooperative efforts between small businesses and research institutes to determine the scientific and technical merit, and commercial feasibility of a product or process with potential for commercial application. Phase II funding is based on the results of the research initiated in Phase I and the scientific and technical merit, and commercial potential of the Phase II application.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Not applicable.
In addition, grants and cooperative agreements are subject to inspection and audits by DHHS and other Federal officials.
Expenditures and other financial records must be retained for 3 years from the day on which the grantee submits the last expenditure report for the report period.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formula is not applicable to this assistance listing.

Matching requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.

MOE requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Research Project Grants: Approval of a project includes a determination of support for the authorized project period (generally not to exceed 5 years). Awards to support the project are made on an annual basis. At the time of initial award, the grant provides funds for the conduct of the project during the first budget period (usually 12 months) and the Notice of Grant Award indicates the support recommended and expected to be made available for the remainder of the project beyond the approved project period, an application for renewal must be submitted in accordance with the deadline dates and instructions attached to the form. SBIR Phase I awards are generally for 6 months; Phase II awards normally are for 2 years. STTR Phase I awards are generally for 1 year; Phase II awards are for 2 years.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
None/Not specified.
Headquarters Office
Dr. Alicia Dombroski,
6701 Democracy Blvd.; MSC 4878
Bethesda, MD 20892 US
Phone: (301) 594-4890
Fax: (301) 480-8303
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Project Grants) FY 18$332,520,941.00; FY 19 est $319,557,000.00; FY 20 est $297,188,000.00; FY 17$310,249,153.00; FY 16$292,486,346.00; -
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
FY2017: research project grants: range $8042-$9,224,715, average $445,599; NRSA: range $363-$568,952, average $77,309; SBIR/STTR: range $27,916-$1,046,856, average $540,253; Career development: range $9,369-$346,329, average $134,492. FY2018: research project grants: range $7725-$9,105,814 average $454,884; NRSA: range $2027-$578,754, average $89,661; SBIR/STTR: range $145,566-$955,597, average $470,524; Career development: range $77,660-$232,667, average $139,132.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Grants: 42 CFR 66; 45 CFR 74; NIDCR Grants and Funding website (http://www.nidcr.nih.gov/GrantsAndFunding/), NIH Grants website (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/oer.htm). Grants will be available under the authority of and administered in accordance with the PHS Grants Policy Statement and Federal regulations at 42 CFR 52 and 42 USC 241; Omnibus Solicitation of the Public Health Service for Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Grant and Cooperative Agreement Applications. Omnibus Solicitation of the National Institutes of Health for Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Grant Applications.
Examples of Funded Projects
Not applicable.


Federal Grants Resources