Research Grants

On an annual basis the National Pancreas Foundation provides multiple research grants in the amount of $50,000. NPF has given over $5 million to fund over 130 ground-breaking research projects.

The proposed research must have direct relevance to the diagnosis and/or treatment of pancreatitis, pancreatic cancer or pediatric pancreatitis. Grants are awarded for a period of one year. Researchers are employed by a medical institution engaged in health-related research. The researcher is a physician or holds an advanced degree (MD, DO, PhD or international equivalent) working in any country within 10 years of obtaining his/her medical degree.

Grant research will directly address questions in basic, experimental or translational pancreas disease research, including, but not limited to acute, chronic, & pediatric pancreatitis, pancreatic cysts, pancreatic insufficiency, pediatric pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer, including early detection and treatment of these disorders. The research, in most cases, should be for a pilot project, where the results can lead to valuable preliminary data that could lead to a larger grant that could be transformative.

International applicants are encouraged to apply but need to be affiliated with an institution engaged in healthcare-related research.


There is a standing NPF Committee Grant Review Committee composed of pancreas disease clinicians that reviews all research grant applications.


  • October – February: Promotion of NPF Research Grants to Medical Community
  • Grants Due to National Pancreas Foundation: February 15, 2024
  • Committee Review & Final Grants Approved: April 1st
  • Donor Notified

Grant Eligibility Criteria

Applicant Criteria:

  1. Applicants must be employed by an institution engaged in health-related research.
  2. Applicants must hold an advanced degree (MD, DO, PhD, or international equivalent).
  3. Applicants must be early-stage faculty within 5 years of their first faculty or staff appointment. Postdoctoral fellows may apply if they will hold a faculty position at the time the grant starts. The position must be confirmed at the time of the application.
  4. An exception to the 5-year window may be granted for interruptions of work experience due to extenuating circumstances and clinical training. Applicants whose time on faculty exceeds the 5-year window and who believe they may be eligible should contact the NPF to confirm eligibility before submitting the application.
  5. Applicants are required to include a mentor or senior scientist collaborator on the project. The mentor/collaborator’s Biosketch and Other Support should be provided. For international applicants, the mentor needs to be a member of a US professional society or association (APA, AGA, AAS/SUS, etc). Each applicant should provide an attestation from the mentor that they will be responsible for the conduct of the research.

Research/Grant Criteria:

  1. The research must be in the broad field of pancreatic diseases, including pancreas physiology and function, in children or adults. Studies intended to advance knowledge in the areas of pancreatic malignancy, and all forms of pancreatitis, would be the closest to the areas of interest of the NPF. Applications from other fields are welcome, but the proposal will require clear intersection with diseases of the exocrine pancreas.
  2. Grant research proposals should directly address questions in basic, experimental, translational or clinical pancreas disease research, including, but not limited to acute, chronic pancreatitis, pediatric pancreatitis, pancreatic cysts, pancreatic insufficiency, and pancreatic cancer, including early detection and treatment of these disorders.
  3. If the applicant changes institutions while applying for, or utilizing funds from the NPF, the applicant or grantee must notify the NPF, and will be subject to review based upon the change in circumstances.
  4. The funding should be for a pilot project, where the results lead to valuable preliminary data that could lead to a larger grant that could be transformative. It should be clearly specified how the funds/research will be used to leverage additional funding.
  5. The scope of work must be commensurate with the funding amount (PI’s should not be sending in RO1-type applications).
  6. Overlap with existing sources of funding should be clearly identified in the Other Support document.


Grants will be made for one year only (project will start September 1, 2024). The maximum award will be $50,000. Funding is to cover direct costs only, and costs should be reflected in the budget.


2024 Research Grant Submissions Are Due by February 15, 2024.

2024 Grant Application (Word Document)
2024 Grant Application (PDF)


The notification of the decision of the Board of Directors regarding funding will be emailed to the applicant and the Institutional Representative late April or early May.


Please contact Carrie Anderson, National Program Manager


Please submit the application via electronic file in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

Research Grant Awardees

Exploring Therapeutic Options in CFTR-related Pancreatitis Using Advanced In-vitro Intestinal-organoid Models
Liron Birimberg-Schwartz, LBS, MD, Hadassah Medical Center

Investigating the Role of Hexosamine Biosynthetic Pathway in Driving Inflammation and Fibrosis in Mouse Models of Pancreatitis
Vineet Gupta, PhD, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine

Cytotoxic Effector Memory CAR-T Cells and Anti-PD1 Checkpoint Inhibitor Combination Immunotherapy for PDAC
Vanaya Konduri, PhD, Baylor College of Medicine

Leveraging Evolutionary Lineage Tracing to Dissect Heterogeneity in Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma Initiation and Therapeutic
John Morris, PhD, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Mechanosensing in Pancreatic Regeneration and Developmen
Sandip Swain, PhD, Duke University

