The “Back on Track from COVID19” funding opportunity addresses the interruption to biomedical research laboratories and clinical research as a result of the COVID19 emergency. The funds are intended to cover additional costs to research incurred by facility shutdown, changes in work plans due to social distancing, assisting graduate student progress to complete research and overall to partially mitigate the loss of promising discoveries and ideas.


Since its establishment in 1989, the Azrieli Foundation has funded institutions and programs in Canada and Israel in areas including Science, Research, and Healthcare. We support fundamental and translational research in the neurosciences, to support discoveries that could lead to new treatment, intervention, and improved quality of life for families living with neurodevelopmental disorders (NDD).

As described below, the Back on Track grants are directed towards clinical researchers and laboratory-based scientists working in the area of neurodevelopmental disorders. This opportunity is open to any researchers who demonstrate need according to the criteria described below, however priority will be given to Early Career Researchers (ECR).

The Back on Track grant will be used to supplement an already awarded peer-reviewed grant/project.

Applications may be received in English or French.

Key dates

Launch date: June 3, 2020
Application due date: June 17, 2020
Award Notification date: June 29, 2020
Release of Funds: TBD

Funding available:

We will accept requests up to $CDN 10,000

Host Institution Eligibility:

Canadian university, hospital or research institute with CRA Charitable Organization designation

Applicant Eligibility:

  1. Applicant may be a Principal Investigator or Research Associate/Postdoctoral Fellow holding an independent research award, in their own name, that includes operating funds for the project
    • Priority will be given to Early Career Researchers
  2. Past and current recipients of Azrieli Foundation grants including those through partnerships (Brain Canada, CIHR, CIFAR) are eligible to apply
  3. Applicants may be basic or clinical researchers

Project Eligibility and Prioritization:

  1. Basic science projects in the area of neuroscience with priority given to those that focus on neural development and NDD
  2. Clinical studies in the area of NDD
  3. Funds must be used towards projects that are currently funded below CDN$ 100,000/year
  4. Projects in their final year of funding will be prioritized
  5. Pilot studies that show promising preliminary data but were cut short by the COVID19 emergency will be prioritized
  6. This opportunity does not support:
    • A new project
    • Projects funded for COVID19-related research
    • Projects whose funding has been extended by a funding agency
    • Delays and issues that are not due to the COVID19 emergency
    • Institutional overhead

Examples of eligible expenses for Basic Science

  1. Re-establishment of experimental model systems (flies, mice etc.) whose stocks were reduced due to closure (purchase, embryo transfer, cage costs)
  2. Maintenance and/or expansion of cell lines
  3. Key reagent stock production or replacement
  4. Fees related to repeating an experiment that was abandoned (instrument use fees, services)
  5. Equipment recalibration due to disuse
  6. Extension of graduate student stipend to enable study completion

Other expenses may be submitted with a clear rationale and justification of need.

Examples of eligible expenses for Clinical Research

  1. Technology infrastructure to permit remote data collection
  2. Fees or honoraria related to study participant retention
  3. Data sharing & dissemination related costs, if an adaptation was required from the original work plan
  4. Biospecimen collection and storage contingencies
  5. Extension of graduate student stipend to enable study completion

Other expenses may be submitted with a clear rationale and justification of need.

Application Evaluation Criteria

Success in receiving this grant will NOT be based on the merit of the research. The Azrieli Foundation is evaluating these applications based on how our funding can help get the project back on track.


All institutional protocols, licenses and permits related to the research must be valid.

Neurodevelopmental Disorder: A condition affecting the nervous system that manifests in the prenatal and/or early postnatal developmental period(s). This includes developmental brain dysfunction, which is evident as neuropsychiatric problems, learning, language or non-verbal communication impairments and/or impaired motor function.

Early Career Researcher (ECR): an independent researcher, who is within 5 years of their first independent research/academic position, taking into account time used for official leave(s) of absence (medical or parental, for example).

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