Pilot Grant Program

We are excited to offer annual pilot grants of up to $30,000 to interested applicants in support of scientific person and supply costs. It is our hope that the development and implementation of these pilot projects will test novel hypotheses in the areas of autoimmune and chronic inflammatory disease research.

  • Projects must be human-oriented, and relate to autoimmune or chronic inflammatory disease research
  • Primary objective of the project is first federal/national grant submission for human-oriented autoimmune or systemic inflammatory disease research specific aim or grant submission for new human-oriented research direction/assay system
  • Secondary objective of the project is results publication
  • Projects can include hypothesis testing/proof-of-concept, power analysis, human assay development
  • Projects do require pre-award, post-award, and post-pilot completion presentations

Projects require a final written report after completion for publication. Projects require progress report oral presentation at CADRe monthly meeting after 6 months of award start, and at the close of the award.

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Pilot Grant Recipients

Congratulations to the recipients of this year's pilot grants – Dr. Tanya Freedman and Dr. Justin Spanier!


Dr. Freedman's project plans to test a particular enzyme for expression in juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) patients, the results of which could lead to an effective blockade of chronic joint inflammation, prevent the chances of chronic infection, and develop safer therapies for treatment of JIA.


Dr. Spanier will examine the contribution of certain lymphocytes towards the onset of autoimmune disease, with the goal of developing biomarkers to identify at-risk patients. Dr. Spanier also plans to test the effects of immunotherapies on these lymphocytes, in order to determine if their development in the body might be slowed or prevented.