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September 2, 2021 – Morris Animal Foundation, at any given point in time, is funding more than 150 active studies that advance the health of animals around the world. But how do those studies get selected? By our Scientific Advisory Boards.

Each year, the Foundation has four primary Requests for Proposals (RFPs) in our targeted species areas including cats, dogs, horses and wildlife species, as well as smaller RFPs for llamas and alpacas, and for designated research topics through our Donor-inspired Studies program.

Each RFP has a designated Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) comprised of a panel of scientists and veterinarians who are expert in their respective areas. First, each proposal must be approved by  the Foundation’s Grants Administration team to ensure the application meets all criteria and is complete. Then, the SABs put each proposal through a rigorous review process to select the best, most impactful studies worthy of receiving funding from the Foundation.

Receiving a Foundation grant is highly competitive and depends not only on quality and impact, but on the amount of available funding and the number of proposals submitted for a given health issue or species group. Using a panel of outside experts helps ensure that proposals are impactful and important to advancing animal health, but also are reviewed in a fair and unbiased manner.

Any study that involves animals, whether owned by clients or cared for by a study team, is evaluated thoroughly by the Foundation’s Animal Welfare Advisory Board to ensure the study meets the Foundation’s strict standards for health and well-being. The majority of our studies that include animals are pets in clinical trials in which new treatments, new diagnostic tools or surgical advances are being evaluated. Pets are enrolled in clinical trials by their owners with counsel and advice from their veterinarian and the clinical trials research team.

Our Animal Welfare Advisory Board ensures that every animal participating in a Foundation-funded study is treated with respect and receives compassionate care, comfort and protection from pain and distress. All studies must adhere to our Health Study Policy for Animals Involved in Research, which informs our study-selection process.

Morris Animal Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Boards are a model that’s been duplicated by other institutions and remains the gold standard in the scientific community. For animal health researchers, obtaining a Morris Animal Foundation grant is considered a major career achievement. In addition, researchers who serve on our Scientific Advisory Boards consider their service an honor and an impactful way to help animals around the world.

How You Can Help

The need for animal health funding is growing. With more dollars, we can invest in more projects and help more animals. Join us in advancing the health of the many species that share our planet. Your gift will help fund important health studies that will help animals everywhere live their best lives.