ARPA-H Announces Osteoarthritis BAA RFP

May 23, 2023

Deadline June 23

ARPA-H has officially launched its first program-specific broad agency announcement (BAA): Novel Innovations for Tissue Regeneration in Osteoarthritis (NITRO). NITRO aims to revolutionize care for the 32.5 million Americans suffering from osteoarthritis (OA) through groundbreaking approaches to tissue regeneration. NITRO anticipates that teaming will be necessary to achieve the goals of the program. Prospective performers are encouraged (but not required) to form teams with varied technical expertise to submit a proposal to the NITRO BAA.

Multiple awards and award types are anticipated under the NITRO BAA. For full program details, please see the linked BAA and additional information below. Those interested in NITRO should read the full BAA and contact ARPA-H at about joining the program.

NITRO BAA and Proposal Details

Proposers’ Day Event: June 15, 2023, 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM EDT
Registration due date: June 8, 2023, 12:00 PM EDT

Abstract Submission
Abstract Due Date: June 23, 2023, 5:00 PM EDT

Proposal Submission
Proposal Due Date (for accepted abstracts): July 28, 2023, 5:00 PM EDT

NITRO Program Details

The NITRO Program calls for proposals to advance regenerative and reconstructive strategies for treating OA, using pioneering approaches to enable revolutionary advances in patient care. Specifically, NITRO aims to address current issues surrounding OA treatment by developing new ways of helping the human body repair its own joints. In particular, the program focuses on three technical areas: 1) injectable bone regeneratives; 2) injectable cartilage regeneratives; and 3) replacement joints built from human cells.

In the first two instances, the NITRO team plans to leverage recent innovations in a wide variety of disciplines – including regenerative medicine, biomedical engineering, and biomaterials – to create therapeutics that can fully regenerate damaged joints. If successful, these therapeutics will stimulate naturally occurring biological repair mechanisms within the joint itself – and in doing so help the body to heal damaged cartilage and bone without surgical intervention.

If the joint has deteriorated beyond the point of repair, NITRO’s third research area involves developing replacement joints made from a patients’ own cells. These joints won’t require any permanent fixation (plates and screws) and will signal the formation of new bone and cartilage. If successful, they will also be load-bearing and non-immunogenic – meaning that they won’t be rejected by the immune system – ultimately preventing patients from needing repeat surgery.

In order to meet these goals, ARPA-H invites those interested in NITRO to read the full BAA and contact them at about joining the program. Successful applicants will work with a diverse team of performers to address the biggest challenges facing osteoarthritis patients today.