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NCCIH Research Blog

NCCIH Priorities and Funding Opportunities for Clinical Research: Designs To Match the Stage of Research—an NCCIH Session at the ICIMH

April 25, 2016

Wendy J. Weber, N.D., Ph.D., M.P.H.

Wendy J. Weber, N.D., Ph.D., M.P.H.

Branch Chief

Clinical Research in Complementary and Integrative Health Branch

National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health

View biographical sketch

At NCCIH, we get many questions from investigators about funding opportunities for clinical research. Often these questions center on what NCCIH is looking for in clinical research applications.

To help clinical investigators identify the best funding opportunities for the research they want to pursue, NCCIH will lead a session at the upcoming International Congress on Integrative Medicine and Health (ICIMH) on funding opportunities and study designs for different stages of clinical research.

Human studies to examine the mechanisms, safety, and effects of natural products or mind and body interventions account for the majority of NCCIH’s research portfolio. As we’ll discuss in detail during the ICIMH session, NCCIH has a new emphasis on early clinical studies to provide pilot data that will inform the development and design of larger definitive trials.

Rigorous studies of complementary and integrative interventions require a careful approach to clinical research. Poorly designed and underpowered studies may result in missing an effect that could have important health implications. Or they could erroneously conclude there is a beneficial effect when it is not reproducible (type 1 vs. type 2 statistical error). For this reason, NCCIH recommends a staged approach for clinical research to support early stage studies to refine interventions, establish feasibility, demonstrate pharmacokinetics and biological effects of natural products, and select the comparison group that answers the chosen hypothesis.

Overall this session will provide clinical research investigators with a current summary on how to identify the best NCCIH or NIH funding opportunity for the research they want to pursue. Please come to learn and ask questions. We look forward to seeing you!

See information on other NCCIH sessions at ICIMH.


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