GTAC@MGI Collaboration Pilot Grants

May 17, 2019
McDonnell Genome Institute, 4444 Forest Park Ave, St. Louis, MO 63108

The Genome Technology Access Center at the McDonnell Genome Institute (GTAC@MGI) at Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM), the Dean of the School of Medicine, the Department of Arts and Sciences, the Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences (ICTS),  and Illumina Inc. have joined together to offer faculty members from Washington University support for novel pilot research projects in the fields of genetics/genomics for the purpose of generating preliminary data for use in subsequent grant proposals.


The goal of the Pilot Grant is to assist faculty in creating new data to use for securing new outside grant funding. The Pilot Grants will generate data at GTAC@MGI and will promote the use of these technologies for genomic and translational research.

Applicants may request up to $150,000.  One large-scale project of $150K will be funded along with several smaller projects (up to $50,000) as the budget allows. (Applicants can apply for both, but only one project would be funded.  Budget is constrained to services provided by GTAC@MGI.


  1. Applicants must hold a full-time faculty position at Washington University.
  2. Applicants may not hold awards directly related to the proposed pilot research.
  3. Young investigators are strongly encouraged to apply.


  1. Applicants are encouraged to contact by May 10th for guidance on project planning and costs.
  2. Candidates must state explicitly how the pilot data will be used to strengthen applications for external funding.
  3. GTAC@MGI will provide routine data analysis including alignment, quality control and gene annotation at no charge. Additional provisions for data analysis should be detailed in the proposal.  For these pilot projects, GTAC@MGI can provide consultation and guidance on data analysis and these costs should be included in the project budget. In addition, GTAC@MGI can host investigators within MGI space to provide training opportunities for analysis of the project data.
  4. GTAC@MGI should be included in support information as well as the acknowledgements of any resulting manuscripts.
  5. Successful applicants using Illumina technologies will be asked to present results as a guest speaker during a forthcoming Illumina symposium at WUSM.
  6. Candidates must agree to provide annual updates on publications and funding that are obtained as a result of the pilot project.
  7. If selected for a pilot project, samples must arrive at GTAC@MGI by December 1st in order to receive the funding.

Selection Criteria:

Awards will be based on novelty, importance, feasibility, environment, commitment and the overall likelihood that the project will lead to substantial grants incorporating sequencing technologies. The proposed research must be a new projects.  Projects involving current collaborations with MGI or GTAC are not eligible.

Review Process:

A selection committee composed of MGI and WUSM faculty will review the proposals and select the award recipients.  Notifications will be made by June 17th.

Application Format:

The application should adhere to the following format:

  1. Cover page, include project title, the applicant’s full name, title, institution, department or center affiliation and contact information
  2. A one page summary of the research project, with description of how the pilot data will strengthen your external grant applications (11-pt font, single spaced, 0.5 inch margins) (not including Bibliography)
  3. NIH biosketch, with a list of all submitted grant applications (both funded and unfunded) in the past three years
  4. A brief letter from your Chair or Division head verifying support of the application
  5. Budget Summary – including project costs obtained using the GTAC@MGI price list or an estimate provided by GTAC@MGI. (Budget is constrained to GTAC@MGI work only)

Deadline for Submission of Applications:

May 17th at 5pm CST

Application Process:

E-mail the application as a single PDF to with “MGI Pilot Grant Application” in subject line. Questions about this award may be addressed to Candace Farmer (

Print Friendly, PDF & Email