Targeting Asparagine Metabolism in Pancreatic Cancer
Christopher Halbrook, Ph.D., The Regents of the University of California, Irvine

Incorporating Endoscopic Ultrasound and Elastography towards improving outcomes of Pediatric Pancreatitis Management
David Vitale, MD, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

Reparative Responses of Ductal Progenitor Cells in a Genetic and Inducible Injury Model for Severe Acute and Chronic Pancreatitis
Janine Quijano, Ph.D., City of Hope

Soy-Tomato Enriched Diet Modulates Inflammation in Chronic Pancreatitis
Thomas Mace, PhD, The Ohio State University

Peep Profiling of Local and Systemic Immune Responses During Progression of Pancreatitis
Murli Manohar, PhD, Stanford University

Identifying Adaptations to Metabolic Stress in The Pancreatic Cancer Microenvironment
Alexander Muir, PhD, University of Chicago

Metabolic profiling to identify key regulatory events that drive pancreatic tumorigenesis and metastatic dissemination
Christine Chio, PhD, The Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York

Initial Pain Management in Pediatric Pancreatitis: Opioid vs Non-Opioid
Amit Grover, MD, Boston Children’s Hospital

Treating The Gaps in Acute Pancreatitis
Jiwon Hong, PhD, University of Auckland (New Zealand)

Identifying Novel Druggable Regulators of NRF2 in Pancreatic Cancer
Chang Jiang, PhD, Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute

Local Immune Responses Associated With Human Chronic Pancreatitis
Bomi Lee, PhD, Stanford University

Therapeutic Targeting Of The Most Aggressive Molecular Subtype of Pancreatic Cancer
Cindy V. Leiton, PhD, The Research Foundation for The SUNY Stony Brook University

Contributions of the Adipose Tissue to the Development of Pancreatic Cancer
Zobeida Cruz-Monserrate, PhD, The Ohio State University

Targeting Stellate Cells for the Treatment of Chronic Pancreatitis
Vikas Dudeja, MD, University of Miami

Aberrant RNA Processing Induced by Mutant p53 in Pancreatic Cancer: Mechanistic and Therapeutic Implications
Luisa F. Escobar-Hoyos, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Enhancing Precision Therapy for Patients with Acute Recurrent or Chronic Pancreatitis with CFTR Dysfunction by the Use of a Novel Sweat Test
Tanja Gonska, MD, The Hospital for Sick Children (Toronto)

Inhibitor Resistant Trypsin in Pancreatitis
Zsanett Jancso, PhD, Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine

Can High RAS Activity Transform Pancreatic Ductal Cells?
Jennifer Bailey, MA, PhD, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

Alterations in the Enteroendocrine Axis Following Total Pancreatectomy with Islet Autotransplant (TPIAT) for Chronic Pancreatitis
Melena D. Bellin, MD, Regents of the University of Minnesota

The Role of Pancreatic Cancer Metabolic Rewriting in Driving the Expression of CES2 a Predictor of Response to Folfirinox Therapy
Michela Capello, PhD, University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center

Reinterpreting Hypertriglyceridemia in the Context of Pancreatitis: Implications for Its Measurement, Classification, Mechanisms in Disease, Therapy, and Nutrition
Biswajit Khatua, PhD, Mayo Clinic Arizona

Confocal Laser Endomicroscopy as an IMaging Biomarker (CLIMB study) for the Diagnosis of Pancreatic Cystic Lesions
Somashekar Krishna, MD, MPH, The Ohio State University

Follistatin Nanoparticle Therapy for Pancreatic Cancer Cachexi
Daniel L. Marks, MD, PhD, Oregon Health and Science University

Targeting Fibrosis in Chronic Pancreatitis: A Potential Treatment Option
Nadella, MD; Victor Ciofoaia, MD, Georgetown University

Magnetic Resonance Cholangiopancreatography (MRCP) A Reliable, Non-Invasive Method for Staging Chronic Pancreatitis from Minimal Change Disease to the Advanced Stages in Pediatrics
Abu-El-Haija, Maisam, MD; Trout, Andrew, MD, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center 

A Novel Biomarker, mAB Das-1, for Diagnosis and Risk Stratification of Precancerous Pancreatic Lesions*
Das, Kiron, MD, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey
*Supported by the Allen Lebovitz and Esther Horvitz Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund 

Genomic Structural Variants at the CTRB1/CTRB2 Locus in Chronic Pancreatitis
Hegyi, Eszter, MD, PhD,
Boston University, Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine 

Preoperative Extended Chemotherapy vs. Chemotherapy Plus Hypofractionated Radiation Therapy for Borderline Resectable Adenocarcinoma of the Head of the Pancreas*
Katz, Matthew, MD FACS, University of Texas/MD Anderson Cancer Center
*Supported by the Western PA National Pancreas Foundation Chapter

