The Tosteson & Fund for Medical Discovery (FMD) Postdoctoral Fellowship Awards 17-2 call for applications is closed. The previous call is below for your reference only.  This call for applications is scheduled to be updated in the Summer of 2017 and the deadline will be on October 1, 2017. Please check the ECOR website and your emails from MGH Research News for updates. Click here to sign up to receive MGH Research News.

Tosteson & Fund for Medical Discovery (FMD) Postdoctoral Fellowship Awards (17-2)

Application Deadline: Thursday, June 1, 2017 – 5:00 PM



The Executive Committee on Research (ECOR) is now accepting applications for the Tosteson and Fund for Medical Discovery (FMD) Postdoctoral Fellowship Awards for fellows at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).   Please note: while applications for this call are due on June 1, 2017, ECOR has three selections of FMD awards per year with deadlines of February 1, June 1 and October 1. If the first of the month falls on a weekend, we will accept applications through the following Monday. Applicants are only eligible to apply once per year for any of the three calls.  The Tosteson and FMD call for proposals due in June and October do not have any areas of research restriction, whereas the FMD only call for proposals due in February are restricted to Clinical applications only.  Click here for a summary of the FMD fellowship awards and deadlines.

The Tosteson-FMD Awards are intended to support the salary of junior investigators (MD and PhD Research Fellows/Clinical Research Fellows) during a one year period at MGH who are in the training phase of their research.The Tosteson & FMD Awards are for one year and include a stipend of $47,500 [FY 2017 NIH Postdoctoral Salary Levels]. The awardee’s total stipend for the fellowship cannot exceed the total annual salary set by your department or division. Internal MGH department/sundry and other sponsored funds must be used to supplement to the appropriate stipend level under the MGH postdoctoral salary guidelines (for further information on the MGH postdoctoral salary guidelines, go to:

As a reminder, ECOR will accept only one application per applicant for MGH ECOR Fellowship Awards per calendar year (two general calls and one additional call focused on clinical research are posted each year as noted).

The application pool for the Tosteson-FMD is highly competitive, although it varies depending on the number of applications received. In recent cycles approximately 1 in 5 applicants  have been funded. 

To strengthen the competitiveness of your application, please reference the ECOR guidelines for Tosteson-FMD applicants.


  • Awards are not transferable to any other institution
  • The funds may be used only for salary and fringe benefits
  • The awards are unrestricted to the area of study
  • The awards are for $47,500 plus applicable fringe benefits and 15% indirect costs
  • Funds shall be spent during the award's budget period unless the applicant requests and justifies an extension prior to the closing date of the award, and the request is approved by ECOR.
  • Awards will begin September 1, 2017 


  • Applicants and their Fellowship Supervisors/Mentors must both have full-time primary appointments at MGH during the entire award period
  • These Postdoctoral Fellowships are only for MD and PhD Research Fellows and Clinical Research Fellows   
  • Fellows pursuing either fundamental (basic) or clinical research are eligible
  • No more than two fellows from the same laboratory may apply in the same cycle, and no more than one applicant from the same laboratory will be funded in any given cycle
  • The awardees salary must be supplemented by the mentor to the appropriate stipend level under the MGH postdoctoral salary guidelines (for further information on the post doc salary  guidelines, go to
  • Internal MGH department/sundry funds and other sponsored funds may be used to supplement the postdoc fellow's stipend  
  • If the applicant already has or subsequently receives other fellowship awards:
    • The receipt of this support must be allowed by the other sponsor(s).
    • Your total stipend should not exceed an annual salary appropriate for your position and experience (see guidelines above)
    • If the new fellowship award provides salary support but not up to the appropriate level for your position and experience, you may use the ECOR fellowship to supplement to the appropriate level.  The remaining balance of the FMD fellowship must be returned to ECOR
    • If the new fellowship award provides salary support to the appropriate level for your position and experience, you must return the unused portion of the ECOR fellowship award to ECOR
    • Please note that all funds returned to ECOR are pooled for further ECOR awards.  


Applications are reviewed by the ECOR Subcommittee on Review of Research Proposals (SRRP), including a panel of diverse reviewers from across the institution. The SRRP recommendations are reviewed for final approval by ECOR Leadership.  In evaluating applications, SRRP will consider the candidate, the training environment, and the quality and relevance of the proposed study.  Candidates will not be provided with critiques for their application.


Applications must include the following 13 items:

  1. Title of the Research Proposal
  2. Faculty Supervisor Contact Details, i.e. name, email address, telephone number
  3. Post-doctoral Training Information, ie applicant's total number of post-doctoral years (everywhere, including MGH) and applicant's total number of post-doctoral years (or months) with current mentor at MGH. 
  4. Stipends and Awards, ie list of stipends and awards currently held (type and amount of award)
  5. ‚ÄčSummary of Research Project (500 word limit)
  6. Research Plan (5-page limit, excluding references), including:
    • Specific aims
    • Background and significance
    • Preliminary data
    • Experimental design and methods
    • References
    • Note: While the proposal should present a broad view of the significance and general goals of the research, it is important to focus your proposed aims on experiments that can be realistically completed in a one year fellowship. 

