Grant Application Guidance and Expectations

Application Process

  • All grant-making activity is managed via a web-based portal, grant management system, and all communications related to the application process must be received electronically via this system.  Eligibility and registration fields must be completed and receive approval before any applicant submission. 
  • Application Process – Refer to Application Process for details – After Registration, the application process is essentially a two-step process, involving a Letter of Intent (LOI), and if invited, a Formal Proposal.  In general, the entire process may take 90-120 days for the final approval and awarding of a grant. 
  • Grant Review cycles- 3 per calendar year. A list of due dates for applications can be found here: Mathers Grant Review Process and Due Dates. 
  • Desired Start Dates should be for the current cycle only. If approved, the Foundation will ultimately determine the actual start of the project. 
  • One application per cycle per investigator.
  • Universities/Institutions are limited to four applications per cycle. It is our expectation that our trusted partners will conduct an internal search for LOIs that are consistent with our mission and guidelines.


Budgets and duration (REVISED- PLEASE READ CAREFULLY) 

  • The budget justification should provide detailed costs of investigators’ salaries, laboratory supplies, etc., and will be highly scrutinized. 
  • Grant duration must be three years. 
  • Our expectation is that an investigation will be completed within the requested duration of the grant (up to 3 years). A no-cost extension may be requested if the investigation has not been completed and there are still funds available. If at the end of the grant term, the aims of the project have not been met, an explanation should be provided to the Foundation. (The primary investigator is urged to consider a proposed modification of the project’s original aims to prevent such a situation from occurring.) 
  • Preliminary Budgets are required during the LOI phase. A detailed budget justification is not required until the proposal phase.  
  • The Foundation’s grant award is not intended to be utilized for purchasing capital equipment (“bricks-and-mortar”) for the lab and is intended only to support the actual investigation. The Foundation assumes and expects that capital equipment must be provided by the research institution or university. 
  • Indirect Costs for the proposed project cannot exceed 10%. 



  • All submissions (LOIs or formal proposals) must be filed by the due date listed on the Mathers Grant Review Process and Due Dates page. There are no exceptions.  
  • The Foundation primarily supports basic science, ideally with potential translational applications. 
  • Immunology, microbiome, genomics, structural biology, cellular physiology, neuroscience, etc., are some noteworthy examples of current research support.  
  • Covid-19 related research projects (aims or sub-aims) will not be considered for support. 
  • Medical imaging technology related projects and/or electrical engineering technology development projects will not be considered for support. 
  • Plant Biology Research, Oceanography, Space Exploration. and Global Warming related research will not be considered for support. 
  • As technology continues to advance, it is apparent that investigations in the area of basic science and translational research may become more and more reliant on collaborative, interdisciplinary projects. It is important to note that any interdisciplinary project proposals may require additional information regarding collaborator(s)’ achievements and relevant expertise. 
  • Feedback for declined LOI Requests will not be provided; LOIs or Formal Proposals that have been declined should not be resubmitted at a later date for consideration. 
  • Renewal applications for the same or related research will not be accorded priority consideration. It is strongly advised that any re-application for grant renewal consider a new direction based on prior research or emphasize some new potential translational aspects and not merely an extension of previously funded research. 
  • Requests for funding previously federally supported research and/or applications pending federal approval will not be accorded priority consideration. 
  • Requests for support of clinical trials or drug discovery will not be approved. The Foundation will not support projects which we consider pre-clinical drug development. 
  • Grant Agreements must be signed by an authorized signatory for the University/Institution and countersigned by the Primary Investigator.