Non-Tumorigenic Support Cells Fuel Pancreatic Cancer Metabolism
Lyssiotis, Costas, PhD, Regents of the University of Michigan 

Engineered T Cells for Pancreatic Cancer*
Watanabe, Norihiro, PhD, Baylor College of Medicine
*Supported by the Ben & Rose Cole Pria Foundation

Effect of Liver Histopathology on Islet Engraftment Post Autologous Transplant after Total Pancreatectomy for Chronic Pancreatitis
Chirag Desai, MD, Georgetown University

Modulating TH17cells in Pancreatic Tumorigenesis by Targeting RORγt
Florencia McAllister, MD, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

Identifying Somatic Mutations in Chronic Pancreatitis
Andrew Rhim, MD, University of Michigan

Genetic Determinants of Pediatric Chronic Pancreatitis
Aliye Uc, MD, The University of Iowa

Investigating the Role of Progenitor-Like Cells in Pancreatitis in Mouse and Human Pancreas
Farzad Esni, PhD, University of Pittsburgh

Immune Based Therapies in Chronic Pancreatitis
Aida Habtezion, MD, MSc, Stanford University

Jak2 Inhibition as a Therapeutic Approach for Chronic Pancreatitis
Gregory Lesinski, PhD, MPH, The Ohio State University

Temporal Analysis of Tumor Suppressor Function in Pancreatic Cancer Development
Scott Lowe, PhD, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center

Blocking Scaffold-Kinase Interactions to Inhibit Pancreatic Cancer
Julien Sage, PhD, Stanford University

Characterization and Modulation of TGFbeta Activation in Pancreatic Fibrogenesis
Barbara Ulmasov, PhD, Saint Louis University

Rectal Indomethacin to Prevent Post-ERCP Pancreatitis
John Levenick, MD, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

Role of Tunneling Nanotubes in Promoting Chemotherapy Resistance of Pancreatic cancer
Emil Lou, MD, PhD, University of Minnesota

Role of the Polycomb Group Gene1 BMI1 in Pancreatic cancer
Marina Pasca Di Magliano, PhD, University of Michigan

The Histone Deactylase SIRT6 Modulates Pancreatic Cancer Metabolism
Raul Mostoslavsky, MD, PhD, Massachusetts General Hospital

Genetics of Constant Pain in Chronic pancreatitis
David Whitcomb, MD, PhD, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

The Role of Bacteria in Modulating Pancreatic Tumorigenesis
Constantinos Zambirinis, MD, Mres, New York University

Endocrine function in chronic pancreatitis: The role of insulin secretion, insulin sensitivity, and the incretin axis
Melena Bellin, MD, University of Minnesota 

Dissecting the Pdx1 Master Switch in Pancreatitis Recovery
Howard Crawford, PhD, Mayo Clinic-Jacksonville 

Reconstituting pancreatic cancer development to discover early diagnostic biomarkers
Seung Kim, MD, PhD, Stanford University 

A Zebrafish Approach to Characterizing Human GWAS Genes for Pancreatic Cancer
Sahar Nissim, MD, PhD, Brigham and Women’s Hospital 

Natural Killer Cell Impact on Pancreatic Cancer Progression
Kerry Campbell, PhD, Fox Chase Cancer Center

The Role of Toll-Like Receptors in Modulating Pancreatic Tumorigenesis
George Miller, MD, New York University School of Medicine

Control of Pancreatic Acinar Cell Nuclearity, Ploidy and Proliferation
Charles Murtaugh, PhD, University of Utah Psychometric Testing of the Pancreatitis Quality of Life Instrument (PANQOLI) on Patients from the National Pancreas Foundation using Survey Monkey

Wahid Wassef, MD, University of Massachusetts Medical School 

Screening test for the early detection of pancreatic cancer
Kenneth Yu, MD, MS, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center 

The role of Annexin A2 in metastasis and as a novel therapeutic target for pancreatic cancer
Lei Zheng, MD, PhD, Johns Hopkins University

Regulation of Pancreatic Fibrotic Responses by Pigment Epithelium-Derived Factor (PEDF)
Chuhan Chung, MD, Yale University School of Medicine 

The Role of Stat3 signaling in the initiation of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma
Akihisa Fukuda, MD, PhD, University of California San Francisco

The Role of Dendritic Cells in Pancreatic Fibrosis and the Development of Pancreatic Neoplasia
Ashim Malhotra, MD, New York University School of Medicine 

Translational Studies of Circulating Pancreatic Epithelial Cells in Cancer Progression
Andrew Rhim, MD, University of Pennsylvania 

Role of Src in Antegrade Golgi Expansion and Autophagic Acinar Cell Death
Vijay Singh, MD, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center