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FARA Research Priorities & Grant Program

FARA supports research across the spectrum from basic research through drug development and clinical research programs in FA. All investigators interested in FA-related research are invited to submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) through our submission portal. For more information on how to apply for a FARA grant, click here. FARA particularly encourages junior investigators to submit LOIs. FARA also accepts LOIs from biopharmaceutical companies and other industry entities. All proposed research must fall within FARA's Grant Program Priorities, which are as follows:

FARA Grant Program Priorities
Advancing understanding of neuroscience/ systems Understanding the neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative changes of FA and their implications for pathogenesis and therapies.
Advancing understanding of cardiac disease in FA Understanding the pathogenesis of the cardiomyopathy associated with FA, and developing therapies to reduce the morbidity and mortality caused by cardiac disease.
Advancing understanding of the molecular basis of FA Understanding the normal function of frataxin and the precise mechanisms of FXN gene silencing.

Priority will be given to (1) research exploring frataxin function in Fe-S cluster biogenesis that aims to identify frataxin mimetics and/or develop frataxin bypass strategies; and (2) studies addressing the spatio-temporal pattern of FXN gene silencing and reactivation, as it relates to the identification of novel therapeutic targets.
Advancing drug discovery Developing effective therapies for FA.

Priority will be given to genetic, epigenetic, and protein replacement approaches that increase frataxin levels. FARA will also consider high feasibility therapeutic development projects focused on pathways likely to affect disease progression and key symptoms.
Facilitate the drug development process and translational research FARA supports promising therapeutic discoveries by facilitating their rapid translation to the clinic.

High priority will be given to IND-enabling studies, as well as discovery and validation of clinical outcome measures and biomarkers, such as development of methods to measure frataxin in affected tissues and identification of novel pharmacodynamic markers to evaluate the response to therapeutics in affected tissues, in early stage clinical trials. Proposals aimed at developing novel analytical methods to support protein, gene and cell therapy manufacturing processes will also be considered.
Advancing clinical research FARA supports efforts that enable effective clinical research. These include: natural history studies, establishment of biomarkers and clinical outcome measures (including patient reported outcomes), identification of early (including pre-symptomatic) quantifiable disease features, investigator-initiated clinical trials, and evidence-based clinical treatment guidelines.

High priority will be given to clinical research that utilizes or expands resources of the Collaborative Clinical Research Network in FA, in particular identification of novel, clinically meaningful, functional endpoints with measurable changes detectable within one year.


COVID-19 emergency:

If you have been awarded a FARA grant, we will continue to request progress reports as they are due. If your work has been impacted by the COVID-19 emergency – for example if milestones could not be met or no work at all could be performed – we ask you to provide an explanation of how the COVID-19 emergency has impacted your research. We are also requesting that you inform FARA of what actions and measures are needed to assist you in restoring and reestablishing your research. We realize that there may be requests for re-budgeting and no-cost extensions and these decisions will be made on a case by case basis, FARA is implementing a maximum flexibility approach, to meet the needs of our research community and help its recovery.

Please contact us at or, at any time if you have questions or concerns.

Grant types, Deadlines, and Budget Limits
Grant Type Letter of Intent
(LOI) Deadline
Application Deadline Maximum Budget
(in US dollars)
 +  General Research Grant February 1 & July 15 April 1 & September 15 $125,000 per year
for 1 or 2 years
 +  Keith Michael Andrus
Cardiac Award
January 15 March 1 $150,000 per year
for 1 or 2 years
 +  Kyle Bryant Translational
Research Award
May 15 July 15 $250,000 per year
for 1 or 2 years
 +  Bronya J. Keats
International Research
Collaboration Award
May 15 July 15 $200,000 per year
for 1 or 2 years
 +  Postdoctoral
Research Award
February 1 & July 15 April 1 & September 15 $100,000 per year
for 1 or 2 years
 +  Postdoctoral
February 1 & July 15 April 1 & September 15 Trainee salary
up to 2 yrs
 +  Request for Proposals
and Ad-hoc Requests
FARA will issue requests for proposals (RFPs) on an ad-hoc basis.

For junior investigators and postdoctoral trainees who would like support through the application process or general advice on grant writing, they may contact FARA at  for assistance.

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