Yale Cancer Center carefully invests funds to launch new areas of cancer research. Current funding opportunities are listed below.


Yale Discovery Fund Grant Program Guidelines 


To support exceptionally innovative or unconventional collaborative cancer research at Yale Cancer Center with clear clinical implications. The potential to create new scientific paradigms, establish entirely new and improved clinical approaches, or develop transformative technologies will be a key review criterion.  


In order for Yale Cancer Center to reach its potential as one of the nation’s top cancer centers, it has to conduct research with the potential to revolutionize our ability to study, prevent, treat, or cure cancer. Such research is intrinsically high-risk and is unlikely to fare well in review in the current conservative NIH funding environment. In addition, such research will often require the assembly of collaborative multidisciplinary teams that bring different perspectives to a complex problem. To stimulate collaborative high-impact cancer research, the YCC has established the Yale Discovery Fund grant program. These grants will provide relatively long-term, generous support to allow teams of investigators to embark on ground-breaking, innovative high-risk/high-reward cancer research. These grants will be supported by the venture philanthropy model, in which they will be funded primarily by substantial gifts from a limited number of donors who will be regularly appraised of progress. Our goal is that the research supported by these grants will be transformative: it will create new scientific paradigms, establish entirely new and improved clinical approaches, or develop transformative technologies. In addition, we hope that teams not selected for funding will continue to meet and collaborate and refine their proposals for submission to other internal and external grant competitions.


1. To stimulate collaborative multidisciplinary research, each proposal must include investigators from at least two of these areas: basic science, population science, translational science, clinical science.

2. Each application must have a single lead PI and at least one co-PI from a different discipline as defined in point 1, above. Lead PI must be a YCC member.

3. Grants will provide $450,000 spread over three years. At least $100,000 must be spent in each of the first two years.

4. Up to 5% of the salary of each PI or co-PI can be charged to a grant, up to the NIH salary cap.

5. Spending of more than $25,000 outside of Yale in any one year must be clearly justified in the budget justification. 

6. Successful applications will be selected by a multi-tiered review process conducted by a committee of senior YCC scientists. 

  • The first level review will be based on evaluation of an extended structured abstract submitted as part of a letter of intent (LOI). 
  • Teams with high ranking LOIs will be invited to submit a full application.
  • The final stage will be an oral presentation to the review committee.

7. The research strategy section of the final proposal is limited to six-pages including figures. Literature citations, biosketches, etc., are not included in page limit.

8. Project rationale should be well supported by preliminary data. 

9. Funded projects must have a clear line of sight to the clinic.

10. Funded projects will present progress reports annually to YCC.

11. Release of funds for years two and three of any funded grant will be contingent upon a written progress report and satisfactory progress towards goals.

12. It is expected that one or two grants will be funded in 2019. Additional grants may be funded in the future. 

Review criteria

Significance including potential for paradigm-shifting translational or clinical impact

Cancer relevance


Approach, including feasibility


  • Does team have required expertise and experience?
  • Necessity and effectiveness of multidisciplinary collaboration

Submission process and timing

1. Extended letter of intent due August 15, including:

  • Title of grant and names of PI and co-PIs and a new-format NIH biosketch including other support for each.
  • Two-page structured abstract, consisting of: a) An outline of the background, significance, innovation, and multidisciplinary aspects of the proposed research. b) An outline of the experimental plan.
  • Faculty can be listed as lead PI on only one letter of intent, but can be co-PI on more than one letter of intent. It is anticipated that no one will be PI or co-PI of more than one funded grant.

2. A committee of senior YCC scientists will review and rank the letters of intent, and teams with high ranking proposals will be invited to submit full applications, due October 15. Instructions for the full applications will be distributed to the groups invited to submit proposals.

3. The YCC YDF scientific review committee will rank the applications and select finalists for an oral presentation by the PI(s) to YCC leadership.

4. Final selection of the successful applications will be made in time for January 1, 2020 start.

Important Dates:

August 15, 2019: Letter of Intent Due (apply via Submittable https://yalecancercenter.submittable.com/submit/142733/2019-yale-discovery-fund-letter-of-intent)

October 15, 2019: Full application Due (by Invitation)

January 1, 2020: Award Start Date

Full Applications are by Invite Only

Contact christine.holmberg@yale.edu with questions

*For research focusing on blood cancers*

July 16, 2019 - internal deadline
August 16, 2019 - sponsor deadline

Sponsor's Website and Information
Homepage: http://www.gabriellesangels.org/
Grant Info: http://www.gabriellesangels.org/what-we-do/grant-info/
FAQ:  http://www.gabriellesangels.org/assets/Uploads/FAQs/FAQs-2017.pdf
All Grantees (including abstracts) http://gabriellesangels.org/what-we-do/our-grantees/
Medical Advisory Board: http://gabriellesangels.org/who-we-are/medical-advisory-board/

$75,000 per year for a period of 3 years ($67,500 direct costs per year).  (Total: $225,000)

Nomination Limitation
For this deadline, Yale may nominate one (1) candidate for the Foundation’s conventional or mainstream research program and one (1) candidate for the Foundation’s integrative research program using complementary therapies or botanical agents.  For additional information for Integrative proposals, see: http://www.gabriellesangels.org/assets/brochures/INTEGRATIVE-PROJECT-INFORMATION-Revised-6-17.pdf

The Foundation funds cutting-edge research in the fields of leukemia, lymphoma, and related cancers of the blood. Funds support promising scientists who are applying novel and state-of-the-art techniques to address fundamental problems in their genesis and treatment. Of interest are innovative clinical and basic science research that will lead to novel therapeutic approaches that could replace, or be used in combination with existing effective therapies. Focus is on projects for cancer prevention, detection and treatment that are most likely to be translated into clinical trials within a 3-5 year period.



  • assistant professors with the PhD or MD who are within 5 years of their first appointment as assistant professor.


  • assistant and associate professors

Internal Competition Procedures
Submit the following as a single PDF through this Submittable application portal:
(1) a 2-page description of the proposed project; references may be added on a separate page;  
(2) NIH biosketch in the current format (5-page maximum); and
(3) a letter of recommendation from your department chair or section chief.

For further information, contact: christine.holmberg@yale.edu (203) 785-5205