Research & Policy

Arthritis Foundation/AOFAS Research Grants


AOFAS and the Arthritis Foundation are pleased to announce the recipients of the AF/AOFAS Ankle Arthritis Think Tank Research Grants. Nearly $600,000 in merit-based grants were awarded to support innovative clinical research that advances knowledge toward treatments to stop or slow ankle osteoarthritis.

Congratulations to the 2023 AF/AOFAS Ankle Arthritis Think Tank Grant Recipients!

  • Determining the Traumatic Origins of Ankle OA and the Time to Joint Degeneration
    Donald D. Anderson, PhD, University of Iowa and Cesar de Cesar Netto, MD, PhD, Duke University

  • The Impact of Bone Quality and Histopathology in Ankle Osteoarthritis
    Constantine A. Demetracopoulos, MD, and Jensen K. Henry, MD, Hospital for Special Surgery

  • Defining the Unique Synovial Transcriptome and Proteome of Ankle Post-traumatic Osteoarthritis
    Kenneth J. Hunt, MD, and Michael Zuscik, PhD, University of Colorado-Denver

Program Information

Grant Description

This grant invites proposals for clinical research projects with a budget of up to $200,000 spread over two years. Proposed budget must limit indirect (F&A) expenses to 8%.

Research proposals should focus on innovative clinical research that advances knowledge toward treatments to stop or slow ankle osteoarthritis (including hindfoot). A goal of this grant is to support research that will build data needed to secure funding from large institutional sources (such as the NIH, DoD, PCORI, VA and others). Clinical studies must utilize patient reported outcomes, with use of complementary imaging and/or clinical samples being highly encouraged. Studies should comply with clinical and institutional review board (IRB) requirements. Animal studies are not allowed.

Proposed research may include, but is not limited to:

  • Optimization of biomechanics for prevention or treatment of ankle osteoarthritis

  • Slow/stop adjacent joint arthritis in ankle or hindfoot, including subtalar joint

  • Development of tests or assays using clinical specimens to detect the early stages of ankle osteoarthritis

  • Development of therapeutics, including “orthobiologics,” that could modify the course of ankle osteoarthritis

  • Genetic susceptibility to ankle osteoarthritis

  • Database studies

Grant recipients will be expected to:

  • Present progress updates at AOFAS and AF meetings as well as prepare annual reports to be submitted to the AF proposal management platform

  • Submit manuscript detailing results of the project for consideration to be published Foot & Ankle International (FAI) or Foot & Ankle Orthopaedics (FAO)

  • Utilize data and results of the project to submit for large institutional funding (NIH, DoD, PCORI, VA, and others)

  • For clinical trials, follow additional regulations including the registration of clinical trials within 21 days of protocol approval on


Access to this research grant is a benefit of AOFAS membership. The principal investigator on the application must be an AOFAS member in good standing in the United States. Co-principal investigators are allowed. Principal investigators based in non-US entities and non-US components of US organizations are not eligible to apply.

Eligible organizations include:

  • Higher education institutions, including public/state-controlled and private institutions

  • Nonprofits with 501(c)(3) IRS status (other than institutions of higher education)

  • Non-domestic (non-US) entities (foreign institutions) and non-domestic (non-US) components of US organizations are not eligible to apply