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NATIONAL EYE INSTITUTE (NEI)

Description:

The NEI supports research with respect to blinding eye diseases, visual disorders, mechanisms of normal visual function, preservation of sight, and the special health problems and requirements of individuals with impaired vision. Applications for all areas of vision research are encouraged. Examples that may be of interest to small businesses are provided below, but this list is not meant to be exhaustive. Phase IIB Competing Renewal Awards The NEI will accept Phase IIB SBIR Competing Renewal grant applications from NEI-supported Phase II SBIR awardees to continue the process of developing technologies that ultimately require federal regulatory approval or require extraordinary time and effort in the Research and Development phase. Such technologies include, but are not limited to, pharmacologic agents, biological products, and devices related to the mission of the NEI. This renewal grant should allow small businesses to reach a stage where interest and investment by third parties is more likely. The Competing Renewal application must be a logical extension of a previously completed NEI-supported Phase II (R44) SBIR grant. NEI grantees seeking SBIR Phase IIB Competing Renewal funding must submit an application within a period no later than the first six receipt dates following expiration of the previous Phase II budget period. Budgets up to $750,000 total costs per year and time periods up to two (2) years may be requested for this Phase IIB Competing Renewal opportunity. Potential applicants are strongly advised to contact Dr. Jerome Wujek (contact information provided below) before beginning the process of putting an application together. The following examples would make appropriate topics for proposed NEI SBIR Phase IIB Competing Renewal projects. These are meant for illustrative purposes only and are not exclusive of other appropriate activities: • Preclinical studies, including pharmacology and toxicology, beyond those conducted under the Phase I (R43) and initial Phase II (R44) grants. Some in vivo or in vitro studies would be expected to have been carried out in Phase I or the initial Phase II grant. • Completion of studies as required by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for Investigational New Drug (IND) or New Drug Application (NDA). • FDA-required pre-clinical and clinical safety and effectiveness studies of medical devices and tissue engineered products for an Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) or Pre-market Approval (PMA). • FDA-required evaluation of novel imaging approaches for diagnostic purposes. General Research Topics NEI is interested in providing support for the development of new technologies, strategies, research tools, reagents and methods that can be applied to basic and translational research which will benefit vision health. This encompasses research and development of innovative enabling technologies in areas of genomics, proteomics and nanotechnology. More specific topics include drug discovery, high throughput assays, drug delivery systems, gene therapy and cell-based therapies, development of in vitro and in vivo disease models, surgical devices and materials, telemedicine and teaching tools, and design and fabrication of new or improved ophthalmic instruments for diagnosis and treatment of eye disorders. Retinal Diseases Program Research and development of new therapeutic approaches for inflammatory and degenerative diseases and for inhibition of abnormal angiogenesis in the retina and choroid; development of better methods of diagnosing and treating diabetic retinopathy and other vascular diseases; development of non-invasive techniques for early diagnosis of macular degeneration and other retinal degenerative diseases; development of instruments and procedures for improved surgical management of retinal detachments; development of retinal prostheses to help restore visual function; development of methods for cell or tissue transplantation. Corneal Diseases Program Research and development of new therapeutic agents and drug delivery methods for the treatment of corneal injury, infection, dry eye and other ocular surface disorders; development of new biomaterials for corneal prostheses and corneal transplants; development of instruments and procedures for correcting the refractive power of the cornea and/or measuring the cornea's optical properties or other physiological properties. Lens and Cataract Program Research and development of new approaches in the post-operative management of cataract surgery; development of new surgical instruments for cataract extraction and new biomaterials for replacement of the natural lens; development of accommodative intraocular lenses. Glaucoma and Optic Neuropathies Program Research and development of new therapeutic agents, instruments, and procedures for the diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma; development of non-invasive methods to measure changes in the optic nerve head and retinal fiber layer. Strabismus, Amblyopia, and Visual Processing Program Research and development of new approaches to detect and treat strabismus and abmlyopia; development of new tools and techniques for vision screening; development of innovative techniques to study factors that facilitate regeneration and guidance of nerve fibers. Visual Impairment and Blindness Program Research and development of instruments and methods to better specify, measure, and categorize residual visual function; development and evaluation of optical, electronic, and other devices that meet the rehabilitative and everyday living needs of blind or visually-impaired persons. Myopia and Refractive Error Research and development of instruments and procedures for diagnosing or treating myopia; development of new or improved methods and materials for correcting the refractive power of the eye and/or measuring the eye's optical properties or other physiological properties; new materials and manufacturing processes for eyeglasses and contact lenses. Additional Information The NEI's programs are described in more extensive detail in documents which are available from the Institute. For additional information about the research programs of the NEI, please visit our home page at http://www.nei.nih.gov. For more information on research topics, contact: Jerome Wujek, Ph.D. Research Resources Officer Division of Extramural Research National Eye Institute Suite 1300, 5635 Fishers Lane Bethesda, MD 20892 National Eye Institute 301-451-2020, Fax: 301-496-2297 Email: wujekjer@nei.nih.gov For administrative and business management questions, contact: Mr. William Darby Grants Management Officer Division of Extramural Research National Eye Institute Suite 1300, 5635 Fishers Lane Bethesda, MD 20892 National Eye Institute 301-451-2020, Fax: 301-496-9997 Email: wwd@nei.nih.gov
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