K08: Clinical Investigator Award

Most recent NIDDK funding announcement: PA-20-203

The K08 at NIDDK

The purpose of the K08 award is to provide individuals who have a clinical doctoral degree with an intensive, supervised, research career development experience.  The research can be basic laboratory science, as well as research on human subjects that does not involve direct interaction with those subjects.  Data-based studies are also appropriate.  The K08 provides support and “protected time” for these individuals considered to be on a path to a productive, independent research career.

The NIDDK does not issue a separate announcement for this program, but accepts applications submitted in response to the NIH K08 parent NOFO.

The NIDDK supports a R03 small grant program to provide additional support for our K08 investigators to pursue a project without a mentor and demonstrate increasing independence.

Award Highlights

  • 3 to 5 years of non-renewable support
  • provides a flexible approach to training for clinicians (M.D., D.V.M., or other clinical doctoral degree) committed to an academic research career
  • all applicants are encouraged to take advantage of the mentors available to them at their institutions and have, in addition to a primary mentor, one or more co-mentors, as appropriate.


Competing and non-competing applications submitted in FY2017

NIDDK will provide

  • up to $100,000 per year for PI salary, with appropriate justification from the institution, in accordance with NOT-OD-16-054
  • authorized fringe benefits
  • up to $25,000 per year for research support, if justified 


The NIDDK wishes to promote the training of clinical investigators who, in addition to being excellent physicians, are excellent researchers.  M.D. applicants who have received training in another country and who are not board-eligible in the United States are not appropriate candidates for NIDDK K08 awards.  The NIDDK K01 Award might be an option in this case.

Principal Investigator

  • M.D., or comparable clinical doctoral degree
  • should have completed clinical training and should be board-eligible by the time of award
  • minimum of 9 calendar months (75% of a full-time appointment) worth of effort to the K-award (urologic surgeons may request a minimum of 6 CM)


We encourage K08 applications in all areas of research supported by the NIDDK.  Before applying

  • read the complete notice of funding opportunity (NOFO) for the K08
  • contact the appropriate NIDDK program director to confirm your eligibility for the award
    • provide your specific aims and your NIH biosketch to expedite this process. 

Applicants should design a 3, 4, or 5-year program that will enable them to become independent clinical scientists by the end of the K08 award period.

Applicants with more research experience

Those holding both M.D. and Ph.D. degrees, typically will have less need for didactic coursework and should propose a 5-year research project, as well as career development plans that will build upon experience and position them for independent funding.


New Applications

  • February 12
  • June 12
  • October 12


  • March 12
  • July 12
  • November 12

Staff Contact

Contact the appropriate program director from the list of Career Development Staff Contacts.

Last Reviewed November 2023