Research Grants

Research Grant RFPs

NOTE: The Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) understands that public health concerns are a priority at this time and that research disruptions or delays may result in the coming weeks and months. The MRF and its Scientific Advisory Committee remain committed to our grantees and ensuring their important work continues through any constraints posed by the global COVID-19 response. We appreciate all that is being done to advance melanoma research in this time and are here to answer any questions you may have regarding MRF-funded research.

If you need flexibility in submission of required progress reports (either interim or final) and/or the option of a 1-year no-cost-extension (NCE) please contact MRF Science Officer Robyn Burns at or 202.899.2674. 

Learn about the research we fund!

The MRF has been funding peer-reviewed research since 1998. The foundation provides emerging and established scientific investigators with highly sought-after grants that allow them to explore new, high-impact avenues in melanoma research. The types of grants offered are noted below:

  • Team Science Awards: The largest grant offered by the MRF, a Team Science Award, encourages collaboration across academic disciplines in an institution or among multiple institutions. Team Science Awards are required to address an unmet need or Special Topic area, as defined by the MRF’s Scientific Advisory Committee.
  • Established Investigator Awards (EIA): Applicants must have at least a position of Associate Professor and a demonstrated research track record. This award encourages proven researchers to continue research on emerging challenges in melanoma.  Ideally, this award will generate data that can justify a much larger competitive grant.
  • Career Development Awards (CDA): This award enables young researchers to generate the groundwork that can leverage additional grant funding from other funding bodies. As such, recipients must be either postdoctoral fellows with less than five years of postdoctoral experience or a research associate, instructor, assistant professor, or the equivalent.
  • Medical Student Awards: The MRF is committed to introducing studies early in their career to the clinical or research opportunities under the mentorship of an investigator engaged in melanoma research.

Occasionally, we also have special opportunities available that do not adhere to our usual categories. Specific details and application instructions for each MRF research opportunity will be available in the relevant RFP.

2020 Melanoma Research Foundation Request for Proposals (RFP)

Applications for 2020 MRF Research Awards are currently under review. The Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) is committed to advancing research across the spectrum of melanoma – from prevention through diagnosis, staging, treatment and survivorship. In 2020, the MRF will again offer Established Investigator and Career Development Awards, as well as Medical Student Awards and a Young Investigator Team Award to advance the field of translational immuno-oncology. Additional details, including eligibility information, the review process, award administration, application materials and deadlines can be found in the Request for Proposals (RFP).

2020 MRFBC-BMS Young Investigator Translational Immuno‐Oncology Team Science Award

The 2020 MRFBC-BMS Young Investigator Translational Immuno-Oncology Team Science Award has been awarded! The MRF congratulates Diwakar Davar, MD (Mentor: Hassane Zarour, MD), recipient of the 2020 Melanoma Research Foundation Breakthrough Consortium – Bristol-Myers Squibb (MRFBC-BMS) Young Investigator Research Team Award to Advance the Field of Translational Immuno-Oncology. Dr. Davar is an assistant professor of medicine and medical oncologist/hematologist at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. With Co-PIs Meghan Mooradian, MD, Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School (Mentor: Ryan Sullivan, MD) and Julie Stein, MD, Johns Hopkins University (Mentor: Janis Taube, MD), Dr. Davar’s proposal is titled Integrative Analysis of Prognostic Factors to Neoadjuvant Nivolumab/CMP-001 in Stage III B/C/D Melanoma and seeks to improve the use of neoadjuvant immunotherapy agents to prevent melanoma recurrence in high-risk melanoma patients while avoiding adverse effects of treatment. 

To encourage investigators to not only stay engaged in melanoma research focused on immuno-oncology, but also foster institutional cross-collaborations, the MRFBC offered a 2-year young investigator team award of up to $150,000 per year ($300,000 total). The goals of the MRFBC-BMS Young Investigator Translational Immuno‐Oncology Team Science Award include 1) to help identify and support the next generation of melanoma scientists and 2) to focus on either improving clinical outcomes for patients with melanoma being treated with immuno‐oncology agents or advancing the scientific understanding of immuno‐oncology and the role of the immune system in melanoma. 

2020 Medical Student Research Awards

2020 Medical Student Research Award recipients have been announced! These grants are in the amount of $3,000 for a period of one year. To be eligible, applicants must be a medical student in good academic standing at an accredited medical school or institution in the United States. MD and/or MD/PhD students are eligible to apply.


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Notify Me

Questions regarding the research opportunities below can be directed to the MRF Science Officer at or (800) 673-1290.