Research Centers in Minority Institutions Program (RCMI)
The Research Centers in Minority Institutions Program (RCMI) develops and strengthens the research infrastructure of minority institutions by expanding human and physical resources for conducting basic, clinical, and translational research. It provides grants to institutions that award doctoral degrees in the health professions or health-related sciences and have a significant enrollment of students from racial and ethnic minority groups that are underrepresented in biomedical sciences.
The RCMI program serves the dual purpose of bringing more racial and ethnic minority scientists into mainstream research and promoting minority health research because many of the investigators at RCMI institutions study diseases that disproportionately affect minority populations.
The former home of the RCMI program, the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), was dissolved by Public Law 112-74 in December 2011. As a result, the RCMI Program was transferred to the NIMHD.
The RCMI program currently supports four activities, with eligibility and program requirements varying for each:
- RCMI Centers
° G12 Centers
° U54 Centers
- RCMI Infrastructure for Clinical and Translational Research (RCTR)
- Clinical Research Education and Career Development (CRECD)
- RCMI Translational Research Network (RTRN)
The RCMI G12 Centers awards build capacity for basic biomedical and behavioral research at academic institutions with a focus on institutional resource development, such as supporting core research facilities and staff, purchasing advanced instruments, or minor laboratory renovations or alterations. Applicants must identify specific research foci, such as neuroscience, pharmacology, cancer, HIV/AIDS, structural biology, immunology, or bioengineering. While the RCMI program is designed to allow maximum flexibility in requesting resources, at least two-thirds of the requested funds must be directed to multi-user resources rather than individual research projects.
- Develop research infrastructure to enhance institutional biomedical research capacity
- Enable investigators to become more successful in obtaining competitive extramural support for the conduct of biomedical and/or behavioral research, particularly on diseases that disproportionately impact minority populations
- Foster environments conducive to professional development in the biomedical sciences
Applicant institutions must demonstrate that they serve a high concentration of individuals from racial and ethnic groups that have been shown by the National Science Foundation to be underrepresented in biomedical research (African Americans, American Indians and Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders, Hispanic Americans).They must be minority institutions that award doctorate degrees in the health professions or the sciences related to health, and must demonstrate that the majority of the health professional graduates provide health related care to minority communities.
The RCMI Infrastructure for Clinical and Translational Research (RCTR) awards support the development of infrastructure required to conduct clinical and translational research at RCMI institutions. This infrastructure may include outpatient clinical research resources, biostatistical support, core laboratories, or facilities to support patient-oriented investigations such as community-based research.
The RCTR awards use cooperative agreements that encourage awardees to collaborate with other institutions, especially to facilitate multidisciplinary training and career development for clinical and translational scientists.Goals
- Facilitate and broaden opportunities for clinical and translational research activities focused on minority health and/or health disparities in these institutions
- Foster collaborations and partnerships with other institutions
- Improve efficiency in the management of clinical and translational research
- Enhance professional development of researchers
- Develop synergy between clinical and translational research activities in other NIMHD training awards
- Facilitate participation in the RCMI Translational Research Network consortium
The Clinical Research Education and Career Development (CRECD) awards help minority-serving institutions develop and implement curriculum-dependent degree programs to train doctoral and postdoctoral candidates in clinical research. The awards provide didactic training and mentored clinical research experiences to early-stage investigators.
CRECD awards aim to support creative and innovative research education programs that promote the development of well-trained clinical researchers who can lead clinical and translational research. Supported programs must lead to a Master of Science in Clinical Research or a Master of Public Health in a clinically relevant area.
The CRECD program is funded by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, the National Institute on Aging, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, and the National Institute on Drug Abuse.Goals
- Expand the national capability to improve diversity for research in the health sciences by developing the research workforce in clinical and translational sciences
- Develop a diverse group of clinical researchers who have the necessary knowledge and skills to pursue clinical research and can become part of translational and/or patient-oriented research, particularly on diseases that disproportionately impact minority populations
Applicant institutions must demonstrate that their historical mission is to educate individuals from racial and ethnic groups that have been shown by the National Science Foundation to be underrepresented in biomedical research (African Americans, American Indians and Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders, and Hispanic Americans). They must be minority institutions that award doctorate degrees in the health professions or the sciences related to health, and must demonstrate that the majority of the health professional graduates provide health related care to minority communities.
The eligible minority institutions must include medical, dental, nursing, or pharmacy schools accredited to award master’s and doctoral graduate degrees; or research institutions with graduate education programs that have ongoing clinical research and clinical research training programs.
The institution must be accredited to award a Masters in Clinical Research or Masters of Public Health in a clinically relevant area or demonstrate the commitment and capability to develop a core curriculum leading to an accredited Master of Science in Clinical Research degree or an accredited Master of Public Health degree in a clinically relevant area.
The RCMI Translational Research Network (RTRN) is a national consortium comprised of clinical and translational researchers from RCMI Centers working in collaboration with investigators from other academic health centers, community health providers, community organizations, and a central Data and Technology Coordinating Center that provides secure web and data sharing tools. Through linking these various groups, RTRN provides opportunities for multi-site clinical and translational research among minority-serving and other collaborating institutions throughout the nation to focus their collective efforts on addressing health disparities.
By providing computer-based tools for analyzing and managing clinical research data, recruiting for clinical trials, and sharing information with patients, the network enables clinical and translational researchers to collaborate more efficiently with each other and with their communities.
The program encourages the sharing of resources and expertise related to diseases that disproportionately affect minorities and other medically underserved populations, such as cancer, diabetes, infant mortality, HIV/AIDS, and renal and cardiovascular diseases.Goals
- Increase the efficiency of clinical and translational research through a single network that leverages shared infrastructure for NIH studies
- Facilitate study participant recruitment and retention
- Increase the efficiency of the implementation and dissemination of research advances to improved health outcomes
Eligibility for this FOA is limited to those institutions currently funded via the Research Centers in Minority Institution (RCMI) Infrastructure for Clinical and Translational Research (RCTR) and/or the Research Centers in Minority Institutions (RCMI) G12 Centers programs.