Childhood Eczema Challenge Grant

This grant cycle has closed

Nearly 10 million U.S children under the age of 18 are affected by eczema, with one-third affected by moderate-to-severe disease. Despite recent therapeutic advances, the burdens on these patients, and their families, can be significant and many important research questions remain unanswered.  

To address this need, the National Eczema Association (NEA) and the Pediatric Dermatology Research Alliance (PeDRA) are collaborating to support targeted clinical research investigations focused on pediatric eczema with the 2021 Childhood Eczema Challenge Grant. Through this grant NEA and PeDRA intend to accelerate research that improves the health and quality of life of pediatric eczema patients and their families.  


This Challenge Grant is intended to stimulate early and mid-career scientists as they seek to build and sustain careers as research investigators and future thought leaders within this critical field of study.  Research proposals should address at least one of the following priorities related to pediatric eczema:

  • Eczema Heterogeneity:  Novel Insights
    Projects aimed at advancing understanding of the underlying factors contributing to the diversity of pediatric eczema clinical presentation, treatment response and comorbidities.
  • Innovations in Clinical Practice & Care
    Studies addressing approaches to facilitate optimal identification and treatment of pediatric eczema and associated comorbidities in all health care settings to enhance patient/caregiver-reported and patient/caregiver-centric outcomes.  
  • Understanding & Alleviating Disease Burden
    Insightful proposals that identify, quantify, or aim to reduce aspects of pediatric eczema burden that negatively affect patient or family/caregiver quality of life (including lifestyle, academic, occupational, or economic impacts) based on patient population, treatment approach, etc.
  • Eczema Prevention
    Novel investigations into the potential risk factors and strategies of primary eczema prevention in the pediatric population.

Priority will be given to proposals that focus on clinical or translational research and are broadly applicable.  Proposals that include basic research will be accepted, however they should be combined with a significant clinical or translational component.   Proposals related to the development or enhancement of mobile apps will not be accepted.  

Number of Awards

One (1) Challenge Grant is available for the 2021 funding cycle.  This is a one-year non-renewable grant, with an expected start date of August 1, 2021.


Early and mid-career investigators (Associate Professor level or below and within 15 years of finishing training) are eligible to apply.  

Applicants need not be trained in pediatric dermatology but must hold the degree of MD and/or PhD and be eligible to apply for grants under the guidelines of their host institution.  Applications may be submitted by either a single investigator or multiple investigators at multiple institutions.  

Applicants need not be United States citizens and the research need not be conducted in the United States.  

Applicants may not hold current R-level funding from NIH (or equivalent) as PI or Co-PI, however recipients of past or current NEA and/or PeDRA grants are eligible to apply. 


Applicants may request up to $50,000 (direct costs only). Indirect costs are not allowed.  

Salary and fringe benefit support is allowed. Staff salary support should be commensurate with the percent effort dedicated to the project and explained in budget justification.  PI salary support must adhere to the current allowable NIH salary cap:  

How to apply

Applications to 2021 Childhood Eczema Challenge Grant must be submitted through the online portal, and will include the following:

  • Investigator(s), Institution, and Project Information (fillable form)
  • Abstract (250 word maximum)
  • Layman’s Summary (150 word maximum)
  • Cover Letter (2page maximum
  • Research Proposal (7-page maximum, including references)
  • Budget (2-page maximum) – NIH format with brief justification
  • Biosketches (5-page maximum per biosketch) – NIH format for PI and any Co-I’s. 
  • Letter(s) of Support – Letters of support are encouraged from mentors and collaborators.  Fellows, postdocs, and other trainees must provide at least one letter from their mentor or supervisor.

Important Dates

Application deadline: 5:00PM PDT, Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Awards Made: By June 30, 2021

Earliest Start Date: August 1, 2021


Email  or for additional information or with any questions on the Challenge Grant, application, or review process.

In 2020, NEA partnered with the Pediatric Dermatology Research Alliance (PeDRA) to create the first-of-its-kind Childhood Eczema Challenge Grant to accelerate research that improves the health and quality of life of pediatric patients and their families. The grant of $50,000 is awarded to an early or mid-career scientist or team of scientists whose research project will best further this goal. 

The Childhood Eczema Challenge Grant will focus on at least one of four research areas: novel insights into disease heterogeneity, innovation in clinical practice and care, understanding and alleviating disease burden and eczema prevention. 

The inaugural Childhood Eczema Challenge Grant was awarded to Junko Takeshita, MD, PhD, MSCE of the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine for her investigation into racial and ethnic disparities for care of childhood eczema.

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