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Peking University Clinical Research Program——Guidance on Request for Proposals (RFP)

In this era of evidence-based medicine, clinical research has become the essential pathway that Medical Science must take from basic research to clinical usage. Clinical research plays a vital role in identifying clinical problems, summarizing clinical features of a disease, exploring the causes of disease, evaluating the effects of preventive and therapeutic measures, and even the decision-making for appropriate policies on medical insurance and health administrative regulations.

Compared with developed countries, clinical research in China is severely backward. As the leading medical service, research and teaching institution, Peking University Health Science Center (PUHSC) is indispensably obliged to change the situation. In order to promote innovative clinical research with high quality in PUHSC that can effectively improve the medical service of our affiliated hospitals, accelerate academic development, and increase PUHSC’simpacts in various clinical disciplines in China, PUHSC has decided to initiate the Peking University Clinical Research Program, to support, both technically and financially, high-quality clinical research proposals that bears significant innovation and great potential for clinical application.

In the hope of motivating clinical researchers to the highest possible level and collecting the most valuable clinical research proposals, all talents from PUHSC affiliated hospitals are encouraged to respond to this request for proposals (RFP). The details of the RFP are given below:

1. Program Introduction
1.1 What to support
Only support clinical research proposals that use human beings as study subjects, particularly those focusing on prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of diseases. Laboratory focused basic researches and animal experiments are not included in the program.

1.2 Requirements for application
a) The proposals should address the key scientific questions in clinical medicine and the proposed solutions should bear clinical significance and potential for widely clinical application.
b) The proposals should be scientifically sounding, clear innovative, and highly feasible, and should generate scientific results/outputs within 2-3 years.
c) The research team has had some preliminary works or related research experiences.

1.3 Eligibility for application
a) The Principal Investigator(s) in the proposals must be the faculty of Peking University Health Science Center (PUHSC), and should be younger than 60 years of age.
b) Proposals from the Key Disciplines in clinical medicine will be prioritized.
c) Proposals on collaboration from the same discipline or related disciplines of different affiliated hospitals will be encouraged.
d) International collaboration will be encouraged, especially for those led by the Chinese side and with international institutions that signed MOU with PUHSC in clinical research.
e) Proposals with multi-channel financial support will be encouraged.

1.4 Sponsorship details
a) This clinical research grant has no limitation on the numbers of funded project.
b) Funding period will be 2 to 3 years and renewable if necessary.
c) The maximum amount of funding will be RMB 5,000,000 for each proposal; No minimum amount is set, but smaller budget with similar outputs is encouraged.
d) In principal, only one proposal will be funded from the same clinical discipline.

2. Organization, management and technical support to the application
a) The Office of Research Management, PUHSC will be responsible for managing the grant application. All applications should be sent to the office.
b) Individual hospital/institute will be responsible for implementation of the funded project.
c) Peking University Clinical Research Institute will provide technical support on study design and consultation, research quality inspection and monitoring, data management, statistical analysis, etc.

3. Assessment procedures

3.1 Project assessment
This process will be divided into two phases. During phase I, applicants should first submit a research proposal summary both in Chinese and English (no more than 1500 Chinese characters/English words). Those who pass through phase I should submit a complete version of application (both in Chinese and English, the English abstract should be around 3000 words) to go for phase II assessment.
The project assessment will adopt the “Peer Review” system. Each proposal will be assessed by a domestic and an international expert in the relevant field
and graded anonymously.

Phase I
An abstract (Chinese and English) should be submitted to the Office of Research Management by March 1st. It should not exceed 1,500 words. The phase I review will be in 2 steps:
1st step: The Office of Research Management will be responsible for the formality examination and innovation examination.
2nd step: Peer review (In principle, every application will be reviewed by one domestic expert and one international expert, only those get agreement from both of these two experts can be invited to go through the second stage

Phase II
The abstract passed the first phase of review will submit a full research proposal in Chinese and an English summary with 3000 words. The phase II review will be in 4 steps:
1st step: The office of Research Management will make assessment again (Those quite different from the first stage application will be terminated immediately).
2nd step: All proposals will be “Peer Reviewed” anonymously. The review term will consist of the experts including one in clinical practice, one in epidemiology/statistics, and one international expert. Reviewers will score each proposal part by part, and total score will be used to rank the proposals. Proposal will have a chance to be funded if all three experts give a pass.
3rd step: Ethical review will be conducted to each passed proposal after the expert review.
4th step: All passed proposal will be ranked by their total scores, and the funding priorities will be determined by the rank.

3.2 Documents needed for the phase I review:
Affiliated hospitals of Peking University should collect the proposals and review them. After that, please send them all together to the Office of Research Management (E-mail:
Application documents should include:
a) Abstract of the research proposal
b) Principle’s Bio (important clinical research experience, no more than 300 words).

4. Contact Information
Organization: Office of Research Management, Peking University Health Science Center
Contact: Dr. Hongbin Han, 86-10- 82801217,
Ms. Yurong Zheng, 86-10- 82802531,

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