Investigators in the Pathogenesis of Infectious Disease

Please note:  Important program update for 2015.

This award provides $500,000 over a period of five years to support accomplished investigators at the assistant professor level to study pathogenesis, with a focus on the interplay between human and microbial biology, shedding light on how human and microbial systems are affected by their encounters. The awards are intended to give recipients the freedom and flexibility to pursue new avenues of inquiry and higher-risk research projects that hold potential for significantly advancing the biochemical, pharmacological, immunological, and molecular biological understanding of how microbes and the human body interact.

The Investigators in the Pathogenesis of Infectious Disease program provides opportunities for assistant professors to bring multidisciplinary approaches to the study of human infectious diseases.

The goal of the program is to provide opportunities for accomplished investigators still early in their careers to study what happens at the points where human and microbial systems connect. The program supports research that sheds light on the fundamentals that affect the outcomes of this encounter: how colonization, infection, commensalism and other relationships play out at levels ranging from molecular interactions to systemic ones.

Researchers who start from the human host are encouraged to apply, as are those whose focus has been more often trained on microbes and macrobes that are sometimes pathogens.  Throughout this announcement, when we talk about "microbes," we also include the sometimes large, sometimes multicellular pathogens including protists and worms.


Applicants are always encouraged to contact the program officer directly about their planned proposal, their competitiveness for the award, or other questions.  The program officer, Victoria McGovern, Ph.D., can be reached at or 919-991-5112.

As a supplement to direct conversations with the program officer, BWF staff will hold three conference calls between August and October, 2014 for applicants relatively new to preparing faculty-level grants and for interested administrators.  These calls will both disseminate general information and reinforce the message that calling program staff individually with questions is a good thing to do.

The conference call time and dates are:

  • Dates:  TBD
  • Time: 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time
  • Dial in number for all calls:
  • Passcode for all calls: