BRAIN issues a new funding opportunity for the development of technologies to understand behavior at the organismal level

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Circular logo with a wiring diagram shaped like a brain surrounded by various animal species used in research

This funding opportunity, with the next due date of February 14, 2023, is part of the Brain-Behavior Quantification and Synchronization (BBQS) program. It will support the development of research projects aimed at advancing approaches for high-resolution synchronized capture of complex behavioral and environmental data and development of computational models of behavior as a complex dynamic system. 

This funding opportunity, with the next due date of February 14, 2023, is part of the Brain-Behavior Quantification and Synchronization (BBQS) program. It will support the development of research projects aimed at advancing approaches for high-resolution synchronized capture of complex behavioral and environmental data and development of computational models of behavior as a complex dynamic system.   

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently issued the funding opportunity announcement (FOA) BRAIN Initiative: Brain-Behavior Quantification and Synchronization (BBQS) – Transformative and Integrative Models of Behavior at the Organismal Level (R34 Clinical Trial Not Allowed) [RFA-DA-23-030]. This BBQS funding opportunity will support planning activities that will lay the groundwork for a scientific project aimed at 1) integrating and advancing approaches for high-resolution capture of multiple dimensions of behavior at the organismal level, as well as dynamic features of the organism’s environment and 2) developing computational approaches that integrate multidimensional behavioral and environmental data across multiple time scales with the aim of modeling behavior as a complex dynamic system.  

Interested in learning more about this FOA or BBQS? Contact the BBQS team at brainbbqs@od.nih.gov and/or plan to attend one of two pre-application webinars on November 22, 2022 at 11am EST or November 28, 2022 at 1 pm EST. More information and webinar registration is available in NIH notice NOT-DA-22-083.  

Research that is appropriate for this funding opportunity includes but is not limited to:  

  • Development or novel application of hardware and/or software tools to be used to simultaneously capture and quantify multiple observable dimensions of behavior including but not limited to ambulation, limb, head, facial and/or eye movements, sniffing, vocalizations, glandular secretion, and peripheral physiology.  

  • Development or novel application of hardware and/or software tools to advance measurement of environmental changes (including stimuli or signals presented to and/or detectable by the organism) for the purpose of synchronous collection and integration of that data with behavioral data.  

  • Development of novel data science and analytic approaches, and computational models with the capacity to integrate multiple data modalities and/or data streams (e.g., integration of behavioral measures from different domains and/or of peripheral biophysiological measures with complex behaviors) over a range of timescales, with the ultimate goal of modeling behavior as a complex dynamic system.  

  • Approaches that integrate multidimensional behavioral and/or environmental data with synchronous measures of neural activity.  

This FOA requires a Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (PEDP) as part of the application. Applicants are strongly encouraged to read the FOA instructions carefully and review the PEDP guidance material. Applicants can submit their applications starting on January 14, 2023. The next application due date is February 14, 2023. For more information, please view the full FOA RFA-DA-23-030. To learn more about planning grants, you can visit the NIH Planning Grant Program information page.  

A complementary BRAIN Initiative BBQS funding opportunity for research in humans was also recently published: Brain Behavior Quantification and Synchronization (R61/R33 Clinical Trial Optional) [RFA-MH-22-240]. For information on this opportunity, visit this BRAIN Blog post and the full FOA here.  

Additional information on the BBQS program, including a previous workshop, can be found here