AACR Maximizing Opportunity for New Advancements in Research in Cancer (MONARCA) Grant for Latin America
Cancer is a major burden to public health in Latin America. Among the many concomitant challenges is a need to generate local evidence and knowledge upon which appropriate clinical, public health, and policy guidelines can be built. Historically, the pool of Latin American cancer researchers in the region has been limited, in part because early-career funding mechanisms to help launch junior investigators into research careers are very limited. A pipeline of talented, creative, and skilled young Latin American investigators needs to be cultivated to generate knowledge that can be used to address cancer control and treatment in Latin America. Furthermore, the development of such academic and research pursuits in Latin America can provide opportunities to advance the region’s need for biomedical, economic, academic, and social development on a variety of levels.
The AACR Maximizing Opportunity for New Advancements in Research in Cancer (MONARCA) Grant for Latin America represents an AACR initiative to address this need by promoting and supporting early-career investigators in Latin America to establish a successful career path in cancer research, thereby increasing and sustaining a cadre of talented cancer researchers in Latin America.
The research proposed for funding may be in any area of cancer research, including descriptive epidemiology, prevention, early detection, diagnosis, treatment, supportive and palliative care, behavioral research, and cancer survivorship. These grants are intended to catalyze subsequent application for funding from other funding sources, not to support longer term research. Each grant will provide $55,000 USD over two years for expenses related to the research project, which may include salary and benefits of the grant recipient and any collaborator, postdoctoral or clinical research fellows, graduate students (including tuition costs), and/or research assistants, research/laboratory supplies, equipment, publication charges for manuscripts that pertain directly to the funded project, and other research expenses. Indirect costs are limited to no more than 10% of the total grant amount. Up to $10,000 USD may be allocated from the grant to support travel applicable to the research project and relevant scientific meetings, including mandatory attendance at the Annual Grantee Recognition Event. The grants are not intended for principal investigators outside of Latin America, although collaborative research projects are encouraged. All funds provided must be spent in Latin America with the exception of limited support for travel to international scientific meetings and conferences.
Research projects may be in any area of cancer research that spans the cancer continuum aimed at forming a basis for reducing the burden of cancer in Latin America. Focus areas for research may include descriptive epidemiology, prevention, early detection, diagnosis, treatment, supportive and palliative care, behavioral research, and cancer survivorship research. Applicants are encouraged to be innovative in their research proposals and demonstrate local relevance of their proposed research.
Relevant topics include (but are not limited to) primary prevention (e.g., vaccination, exposure avoidance, chemoprevention), screening and early detection, and disease monitoring. Use of novel technologies (e.g., mHealth, biomarkers) is strongly encouraged.
Applicant must have an advanced degree (doctoral or medical) in a related field and not currently be a candidate for a further advanced degree.
At the start of the grant term on July 1, 2024, the Principal investigator must:
- Be a beginning investigator, defined as a clinician or scientist who received his or her highest degree of study within the past ten years. An earned academic (or research) doctorate [such as a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)], or medical degree [such as a Doctor of Medicine (MD),Doctor of Osteopathy (DO) or Bachelor of Medicine Bachelor of Surgery (MB ChB, MB BS, BM MCh, etc.)] which is considered the highest degree of study in most Latin American countries. When an investigator has received multiple terminal degrees, the calculation will be based on the date of award of the most recent degree. The funding is also open to those with a Master of Public Health or its equivalent. No exception to this requirement will be considered.
- The PI must have legal citizenship status and be physically present in one of the following countries, and these counties are collectively referred as Latin America throughout this document: Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay, and Venezuela.
- Reside in and be conducting research in Latin America with particular relevance to the Latin American cancer burden. Proof of residency is required.
Applicants must be a citizen of a country in Latin America and have a legal residency status in Latin America. Please read the Program Guidelines and Competitive Letter of Intent Instructions for additional information.
AACR membership in good standing is encouraged at the Letter of Intent stage, but not required. However, any AACR nonmembers selected for a full application will need to submit an application for AACR Membership, and be members in good standing, by the full application deadline. Nonmembers can apply for membership online. Members can renew their membership through myAACR to bring their membership current. You will need your logon (email address) and password to access the member portal. If you require assistance logging in, please submit a help form. Lapsed members must be members in good standing by the application deadline and should contact the Membership Department at [email protected] for assistance.
NOTE: AACR offers seven categories of membership. Annual dues are not required for early-career researchers eligible for Associate membership. Reduced membership rates are offered for members located in countries with emerging economies as designated by the World Bank. Nonmembers requiring assistance in finding nominator for membership application may contact [email protected]. For more information check membership FAQ.
Program Guidelines and Competitive Letter of Intent Instructions are available for download here.
The MONARCA program requires applicants to complete an online Letter of Intent submission by 5:00 PM UTC (1:00 PM Eastern Time) on Tuesday, October 24, 2023, using the ProposalCentral website at https://proposalcentral.com/.
Find your local time for Letter of Intent deadline here.