Notice of upcoming funding opportunity: CIHR Pan-Canadian Network for HIV/AIDS and STBBI Clinical Trials Research

This funding opportunity is now available on ResearchNet.


CIHR is pleased to announce the launch of the CIHR Pan-Canadian Network for HIV/AIDS and STBBI Clinical Trials Research grant. The funding opportunity is led by the HIV/AIDS and STBBI Research Initiative with strategic leadership from the CIHR Institute of Infection and Immunity (III).


The purpose of the CIHR Pan-Canadian Network for HIV/AIDS and STBBI Clinical Trials Research funding opportunity is to support a single nationally coordinated, interdisciplinary research clinical trials network (the Network) for addressing STBBI, including HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B (HBV) and C (HCV), chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis and human papilloma virus (HPV). The Network is expected to establish research infrastructure (including resources and expertise) that facilitates the advancement of innovative, community-centred clinical trials research. This includes research to address STBBI in the context of co-morbidities, co-infections, and disparities in the health and well-being of key populationsFootnote 1 disproportionately affected by STBBI in Canada.

The Network should be positioned to collaborate with other leading clinical trials networks in Canada and abroad to advance equitable, inclusive, innovative, efficient and robust clinical trials. These partnerships should enable leveraging of resources and the mobilization of knowledge that can pivot for combatting emerging infectious disease outbreaks and other related public health crises with a focus on key populations.

Network Structure and Requirements

The CIHR Pan-Canadian Network for HIV/AIDS and STBBI Clinical Trials Research program is anticipated to be launched in two phases as distinct funding opportunities (see schema for funding opportunity). Phase 1 of this funding opportunity, will support the establishment of the Network key components including:

  • Interdisciplinary Clinical Trials Research Teams (with a minimum of 5 teams from different provinces and territories)
  • Community-Centred Knowledge Mobilization Hub
  • Governance

Phase 2 is anticipated to be launched pending internal approvals after the funded Network is awarded. It will provide funding to develop multiple platforms for interdisciplinary training and mentoring that will foster the approaches and skills necessary to address the emerging needs of clinical trials research for STBBI and related conditions.

The composition of each of the key components should demonstrate the Network's capacity to advance equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and uphold Indigenous Rights (see the Equity, diversity and inclusion resources). Additionally, the Network should strive for a balance of research expertise in HIV and other STBBI beyond HIV and ensure inclusion of researchers with strong track records for STBBI research in leadership positions within the teams and in governance.

Research Areas

The Network must support the advancement of HIV/AIDS and STBBI clinical trials research aimed at prevention, treatment, and management of STBBI and related comorbidities to improve equitable outcomes in key populations affected by STBBI. The Network should therefore be positioned to advance clinical trials research in the following priority areas:

  • Integrated approaches for addressing STBBI co-infections and co-morbidities;
  • Next-generation interventions including but not limited to novel vaccines, multipurpose prevention technologies, long-acting injectable antivirals, and antibacterials;
  • Innovative technologies that can strengthen monitoring and diagnosis including but not limited to artificial intelligence, applications, digital platforms, novel clinical trial designs and methodologies;
  • New and improved models of care including culturally safe and holistic models of care, models based in Indigenous ways of knowing, interventions and approaches that promote sexual and reproductive health, and implementation science to enable scale up and adaptation of successful models in other care settings; and
  • Global Health research that improves people's health in Canada and around the world to ensure clinical trials research is conducted in the spirit of decolonization.


The specific objectives of this funding opportunity are to:

  • Strengthen capacity for clinical trials research in STBBI by establishing a network with pan-Canadian governance that advances a diverse and inclusive leadership model and by leveraging partnerships with other Canadian and international clinical trial networks;
  • Advance a community-centered approach to clinical trials research by ensuring meaningful engagement of community members and PWLLE throughout the entire research process, including in research priority-setting, leading to more relevant, applicable and timely solutions for populations at greatest risk of STBBI in Canada and abroad;
  • Mobilize knowledge amongst decision makers, health practitioners, PWLLE, communities, industry, Indigenous communities and Canadian HIV/AIDS and STBBI researchers in Canada and abroad in both official languages to enhance, share and foster equitable benefit of evidence-based interventions; 
  • Develop skills and methodology for the future of clinical trial research by establishing the framework for an interdisciplinary training and mentoring network, baseline activities for training across the Teams and a vision and appropriate capacity to support expanded activities through the anticipated Phase 2 training and mentoring platforms;
  • Improve Health Equity by advancing equitable access to participation in clinical trials with a focus on key populations, and by supporting clinical trials research and interventions that address and reduce the impact of stigma, racism, homophobia, transphobia, sexism and other forms of discrimination and systemically entrenched oppression;
  • Advance commitments towards Truth and Reconciliation by upholding the rights and priorities of Indigenous Peoples, including through Indigenous-led research, respecting self-determination, and supporting distinction-based approaches.

Funds Available

The total amount available for this funding opportunity is anticipated to be $25,000,000, enough to fund one network grant up to a maximum amount of $5,000,000 per year for up to five years.

Anticipated Timelines

These timelines are estimates and subject to change

  • Launch: July 2023
  • Webinar: Mid-August 2023
  • Registration Deadline: September 2023
  • Strengthening Workshop: November 2023
  • Application Deadline: February 2024
  • Notice of Decision: May 2024
  • Funding Start Date: April 1, 2024

The official CIHR funding opportunity will be posted on ResearchNet in the coming weeks. For a full list of CIHR funding opportunities, please visit ResearchNet.

Contact Information

CIHR Contact Centre:
Telephone: 613-954-1968
Toll Free: 1-888-603-4178


Disclaimer: The information contained herein is anticipatory only and does not represent an official funding commitment by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Accordingly, the information, contained herein may differ from the official funding opportunity that will be published on ResearchNet.

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