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Scientific Research Grants & How to Apply

Scientific Research Grants and Fellowship Programs

Autism Speaks supports global biomedical research into the diagnosis, causes, prevention, and treatment of autism or its disabling symptoms. Our mission is to improve the future for all who struggle with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In support of that mission we provide funding along the entire research continuum - from discovery to development to dissemination - for innovative projects that hold considerable promise for significantly improving the lives of those affected by autism.

Autism Speaks plans to hold a variety of topic-specific grant calls over time. We are pleased to be able to support many different types of projects, each critical for advancing all phases of autism research. In addition to our research grants, we also offer the Weatherstone Predoctoral Fellowship and the Meixner Postdoctoral Fellowship in Translational Research. Fellowships provide the necessary resources to support and encourage the development of young scientists who benefit from the mentorship of prominent researchers. We believe the investment in autism research training will grow exponentially as many of our fellows later assume teaching roles and join departments around the country and the world, many of which currently have no representation in autism research.

Please refer to the specific Request for Applications (RFA) for the details of eligibility, the application process and access to the Autism Speaks Science Grants System.

Open Requests for Applications (RFAs)

Suzanne and Bob Wright Trailblazer Award - No deadline; Letters of Intent accepted anytime. $100,000 max, up to 12 months. [Updated 10-10-2014 for 2015]

12 month awards for highly novel "out of the box" transformative projectsSee RFA for further information. 


Closed Requests for Applications (RFAs)

Meixner Postdoctoral Fellowships in Translational Research for 2015 - Closed as of February 18, 2015. Announced July 13, 2015(2016 RFA is planned to open in August 2015)

Three-year fellowships designed to support promising, well-qualified postdoctoral scientists pursuing training in translational research in ASD. Applicants MUST have at least two mentors – one in basic research and one in clinical research. 

Dennis Weatherstone Predoctoral Fellowships for 2015 Announced April 27, 2015. (2016 RFA is planned to open in August 2015)

Two-year fellowships for predoctoral students interested in pursuing careers in autism research. More information about the recently awarded Weatherstone fellowships can be found here. Find more information on the Weatherstone program here.


Other Application/Grant Information

Announcements of new RFAs will appear on this page and in the e-Speaks newsletter. Researchers can sign up to receive email notification of new RFAs by clicking here:

Autism Speaks Review Process

Autism Speaks' Science Program Policies - Updated 4-8-2014

Apply Online:

All proposals must be submitted online via Autism Speaks Science Grants System. Through its various user-friendly features, applicants and institutional officials can monitor the status of their applications and grants. System access instructions can be found in the RFAs.

Electronic submissions are mandatory. No paper or e-mailed applications will be accepted. For inquiries, please contact:

Joan L. New, Grants Manager (for Scientific Research Grants)
Autism Speaks
1060 State Road, 2nd Floor
Princeton, NJ 08540

Phone: (609) 228-7313 |

For information on Family Services Community Grants, click HERE.