MOMI Seeds open for applications!

We know that getting started can be one of the most challenging parts of research, that’s why we created MOMI Seeds - an annual grant program that serves as a launch pad for researchers from across the sciences to study human milk from their unique perspectives. The MOMI Seeds program serves to fuel the engine of ongoing discovery in human milk and lactation.

Applications are due October 15, 2022

MOMI Seeds are one-year competitive awards (up to $50,000) to fund early stage projects with relevance to defined Research Priority Areas outlined below. Funding decisions will be announced in early December 2022. Earliest funding start date will be January 1, 2023.

NEW for 2023 MOMI Seeds

Previous MOMI Seeds Awardees are now eligible to apply again!

Research Plan is now limited to two (2) pages!


UC San Diego faculty members who are eligible to serve as Principal Investigators may apply. UC San Diego Postdoctoral Trainees, Medical Fellows, and Residents are also encouraged to apply, but need to be sponsored by a UC San Diego faculty member. The research team may include collaborators from outside UC San Diego.

Research Priority Areas (RPAs)

Specific Research Priority Areas (RPAs) are assigned for each application cycle based on the short- and long-term strategic goals of the center. The 2022/23 cycle invites the submission of applications with relevance to the following RPAs:

  • Infectious Diseases & Immunity: effects of breastfeeding or intake of human milk components on infectious diseases & immunity and vice versa, e.g., infectious diseases affecting human milk composition
  • Metabolism & Metabolic Diseases: effects of breastfeeding or intake of human milk components on metabolism & metabolic diseases and vice versa, e.g., metabolic diseases affecting human milk composition
  • “Milk Moonshot” – Submit an innovative and creative idea for a project related to human milk and breastfeeding that does not fit in any of the other Research Priority Areas

Application Process

Applicants must submit a complete application package that includes the following four documents:

Application Form:  provide general information about the primary investigator and the research team, ethics approval, a lay summary; statement about relevance to selected RPA, and a Research Plan (2-page limit) that describes background and rationale, specific aims, research design and methods, timeline, and future directions and funding opportunities. Instructions and formatting requirements are provided in the application form.


Budget Form: provide requested budget with brief justification


Biosketches:  provide NIH-style biosketches (5-page limit each) for the Primary Investigator and all collaborating investigators, compiled in one pdf file


Application Checklist:  review and check all items on the application checklist to ensure that you are eligible for MOMI Seeds, that you are aware of and agree to the award conditions, and that the application package is complete; submit the completed checklist together with your application


Submit your application

Submit completed forms as four separate attachments via email to

Review Process

Applications will be judged competitively based on the likelihood that the proposed research plan and scope of work will result in robust preliminary data to support strong proposals for extramural funding. Other important considerations include scientific merit, relevance to human milk and lactation research and the annual Research Priority Areas, innovation, overall feasibility of the proposed plan, the track record of success of the research team, and the potential for future extramural funding.

A review committee, composed of faculty members representing a wide range of expertise, will review the applications and provide a ranked list to the Center Director. Feedback for each proposal may be provided in a timely manner after final funding decisions have been made.

Reporting Requirements

Awardees will be required to submit a final report to MOMI CORE within 90 days following the completion of the award period. The final report includes:

  • Summary of project aims
  • Accomplishments towards meeting those aims
  • List of significant results
  • List of presentations and publications that include data generated from the grant
  • Disclosure of any inventions resulting in whole or in part from the grant
  • List of applications submitted to other granting agencies or commercial entities to continue work on this project, including the outcome of those applications
  • Financial summary outlining the use of funds (template will be provided)
  • In addition, the Primary Investigator will be asked to respond to MOMI CORE's periodic requests to aid in documenting the center's effectiveness in funding research in human milk and lactation.

Agreement Terms

When accepting MOMI Seeds grant funding, awardees agree

  • to implement the proposed project immediately (if regulatory approvals, e.g. IRB, IACUC, are required, submission to regulatory bodies must be completed within 30 days of the beginning of the award period);
  • to comply with the agreement terms of the endowment;
  • that the funds will be used solely to conduct the proposed research project and in accordance with the submitted research budget;
  • that funds cannot be applied to indirect or overhead costs;
  • that graduate students can only be supported if they are not paid more than UC San Diego Postdoctoral Fellows and if they have a tuition remission salary;
  • to return any unused funds to MOMI CORE at the end of the award period (carry-forward of unused funds beyond the 1-year grant period is not automatic and must be requested in writing a minimum of 30 days before the end of the award period);
  • to submit a final report to MOMI CORE within 90 days following the completion of the award period;
  • make reasonable attempts to publish the results of this study and to obtain extramural funding to support continuation of this research; and
  • acknowledge support provided by the Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation Mother-Milk-Infant Center of Research Excellence in reports, publications and presentations resulting from this project.
  • Please email us to request a copy of the Funding Acknowledgement Letter and the Informed Participant Letter.

Presentations and Publications

Awardees are expected to publish their findings in scholarly peer-reviewed journals and present their research at professional meetings. All publications, grants, and presentations resulting from research funded by MOMI Seeds must cite MOMI CORE as a contributing source of support. Publications shall include the following wording: "The project was funded [in part] by a Seed grant made available through the UC San Diego Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation Mother-Milk-Infant Center of Research Excellence. The support of the Family Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation is gratefully acknowledged."

Questions About MOMI Seeds?

Please email us or call (858) 246-1874 for any administrative, scientific, or programmatic questions related to MOMI Seeds.


MOMI Seeds are supported by the Larsson-Rosenquist Foundation Research and Collaboration Fund along with other generous anonymous donors.

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