Milken Institute and ATF Announce New Request for Proposals to Expand Understanding of Sarcoidosis

The Milken Institute Center for Strategic Philanthropy, in partnership with the Ann Theodore Foundation (ATF), is pleased to announce a new Request for Proposals (RFP) aimed at understanding the underlying biology of sarcoidosis, an immune system disorder. The Ann Theodore Foundation Breakthrough Sarcoidosis Initiative is one of the largest investments in the basic science of sarcoidosis and has the potential to accelerate the speed at which new discoveries and therapies are made.

The second cycle of the Breakthrough Sarcoidosis Initiative funding cycle is open for applications now through Tuesday, January 10, 2023. Teams can apply for funding up to $575,000 over two years. An information session on the program and initiative will take place on Wednesday, September 28 at 3:00 PM EDT.

Sarcoidosis is characterized by clusters of immune cells, known as granulomas, that form in various organs throughout the body. It is commonly seen in the lungs, but virtually any organ can be affected. In addition, it can be a chronic and devastating condition. Symptoms may include difficulty breathing, fatigue and arrhythmia, and can lead to serious organ damage and death. While anyone can be affected, it affects African American women to a greater extent than other demographics.

It’s inspiring to see the ways strategic philanthropists are emerging and providing the capital needed to advance our understanding of a disease like sarcoidosis.”


Melissa Stevens, executive vice president of philanthropy, Milken Institute

This funding program builds on an important Giving Smarter Guide that outlines the critical need to better understand this devastating disease and several promising opportunities for philanthropy to intervene.. More than $3 million in sarcoidosis-focused research funding has recently been awarded to six US-based teams.

SAB member Bob Baughman, president emeritus of the World Association of Sarcoidosis and other Granulomatous Disorders, added: “We believe this infusion of funds will pave the way for solutions for those affected by this debilitating disease.”

The winners of this funding cycle are expected to be notified in the spring of 2023.

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