Funding Opportunities
Funding Opportunities

Since 1981, AFAR has provided over $172 million to over 4,000 talented investigators and students. To learn more about each grant, click below or contact the AFAR grant program staff at

Glenn/AFAR Postdoctoral Fellowship Program for Translational Research on Aging

Please note: The letter of intent deadline has passed for 2017. Please check back in late 2017 for updated application materials.

The program was developed to address the current concerns about an adequate funding base for postdoctoral fellows (MD, MD/PhD and PhD) who specifically direct their research towards translational findings and who will demonstrate how their research will have direct benefits to human aging. Postdoctoral fellows at all levels of training are eligible. Up to ten one-year fellowships will be awarded. The award levels range from $49,000 to $60,000, based on years of relevant experience.



The historical and continuing increase in human longevity brings with it a higher probability of multiple health problems, both chronic and acute.  However, there is growing scientific agreement that understanding how aging affects healthspan, and how that knowledge can be brought into practice, would benefit the overall well-being of an aging population. Significant breakthroughs in understanding and translating the basic biological processes underlying human aging that can lead to clinical interventions offer the most promising avenues to achieving prevention and amelioration of age-related diseases and conditions. 

To pursue this new knowledge, talented investigators must be attracted to aging research. However, given the current funding climate, concerns about an adequate funding base for post-doctoral fellows exist and can be potentially detrimental to both the quantity and quality of research in the area. We need to continue to nurture the research base that will be necessary to enhance the healthspan of millions of older people. Serious gaps in biomedical and clinical research are placing the healthy aging and independence of older people at risk.

The Program

The Glenn Foundation for Medical Research, in partnership with the American Federation for Aging Research (AFAR), created the Glenn/AFAR Postdoctoral Fellowship Program for Translational Research on Aging to encourage and further the careers of postdoctoral fellows, who are uniquely capable of translating advances in basic research from the laboratory to the clinic. The award is intended to provide significant research and training support to permit these postdoctoral fellows to become established in the field of aging.

Translational research on aging is a systematic effort to convert basic research knowledge into practical applications that are directly relevant to human aging and healthspan. This means that findings from the laboratory are brought to clinical practice (and vice versa—clinical observations are made and brought back to the laboratory for further testing.) This type of research aims to bridge the gap between findings in biomedical research to clinically-relevant findings, treatments, diagnostics and prevention. 

Projects concerned with understanding the basic mechanisms of aging that have direct relevance to human aging will be considered if they show the potential to lead to clinically-relevant strategies that address human aging and healthspan. Projects investigating age-related diseases are also supported, if approached from the point of view of how basic aging processes may lead to these outcomes. Projects concerning mechanisms underlying common geriatric functional disorders such as frailty will also be considered. Projects that are strictly clinical in nature such as the diagnosis and treatment of disease, health outcomes, or the social context of aging are not eligible. Priority will be given to studies using one or more of the following models:

  • Human subjects
  • Human cells and tissues
  • Mice or other mammals.

Proposals using other types of models (i.e. yeast, Drosophila melanogaster, C. elegans, etc.) will only be considered when there is compelling justification that these studies may be directly relevant to human health and aging (or "the human condition").

It is anticipated that up to 10 one-year grants of between $49,000 and $60,000 will be awarded in 2017. Of the award, up to $8,000 may be requested for expenses such as research supplies, equipment, health insurance, travel to scientific meetings and additional research and educational training to build expertise in translational research (i.e. combining biomedical research skills with clinical research skills.)

Recipients of this award are expected to attend the AFAR Grantee Conference; funds will be withheld from the grant for this purpose. The goal of the meeting is to promote scientific and personal exchanges among recent AFAR grantees and experts in aging research.

Eligibility Criteria

  • The applicant must be a postdoctoral fellow (MD and/or PhD degree or equivalent) at the start date of the award (October 1, 2017).
  • The proposed research must be conducted at any type of not-for-profit setting in the United States.
  • Individuals who are employees in the NIH Intramural program are not eligible.
  • Applicants who have received postdoctoral training beyond 5 years (before October 1, 2012) must provide a justification for the additional training period.
  • Fellows may not hold any concurrent foundation, not-for-profit or government funding.

Former Glenn/AFAR postdoctoral fellowship awardees may apply if the criteria above are met. Applicants who submitted an LOI to the Diamond/AFAR postdoctoral award may also apply for the Glenn/AFAR postdoctoral fellowship but can only accept one if recommended for both awards.

Application Guidelines

The following criteria are used to determine the merit of an application:

  • Qualifications of the applicant
  • Quality of the proposed research, particularly the potential that basic research findings may lead to translation relevant to human aging and healthspan
  • Proposed career development plan, and training opportunities for the applicant
  • Excellence of the research environment
  • Likelihood that the project will advance the applicant's career in aging research
  • Mentor's strength and qualifications to guide the applicant's research and career planning

If you are using animals in your research, please review Principles of Animal Use for Gerontological Research.

Application Procedures

The deadline for receipt of all Letters of Intent is June 16, 2017 at 5:00 p.m. EST. Please refer to the Glenn/AFAR Letter of Intent . Incomplete applications will not be considered. All Letters of Intent must be emailed to The Letters of Intent will be reviewed by a committee. Applicants will be notified by mid-July 2017, and a subset of applicants will be invited to submit a full application by late August 2017. Final awards are announced by late September, and the award start date is October 1, 2017. AFAR will not provide reviewer critiques to any applicants at any review level.

For Glenn/AFAR Letter of Intent, click here.

Click here for our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Reporting Requirements

Investigators will be required to submit a brief narrative report on the progress of their research and career development activities five months after the start date of the award.  Final narrative and financial reports are required within three months following the end date of the award.

Glenn Foundation for Medical Research

The purpose of the foundation, founded in 1965 by Paul F. Glenn, is to extend the healthy productive years of life through research on the mechanisms of biological aging.