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Pilot Research Project Core

Martin Adler, Core Director (

The Pilot Research Project Core provides support for new initiatives and feasibility studies to test novel hypotheses in the area of substance abuse research. Pilot awards address important questions related to drugs of abuse, addiction biology, pain and analgesia, and the interactions of HIV and substance abuse. The amount of support of each pilot award is sufficient to allow for testing new ideas and generation of data that can be used to form the basis for an application for external funding. Applications are solicited once a year and are advertised widely to Temple faculty, as well as to researchers at outside institutions. There is a committee that rigorously evaluates the proposed projects. Special consideration is given to early career investigators, as well as to investigators new to the field of substance abuse research. Pilot project investigators are encouraged to make use of the expertise and the facilities of the Research Support Cores of the NIDA P30 Center. Use of the Research Support Cores allows the incorporation of techniques outside of their own areas of expertise and is a means to receive additional mentoring from Core faculty. This type of interaction also promotes multidisciplinary research at the highest level. It is anticipated that three pilot projects will be supported directly by the Pilot Research Project Core each year, including at least two new projects per year.

The specific aims of the Pilot Research Project Core are as follows:

  • Aid investigators, especially new investigators, to test ideas leading to external support
  • Provide mentoring of early career investigators to achieve the aims of the project
  • Foster collaborative studies between investigators of P30 Center and other units at Temple and nationally
  • Support investigators in both basic and clinical sciences, attempting to bridge fields that could aid in understanding and treating substance abuse and addiction
  • Work closely with the Research Support Cores of the NIDA P30 Center at Temple to solicit ideas for enhancing and expanding research currently supported by NIH grant funds
  • Bring investigators from other disciplines and other institutions to the P30 Center to collaborate on projects involving drug abuse, HIV and addiction