  7. Applicant’s Description of Long-term Career Plans (1 page limit).  Include a statement of why/how this award will contribute to the applicant’s achievement of these goals.
  8. Biosketches of both the applicant and the fellowship supervisor.  The biosketches for the applicant and fellowship supervisor must be in the NIH General Biographical Sketch Format found here. You can also find the NIH Biosketch FAQ page here. 
  9. Complete Publications List
  10. Other Support, a list of other current and pending support sources, with amounts for both the applicant and the fellowship supervisor, in the NIH format.  If the applicant does not have other current or pending support sources, please indicate “none” when applicable.  Click here for a sample Other Support list in the NIH format.
  11. Two Letters of Support: one from each category below, (address letters to ECOR Review Committee).

               I. Fellowship Supervisor: This letter should specify the contributions of the applicant to the hypotheses, preliminary data, and research plans described in the proposal and indicate the respective roles of the supervisor and applicant in preparing the application.  Include a statement of why this candidate should receive this award. 

                II. Previous supervisor [or colleague]: This person should be familiar with the applicant’s prior research.  This individual must be from outside the applicant’s current laboratory.


The above letters can be submitted as confidential files, however, submitting the letter confidentially is not required.  For more information on confidential uploads, please see section 3 of the “How to apply” section below as the confidential upload process has changed.


    12.   Training Plan, Environment, Research Facilities 

The training plan should be closely coordinated between the applicant and the mentor, and the mentor must clearly show commitment to the individualized training plan outlined by the applicant.   This may be based on the NRSA application guidelines (SF424) paraphrased below:

  • Training Plan, Environment, Research Facilities (3 page limit)

Please describe the research training plan that you have developed specifically for the Fellowship applicant. Include items such as classes, seminars, and opportunities for interaction with other groups and scientists. Indicate the relationship of the proposed research training to the applicant's career goals. Describe the skills and techniques that the applicant will learn. Relate these to the applicant's career goals.

  • Sponsor's/Co-Sponsor’s Previous Fellows and Trainees (1 page limit)

Give the total number of predoctoral and postdoctoral individuals previously sponsored. Select up to five that are representative and, for those five, provide their present employing organizations and position titles or occupations.


    13. Unit, Service/Department Chief Signed Statement. Click here to obtain the form.



  • Use margins of 1.0 inch or greater and 12pt font size or greater for the Summary of Research Project, Research Plan, Description of Long-term Career Plans and Complete Publications List, and the Training Plan.
  • Upload PDF documents only.  Limit characters to A-Z, a-z and 0-9 when naming PDF documents. Do not use periods, commas, or dashes in the file name.

For a guide to help make your application more competitive, click here.


ECOR accepts all applications online via the ECOR Online Grant Management Portal.  The system has been designed to allow users to:

  • Create a personal profile, which will auto-populate your future ECOR applications
  • Assign a delegate to submit applications on your behalf (optional)
  • View current calls and apply to open opportunities
  • Save and edit current applications in progress
  • Submit completed applications
  • View all your ECOR applications that have been submitted via the online grants system

Instructions for Applying Online

  1. Create your account: Login using your Partners credentials and fill out the profile information.
  1. Complete the application: Once your profile is complete, you will automatically progress through the online application. If you cannot complete the application at one time, “save” the application and return to it at a later time to finish. Before submitting your application, you will have the ability to make changes to the application.
  1. Confidential submission process: The ECOR Online Grant Management Portal has the means of incorporating confidential files.  (optional)

In section eleven of the online application - check the box labeled “Will be uploaded confidentially” only if files are being submitted confidentially by someone other than the applicant.   Do not check this box if the applicant is uploading files themselves to this section. 

  1. When "Will be uploaded confidentially" is checked, a new field will appear for you to provide the Supervisor's name and email address.  Once you "save" or "submit" your application, the supervisor(s) listed will receive an email from "MGH ECOR" with a link that will allow him/her to upload the letter. If you choose to "save" (and not "submit"), you will have a choice of sending the email requesting the letter from your supervisor(s) immediately or waiting until you are ready to submit the full application. However once your application is "submitted", an email will be sent automatically to the Supervisor(s). 

Please allow time for the supervisor(s) to submit the letters of support by the June 1st deadline. 

  1.  Submit your application: Once you have completed the application click on the “submit” button at the bottom of the page. Once you submit it, you will not be able to make further changes unless you send a request to ECOR (note that once the deadline passes, request to make changes will not be accepted).

Useful tips:

  • To avoid losing your work, remember to save frequently
  • You can only upload PDF documents
  • If you previously created a profile, please ensure your information is current

Click "Apply" below to begin the application.


Please visit the ECOR website and review the FAQ page for the Tosteson and Fund for Medical Discovery. 

If you still have questions remaining, please submit your questions via e-mail to ECOR.