Important Information for Proposers

Any proposal submitted in response to this funding opportunity should be submitted in accordance with the NSF Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (PAPPG) that is in effect for the relevant due date to which the proposal is being submitted. The NSF PAPPG is regularly revised and it is the responsibility of the proposer to ensure that the proposal meets the requirements specified in this solicitation and the applicable version of the PAPPG. Submitting a proposal prior to a specified deadline does not negate this requirement.

Supports interdisciplinary research aimed at mechanistic understanding of the structure, function and evolution of cellular and subcellular systems across the tree of life.


Apply to NSF 21-509

The cluster seeks theory-driven investigations of diverse cellular and subcellular systems. Research proposals are encouraged that use multidisciplinary physical, chemical, mathematical and computational approaches to provide novel techniques and integrative insight into fundamental cellular functions. Innovative proposal using plants, microbes, and nontraditional model species are encouraged. Proposals that rely heavily on descriptive approaches are given lower priority.

The cluster encourages proposals in the following areas:

  • Predictive understanding of the behavior of living cells through integration of modeling and experimentation.
  • Evolutionary approaches to understanding the rules governing cellular functions.
  • Integration of function with emerging cellular properties across broad spatiotemporal scales, including ideas that consider cellular organization from the standpoint of soft condensed matter are encouraged.

The cluster recognizes that technological advancement can have profound and catalytic influences on the field of cell biology. These advances are often the result of technology in one scientific field being borrowed and applied to another in new and creative ways. The cluster encourages proposals to develop or adapt innovative tools with potential to enable new avenues of cellular investigation 

The following NSF priorities might also be of interest to the Cellular Dynamics and Function community

  • NSF Big Ideas: Understanding Rules of Life, Navigating the New Arctic and NSF Includes
  • Industries of the Future: Biotechnology/Bioeconomy, Artificial Intelligence and Advanced Manufacturing.

Investigators considering submitting proposals to the cluster, especially in the area of technology innovation, should contact a CDF program officer to discuss its suitability before submission.

Program contacts

Charles Cunningham (703) 292-2283 BIO/MCB
Matthew J. Buechner 703-292-4675 BIO/MCB
Richard J. Cyr (703) 292-8400 BIO/MCB
Loretta Jackson-Hayes (703) 292-4286 BIO/MCB

Awards made through this program

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Map of recent awards made through this program