Selected – 2012

Call for proposals for Franco-Californian collaboration on stem cells’ basic research

The ANR is joining the CIRM RFA (Request for Applications, termed Call for Proposals in France) 11-03, BASIC BIOLOGY AWARDS IV (BBA IV) to fund collaborative research projects between Californian researchers and French researchers.

The objective of this call for proposals is to fund Californian-French driven basic research projects that tackle outstanding issues in relation to understanding the biology of human stem cells.

Californian-French research proposals must focus on elucidating basic molecular and cellular mechanisms and should utilize pluripotent stem cells, adult stem cells, and/or their differentiated derivatives. They must cover at least one of the following areas:

  • Cellular and molecular basis of disease or injury: use of in vitro, human stem cell-based models to elucidate and/or validate pathological or regenerative mechanisms related to injury or disease; investigators studying childhood-related neurological disorders are particularly encouraged to apply
  • Studies to understand and address immunogenicity of human stem cell derivatives in transplantation; mechanisms by which immune suppression and tolerance approaches affect human stem cells and their derivatives
  • Systems biology approaches using stem cell, genomics and phenotype data to elucidate the basis of complex disease and/or inform potential strategies for regeneration
  • Characterization of molecular determinants of human stem cell fate decisions during differentiation
  • Molecular basis of self-renewal and expansion in human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC) or human adult stem cells
  • Molecular basis of pluripotency, multipotency and senescence of human stem cells
  • Understanding human stem cell mechanisms using tissue engineering approaches, including use of natural and/or artificial scaffolds that recruit endogenous stem cell populations or are seeded with stem cells, appropriate support cells, growth factors and/or matrix molecules
  • Mechanisms of cellular reprogramming
  • Molecular basis for induction of multipotency or pluripotency
  • Molecular induction of de-differentiation or trans-differentiation of cells for tissue regeneration
  • Genomic and epigenetic instability (single cell and related populations) of hPSCs and progenitor cells, and the effects of such instability on differentiation, tumorigenicity or function

As described in the RFA 11-03, CIRM funding under this initiative will be prioritized towards studies utilizing human cells, although CIRM will exceptionally fund research necessitating the use of animal model systems if the proposed studies are groundbreaking and highly innovative. The ANR, however, does not have any restrictions regarding the “material” used to address the scientific questions (i.e. human stem cell lines or animal models & cells). What is important for the evaluation of the French-Californian joint proposals is that they must show an added value to the collaborative work, with complementary approaches that should lead to a higher impact for the project.

Opening : 2011-11-10 at 17h12 CET
Application Deadline : 2012-01-10 at 17h00 CET

Grant applications must be submitted jointly by a coordinator from each country/state: a Californian coordinator, termed PI, and a French coordinator, termed Partner PI. The PI and Partner PI each coordinate the work in their country and are respectively the main contact persons for CIRM and ANR.

Other researchers (called partners in France) may participate in a proposal. These partners are called "key personnel" in the text of the call for proposals (RFA-11-03), and in the Full-Application form. The CIRM procedure specifies that the "key personnel" do not appear in pre-application form. The ANR, however, would like to know the names of these partners. Therefore, the French coordinator will have to complete a French annex (« Fiche annexe française ») with a description of the requested budget for each French partner (maximum of 6 French partners). Please visit for further information.


Submission of an application for this RFA involves a two-step process, as described in section VIII of RFA 11-03:

  • Pre-applications should be submitted electronically at, using the online submission form, which will be available starting from 28 November 2011. The deadline for submission of pre-applications (electronic submission only) is 10 January 2012 at 5:00 P.M. (17 h 00) Californian time.
  • In addition, the French coordinator will have to complete a French annex (« fiche annexe française », see below) and sent it to Natalia.martin(at) before 10 January 2012 at 5:00 P.M. (17 h 00) Paris time.
  • Full applications will only be accepted from applicants who are invited by CIRM. Full-applications should be submitted electronically on the following website: The deadline for submission of full-applications (electronic submission only) is: 25 April 2012 at 5:00 P.M. (17 h 00) Californian time.

Additional information can be found at the CIRM website ( The “Annexe pour les participants Français », in French, and the « Fiche annexe française » can be found at the ANR website (see below)

Please note that the Californian part of the grant will be funded by the CIRM and the French part of the grant will be funded by the ANR. If selected for funding, each French partner (partner PI and key personnel) involved in a given project will have to sign a grant with the ANR. French applicants are therefore subject to the ANR eligibility criteria and the funding of French applicants will be regulated according to the ANR rules. Please read carefully the “Annexe pour les participants Français” (see below).


Dr. Natalia Martin
+ (33) (0) 1 73 54 81 33