Seed Grants for ME/CFS Research

The Cornell Center for Enervating NeuroImmune Disease invites applications for seed funding for ME/CFS research (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, also called Chronic Fatigue Syndrome; CFS).  Support for funded projects, of up to $25,000, will be provided by an NIH-funded Cornell ME/CFS Center grant (U54AI178855) and by Cornell University.  The Aim of this funding program is to support growth in ME/CFS research on campus, including fostering new collaborations. Applications from new investigators and trainees (graduate, postdoctoral) are particularly encouraged.

Award details Up to $25,000 for one year.  Support is available for up to five awards.

Eligibility  P.I. applicants must be appointed within the Cornell Ithaca campus and can be graduate students, postdoctoral and research associates, as well as individuals who meet Cornell University eligibility requirements to serve as principal investigators on sponsored projects. Co-investigators at Weill Cornell Medicine are welcomed.

Timeline Application deadline – 5 PM, Feb 15th, 2024.  Notice of award – Mar 15th, 2024.  Funding term – 1st April, 2024-Mar 31st, 2025. For all successfully funded projects, a one-page progress report is required by Jan 20, 2025, which will be used, in part, to invite selected grantees to compete for an additional year of seed funding.

Application Process Applications should include the following (within a single PDF):

  • Cover page (1-page maximum) with name and contact information for Principal Investigator(s); title and list of co-PIs and collaborators
  • Research plan (3-page maximum; meeting NIH page-formatting requirements), including Abstract, Significance and Approach. An additional one-page maximum can be used for figures and brief figure legends. No page limit on the reference list.
  • Budget and budget justification (1-page maximum). Do not include indirect costs in the budget. No particular format needs to be used.
  • NIH-format biosketch for all PIs.
  • Send completed applications to the Center manager: Carl Franconi (

Use of Funds Funds are restricted to research expenses, core facility charges, and non-faculty personnel; they cannot be used to support travel, faculty salary, or equipment purchases. Funds to support non-faculty salary (or graduate student summer stipends) are permitted up to a maximum of $10,000.

Evaluation Criteria Scientific merit, potential impact and feasibility will be major review criteria.  Applicant qualifications and the potential for extramural funding will also be considered.  New investigators in ME/CFS research and/or new collaborations with current Cornell ME/CFS researchers are encouraged.

Inquiries We encourage inquiries concerning this funding opportunity (please contact Maureen Hanson ( and/or Andrew Grimson (  Educational materials about ME/CFS research at Cornell are available at the Center’s website.

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