Grant Competitions - Opportunity Grant




Opportunity grants allow the LSDF Board of Trustees to consider extraordinary proposals with the potential to advance life sciences research or research infrastructure within Washington's non-profit and public institutions. "Opportunities" are expected to arise infrequently, and only the most compelling proposals will be funded.

Applicants must be Washington state entities that have the resources necessary to accomplish the proposed activities. The principal investigator must be employed by the applicant organization.

Submission of a pre-proposal is required. Only those pre-proposals that are determined to be consistent with the opportunity grant goals will be invited to submit a full proposal. Compelling pre-proposals will include the following:

  • the "opportunity" must be of an urgency or nature that cannot be aligned with LSDF's annual competition cycles;
  • LSDF must be able to significantly leverage its investment against funding from other sources;
  • there must be a high probability that the LSDF investment will attract future financial resources, lead to commercialization of research discoveries, or improve the quality and cost effectiveness of health care; and
  • there is a strong potential for statewide benefit.

An "urgent" opportunity is time-limited and thus likely to disappear if not addressed within a relatively short period of time. Pre-proposals addressing significant health problems in Washington (such as a serious disease affecting many residents) are not necessarily considered "urgent," even though the topic is very important and the proposed activities could potentially have a large near-term health impact.

There is no deadline for submission of pre-proposals or limit to the number of pre-proposals that may be submitted from an organization. Pre-proposals and proposals will be considered on an individual basis as they are received. LSDF will strive to accomplish its reviews consistent with the time sensitivity of the submission, but cannot be responsive to unreasonable timelines.

Opportunity grants may be made upon a contingent basis, e.g., pending the applicant's receipt of matching funds at a future date. Open-ended contingencies are not permitted.


The pre-proposal must be submitted via the LSDF website,, where detailed instructions for submitting pre-proposals are provided. Pre-proposals should not include information that may compromise the applicant's subsequent ability to secure patent or other intellectual property protection.

Examples of the key questions that constituted the pre-proposal in 2010 can be found at for Opportunity Grant Pre-proposals 2-15-11.pdf.

Pre-proposals are received by LSDF with the understanding that the information therein shall be used or disclosed solely for evaluation or as required by law. LSDF holds all submissions confidential in accordance with its confidentiality policy (see and subject to the public disclosure laws of the state of Washington under RCW 42.56 and the amendments to the exemption provisions in RCW 42.56.270(14).

Individuals having difficulties submitting pre-proposals should contact the LSDF grants administrator ( or 206-732-6788) for assistance.

All pre-proposals will be evaluated by LSDF personnel to assess consistency with the opportunity grant goals. Principal investigators may be asked to meet with LSDF personnel to answer questions about the proposed opportunity. Brief written reviews of the pre-proposal may be provided to principal investigators after evaluation. Only those pre-proposals that are deemed to be consistent with the opportunity grant goals will be invited to submit a full proposal. Instructions for submitting full proposals are available at

Applicants, principal investigators, and their representatives may not initiate contact with members of LSDF's Board of Trustees regarding submitted pre-proposals. Any such contact or attempt to contact may result in the disqualification of the pre-proposal.

Key Dates – LSDF Opportunity Grants

Description and Proposal Submission Requirements Release Date: Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Pre-proposals Due: Closed until further notice
Proposals Due: Closed until further notice
Awards Announced: Closed until further notice