Research Grants for Melanoma

Young Investigator Research Team Award to Advance the Field of Translational Immuno-Oncology

Applications are now being accepted for the 2018 MRFBC-BMS Young Investigator Translational Immuno-Oncology Team Science Award, offered through the MRF Breakthrough Consortium (MRFBC) and generously funded through a grant by Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS). Download the Request for Proposals (RFP) for more information and instructions on how to apply.

The MRFBC-BMS Young Investigator Translational Immuno-Oncology Team Science Award is a research grant to help identify and support the next generation of melanoma scientists and to focus on either improving clinical outcomes for patients with melanoma being treated with immuno-oncology agents or advancing the scientific understanding of immuno-oncology and the role of the immune system in melanoma.

This award seeks to encourage young investigators to not only stay engaged in melanoma research focused on immuno-oncology, but to also foster institutional cross-collaborations. This grant is a 2-year team award of up to $150,000 per year ($300,000 total).

Questions regarding the 2018 MRFBC-BMS Young Investigator Translational Immuno-Oncology Team Science Award, the MRFBC or the MRF Research Grant Program can be directed to the Scientific Officer at or (800) 673-1290.

Medical Student Research Award

The 2019 Medical Student Research Grant application period is now open! Download the Request for Proposals (RFP) for more information and instructions on how to apply. 

The Medical Student Research Award is a research grant supporting medical students early in their careers who are conducting clinical or laboratory-based melanoma research. Eligible areas of research can include the prevention, biology or treatment of melanoma and may focus on the study of cutaneous, ocular, mucosal or pediatric melanoma.

The MRF is committed to introducing students early in their career to the clinical or research opportunities under the mentorship of an investigator engaged in melanoma research. As such, medical students are encouraged to submit applications for the $3,000 award for 1 year of research. Begun in 2011, this program has funded 46 medical students to date.

Questions regarding the 2019 Medical Student Research Award or the MRF Research Grant program can be directed to the Program Director at or (800) 673-1290.

Pilot Proposal Focused on GNAQ/11 Mutant Uveal Melanoma

The GNAQ/11 Mutant Uveal Melanoma grant recipient has been announced! View the official announcement.

The Melanoma Research Foundation's CURE Ocular Melanoma (OM) initiative released an RFP to fund a one-year pilot proposal for $100,000 in the area of GNAQ/11 mutant uveal melanoma. Successful applications will emphasize novel, innovative research into the biology and/or therapeutic targeting of GNAQ/11 mutant uveal melanoma with a focus on GNAQ/11 mutations that involve amino acid change Q209L, as well as other variants of unknown significance (VUS), specifically S326A, among others. The proposal should include, but not be limited to, the structure/ function of the various GNAQ/11 mutations and their impact on disease progression, detection of novel downstream effect or pathways/mechanisms of action, identification of prognostic/predictive biomarkers of metastases, and/or elucidation of novel therapeutic clinical targets. As this is a pilot award, preliminary data is not required.

Additional details, including eligibility information, the review process, award administration, application materials and deadlines can be found in the full Request for Proposals.

Learn more about the MRF's CURE OM initiative and its other research initiatives. All questions regarding this RFP as well as the rest of the MRF's Research Grant program can be directed to the Program Director at or by calling (800) 673-1290.

Established Investigator & Career Development Awards

Research applications are currently under review. 

Applications are submitted and managed entirely online through ProposalCENTRAL and are only available during the application cycle (Jan. 2 - March 1). 

All proposals will undergo a rigorous peer-reviewed process by hand-selected experts in diverse areas of melanoma research. Reviewers include members of the MRF’s Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC) and the Breakthrough Consortium (MRFBC) as well as members of the scientific and clinical melanoma community who are not in conflict with the application.  Proposals receiving discrepant scores will be subjected to an interim review.  Applications with the highest scores (including those that received a high score in the interim review) are then assessed by a panel of representatives from the initial review group. The top ranked grants are recommended for funding to the MRF’s Board of Directors, who will determine the number of grants awarded based on available funds.

Learn about previously funded MRF research by visiting our Research Recipients page!

Grant Program Background

Since 1998, the Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) has been supporting promising medical research that will further the goal of developing an effective treatment and possible cure of malignant melanoma, while also encouraging scientists and clinicians to join in this mission. The MRF is committed to advancing a national scientific agenda for melanoma research, coordinating with other leaders and funders, while funding research across the spectrum of melanoma – in prevention, diagnosis and treatment.

The MRF proactively partners with other leaders and funders (NCI, Congress, Department of Defense, Melanoma Research Alliance) to develop and collaborate on a broad agenda for melanoma research that takes full advantage of all opportunities, while also sharing challenges.

Each year, the MRF provides emerging and established scientific investigators with highly sought-after grants that will allow them to explore new avenues in melanoma biology, prevention and treatments, ultimately leading to a cure. Basic, translational and clinical research projects are considered.

Learn about:

All questions or concerns regarding the MRF’s Research Grant Program can be directed to the Program Director at or by calling 800-673-1290.