Center of Excellence for Systems Modeling of Infection and Immunity across Biological Scales (U54 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

The purpose of this notice of funding opportunity (NOFO) is to support the establishment of one (1) Center of Excellence (CoE) to coordinate the research community of infectious and immune-mediated disease (IID) computational modelers and advance IID modeling research across biological scales. The CoE must include three (3) Coordinating Cores and two (2) Research Projects to advance and integrate bridge models across scales in the context of IID, including HIV/AIDS. The CoE will accelerate multi-scale model development, sharing and re-use, and support collaboration to benefit the entire IID research community.

The role and impact of computational modeling of infectious and immune-mediated diseases (IID) has grown significantly over the last decade. Modeling is used to: (1) elucidate biological mechanisms of infection and/or transmission; (2) understand immune system regulation and responses to various triggers (commensal and pathogenic organisms, vaccines, environment, autoantigens), (3) characterize longitudinal trajectories of allergic or immune-mediated diseases from initiation through progression and/or resolution, including across the lifespan and effects of microbiome, (4) optimize public health control measures in response to epidemic threats, and (5) inform epidemic trajectories and develop therapeutic interventions. Computational modeling supports basic, clinical, and translational research that advances the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) mission, especially as a method to better understand the biological mechanisms of infection and immunity. Even as the use of computational modeling in IID research is growing, computational models are rarely reused or combined to provide multi-scale, transferable, public health solutions because of technical or collaborative challenges. As a global leader in IID research, NIAID is uniquely positioned to provide guidance to the modeling community towards addressing the most pressing strategic IID research priorities.

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