Video Source: NIH

Scientific Review Officers and other NIH officials answer the questions they get most often, including:

  • What do you mean by “scientific premise or rigor”? (1:07)
  • What is the difference between “significance” and “overall impact”? (2:18)
  • When will I receive word on my application? (5:20)
  • How does NIH guard against a single reviewer having undue influence? (6:25)
  • I don’t like the review group you put my application into. What can I do? (7:49)
  • I addressed concerns from my prior critiques and my score got worse. Why? (9:48)

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gs2620 says:

The webpage mentioned by Dr. Custer ( does not exist!
The only webpage addressing this issue that I was able to find is:

gs2620 says:

Dr. Reed states that “being competitors is NOT a compelling reason” to exclude a reviewer.
On the contrary, in the NIH instructions of the PHS Assignment Request Form, one can read:
Exclude reviewers. NIH policy allows you to list people who should not review your application, though your scientific review officer makes the call.

Limit your response to 1,000 characters.
Valid reasons include the following:

Competitor (if you believe the competitor would not give you a fair review).
Long-standing scientific disagreement.
Conflict of interest.

FLJ says:

The link no longer works

Thanks for the heads up. This post has been updated with a new link. Looks like NIH updated their video.

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