Application Instructions Matter for #NIH #SBIR proposals

  • November 20, 2019

Did you know that there two sets of instructions for #NIH #SBIR proposals? Yikes!! Do you know where to find them? Do you know which one to use and when?

There are two types of application instructions that must be thoroughly followed when applying for #NIH #SBIR. While there are comprehensive agency-wide instructions, which are a generalized guideline to applying to any National Institute of Health (#NIH) grant proposal, there are also program-specific instructions that must be followed to guard against application disqualification. Specific application protocols exist for categories including Research, Training, Fellowship, Career Development, Multi-Project, and SBIR/STTR.

All NIH application guidance can be found here.

Screenshot of NIH application guidance website

Since we focus on #SBIR/#STTR, let’s explore the regulations of those applications specifically. Registration and application instructions are found in the SF424 (R&R) #SBIR/#STTR Application Guide (Version D) as well as the Annotated SF424 (R&R) #SBIR/#STTR Form Set (FORMS-D). The NIH requires an EIN and a DUNS number as well as SAM, SBA Company, and eRA Commons registrations. 

Using the ASSIST platform or downloadable forms, submit the application. The PI will then check for errors in eRA commons. The finalized application will be sent to, who will send it to NIH. Applicants will be allowed two business days to view the application image before the application automatically moves forward for further processing. 

All of this can be done independently, but most organizations find it much easier to delegate the application process to a consulting agency. Consultants tend to be more familiar with the nuances of submitting a successful application and have a better grasp on the proper deadlines to use to correspond with the lengthy approval processes on SAM, eRA Commons, and

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