2022 AO Spine Discovery and Innovation Award

Call for applications is open

01 December 2021

The AO Spine Research Commission is pleased to announce the 2022 AO Spine Discovery and Innovation Award. The purpose of this research grant is to support scientists and clinicians in the field of spine research and encourage global participation in the AO Spine Knowledge Forums by providing research funding of CHF 45'000 for one year.

The aim is to identify, engage, and integrate AO Spine members who have a desire to perform high-quality clinical and translational research that is pathology driven and a part of the AO Spine Knowledge Forums.

A total of ten grants of CHF 45'000 for one year will be awarded, two in each Knowledge Forum pathology area (Deformity, Degenerative, Tumor, Spinal Cord Injury, Trauma).

This invitation for proposals is open to AO Spine members proposing to conduct clinical or translational investigations pertaining to spine deformity, degeneration, tumor, spinal cord injury, or trauma. If you are not an AO Spine member yet, click here to find out more and join.

We are looking for novel project proposals in the following areas:


  • Adult spinal deformity


  • Cervical degenerative conditions, especially involving ACDF
  • Treatment of lumbar degenerative spondylolisthesis


  • Primary spinal tumors
  • Metastatic spine disease.
  • Proposals in the areas of data science and molecular biology and genomics are encouraged.

Spinal Cord Injury

  • Non-traumatic spinal cord injury
  • Traumatic spinal cord injury


  • Traumatic intervertebral disc lesions
  • Osteoporotic fractures
  • Primary spine infections


Download and complete the Grant Application form.
Download the details of the call and Proposal Guidelines.
The deadline for application submission is February 1, 2022, at 23:59 CET.
Grant winners will be announced in May 2022.
Applications should be emailed to Mrs. Simona Koch, email: simona.koch@aofoundation.org.

Awardees invited to the AO Spine Knowledge Forum

Successful applicants will be invited to become Associate Members of the AO Spine Knowledge Forum which relates to their research proposal for one year, with a possible extension. They must agree to submit an abstract to the Global Spine Congress 2023 and produce a manuscript for journal publication.

AO Spine must be cited as the source of funding in any publication, presentation, or in any publicity resulting from the award or its results.


Read about the studies awarded and the recipients of the 2019 AO Spine Discovery and Innovation Award here.

More details of the 2019 proposals here.

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