Rapid Response: Canada 2018

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Neurodegenerative diseases of aging are among the least understood and most undertreated diseases today. If ignored, the social and economic costs of managing these diseases will continue to rise. Meeting these challenges requires pioneering approaches to accelerating treatments.

The Rapid Response: Canada program provides seed funding for high-risk, high-reward, translational research projects on neurodegenerative diseases of aging.

NEW for 2018: The Institute has updated which tools are in scope. Please read our What We Fund page before applying to determine if your project is in scope.

Program Overview

Please refer to the Program Details and Request for Applications (RFA) document for more information.

Goal: To provide funding for novel, high-risk, high-reward, translational research that will accelerate the development of therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases of aging.

Funding: A maximum of $200,000 over up to 18 months per project

Applicant Eligibility: Eligible Principal Applicants must be researchers working in Canada at least 30% of the time at or above the level of Postdoctoral Fellow, and be affiliated with a Canada Revenue Agency-qualified donee institution located in Canada.

If the Principal Applicant is not appointed at the institution from which they are applying, they need to apply with a research supervisor (an “Administrative Supervisor”) who is at or above the level of Assistant Professor or equivalent, with an appointment at the institution from which they are applying.

Applicants may appear in any role on any number of projects.

Project Eligibility: 

Projects must meet two conditions to be eligible:

  1. Be translational research that helps accelerate the development of therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases of aging
  2. Be the development of a therapeutic and/or tool

Please refer to What We Fund for Institute definitions of neurodegenerative diseases of aging, translational research, therapeutic, and tool.

The Rapid Response program will have multiple calls per year, alternating between two different disease groups (outlined below). Applicants should apply to the group best suited to their project.

Alzheimer’s & Related Diseases:

Parkinson’s & Related Diseases:

o  Alzheimer’s disease o  Parkinson’s disease
o  Frontotemporal dementia o  Progressive supranuclear palsy
o  Mild cognitive impairment o  Dementia with Lewy bodies
o  Vascular contributions to the above o  Multiple system atrophy
o  Prodromes to the above o  Vascular contributions to the above
o  Prodromes to the above


The Institute encourages applicants to contact us (neuro@weston.ca or +1 (416) 935-4056) with any questions regarding this program, including whether a potential idea is in scope.

Application Process

There are two stages to the application process:

  1. Letters of Intent (LOI)
  2. Full Proposal

An application requires the submission of a Letter of Intent which will be reviewed by our scientific review committee. Applicants with high potential projects will then be invited to submit a Proposal. Instructions for submitting the Proposal will be forwarded to those invited.

Request for Applications (RFA)

Program Details

Letter of Intent sample


Important Dates*

Parkinson’s & Related Diseases:

Program opens: Program closed
Letter of Intent deadline: December 4, 2017 at 2:00pm EST
Proposal deadline (by invite only): April 4, 2018 at 2:00pm EDT
Anticipated award notification: June 2018

Alzheimer’s & Related Diseases:

Program opens: February 2018
Letter of Intent deadline: April 2018
Proposal deadline (by invite only): August 2018
Anticipated award notification: November 2018
*Dates subject to change

Program Information Webinar

The Institute will hold a Program Information Webinar to provide further details on the program and answer any questions.

Parkinson’s & Related Diseases: October 10, 2017 at 1:00pm EDT

     Registration for this webinar has passed

Alzheimer’s & Related Diseases: March 2018**

     Registration link will be provided closer to the date

**Date subject to change


The Institute welcomes inquiries about this program or any of our other funding opportunities. Contact us at neuro@weston.ca or +1 (416) 935-4056.


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