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Proposals Sought for Round 4 of Grand Challenges Explorations - Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

$100,000 grants available for bold, unconventional ideas to address global health issues

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Phone: +1.206.709.3400

SEATTLE -- The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced today that it is now accepting proposals for Round 4 of Grand Challenges Explorations, an initiative to encourage bold and unconventional research on new global health solutions. Proposals are being accepted through November 2, 2009.

The program offers scientists, inventors, and entrepreneurs the chance to earn $100,000 grants to further their work. Projects showing success will have the opportunity to receive additional funding up to $1 million.

The topic areas for which proposals are being accepted for this round are:

  • Create New Ways to Protect Against Infectious Disease;
  • Create New Technologies for Contraception;
  • Create New Ways to Induce and Measure Mucosal Immunity;
  • Create Low-Cost Diagnostics for Priority Global Health Conditions.
One of the primary objectives of Grand Challenges Explorations is to involve scientists around the world who do not typically work in the health field and may have never applied for a grant before. This includes those with innovative ideas in Africa, Asia, and other parts of the developing world; people working in the private sector; and young investigators.

Some of the projects that have thus far received Grand Challenges Explorations funding include altering the malaria parasite genome to prevent mutations that result in drug resistance, using anaerobic gas to kill tuberculosis bacteria without harming surrounding tissue, and studying whether illuminating skin with a targeted laser before administering a vaccine can enhance immune response.

Grand Challenges Explorations uses an online, accelerated grant-making process. Applications are two pages, and preliminary data about the proposed research are not required. Full descriptions of the topic areas and the online application tool are available at the Grand Challenges in Global Health web site.

The foundation and an independent group of reviewers will select the most innovative proposals, and grants will be awarded within approximately four months from the proposal submission deadline.

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