Dr. Ralph and Marian Falk Medical Research Trust – Catalyst Awards Program


The Dr. Ralph and Marian Falk Medical Research Trust was created by Marian Falk in 1979 to support biomedical research. Mrs. Falk sought to fund “medical research to improve treatments of the past and eventually find cures for diseases for which no definite cure is known.” Bank of America, N.A., serves as Trustee for the Falk Medical Research Trust. Health Resources in Action is pleased to manage the grantmaking for both the Falk Catalyst and Transformational Programs on behalf of Bank of America.

Program Focus: The Catalyst Research Award Program provides up to $350,000 in seed funding over one to two years, to support high-risk, high-reward translational research that address critical scientific and therapeutic roadblocks and can be transferred to clinical practice in the near term. If successful, these projects will have high impact outcomes that open new avenues for treating, curing, an improving the lives of individuals suffering from disease.

Projects must be responsive to the following areas of research focus:

1. Identification of biological markers of disease activity and progression,
2. Identification of targets for therapeutic interventions, and
3. Development of therapeutic agents that will disrupt, arrest, or prevent the disease process.

The award supports planning and development of projects, teams, tools, techniques, and management necessary to lay the foundation and apply for a subsequent two to three year $1,000,000 Transformational Award. Please Click Here for more information on the Transformational Award Program.

Eligible Institutions: Select institutions are invited to nominate and submit up to two applications per grant cycle. Eligible institutions are focused on research institutions located in the Midwestern United States with a few exceptions for historical reasons.

2024 Invited Institutions:

  • Brown University, RI
  • Case Western Reserve University, OH
  • Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, OH
  • Cleveland Clinic, OH
  • Indiana University, IN
  • Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Illinois Chapter (Nominated projects may be based at any Midwestern nonprofit research institution) IL, IN, IA, KS, MI, MN, MO, NE, ND, OH, SD, WI
  • Lurie Children’s Hospital (formerly Children’s Memorial Hospital), IL
  • Loyola University, IL
  • Mayo Clinic, MN
  • Medical College of Wisconsin, WI
  • Michigan State University, MI
  • Northwestern University, IL
  • Purdue University, IN
  • Rush University, IL
  • Shirley Ryan AbilityLab (formerly Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago), IL
  • Stanford University, CA
  • The Ohio State University, OH
  • Thomas Jefferson University, PA
  • University of Chicago, IL
  • University of Cincinnati, OH
  • University of Illinois – Chicago, IL
  • University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign, IL
  • University of Iowa, IA
  • University of Kansas Medical Center, KS
  • University of Michigan, MI
  • University of Minnesota, MN
  • University of Missouri, MO
  • University of Nebraska Medical Center, NE
  • University of Wisconsin, WI
  • Washington University in St. Louis (WUSTL), MO
  • Wayne State University, MI
  • Yale University, CT

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