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Explore what
we fund
Explore funding
Talk through your
idea with NIH staff
Find a funding
opportunity of interest
Prepare your
Submit, track, and
view your application
Use eRA commons to
follow application status
Understand the
Review Process
Receive a
Funding Decision
Explore Support
Find a Funding Opportunity of Interest

NIH advertises funding opportunities through the posting of grant solicitations or Notices of Funding Opportunities (NOFOs). Applicants can choose to submit to an omnibus or specific solicitation.  

Omnibus Solicitations  

Researcher-initiated ideas are proposed via the SBIR and STTR omnibus grant solicitations which have three standard application cycles per year. These NOFOs are not for a specific topic, though they link to identified topics of interest for each participating Institute/Center (IC), also known as awarding components. Most small business applications to NIH are submitted to omnibus solicitations.  Below are the standard submission dates and review process timeline to award: 

image ready to apply timeline

Specific Solicitations  

Some SBIR and STTR grant solicitations are focused on specific research areas. Some specific NOFOs, identified as RFAs (Requests for Applications) or PASs (Program Announcements with Set-aside funds), have funding set aside in the Institute/Center’s budget for that specific program. 


  • The Agency Contact section of each funding opportunity includes scientific/research contacts that can help determine if a specific opportunity is an appropriate fit for your application.
  • Institute/Center Program Officials can offer advice on the types of opportunities to consider.



Prepare Your Application


Once you’ve identified an opportunity of interest, you can access the application forms and begin preparing your application using ASSIST -  NIH’s online application preparation and submission system. eRA Commons credentials are required to use ASSIST. 


​​​​​​Prepare your application following the guidance in the How to Apply – Application Guide (including SBIR/STTR Instructions), instructions on the funding opportunity, and any related notices in the NIH Guide for Grants & Contracts.  



  • The Agency Contact section of each funding opportunity includes a support desk, scientific, grants management, and peer review contacts. 


Submit, Track, and View Your Application

To ensure a successful submission, you must  

  • submit your application,  
  • track it to ensure no errors were flagged during processing, and  
  • view the assembled application in eRA Commons.  

If you can’t view it, we can’t review it! 


  • The eRA Service Desk can help you with the logistics of submitting your application and navigating through the systems involved (ASSIST,, and eRA Commons).  


Use eRA Commons to Follow Application Status

eRA Commons is the NIH-managed system that allows applicants, recipients, and HHS staff to securely access and share information. You’ll find your submitted applications, review and Institute/Center assignments, review outcomes, and more.
If awarded, you’ll continue to use eRA Commons for reporting and other grant administration activities.