The Grant Editing & Manuscript Support Core (GEMS) provides a number of resources to aid grant and manuscript development and writing.

  • Format Editing - editing to ensure consistent formatting throughout and adherence to standard grant/manuscript writing practices
  • Technical Editing - editing that includes revising and reviewing technical/scientific information to ensure clarity and consistency and use of endnote libraries for bibliography
  • English Language Proofreading – editing to ensure proper use of English language including use of proper grammar and final proofreading
  • Assembly and consolidation of large multidisciplinary program project and center grants including scientific and format editing
  • Strategic advice regarding development of specific aims pages, communication with the NIH and education on standard grant application processes

Standard Grant Proposals

All initial requests for assistance must be submitted to Stacy Heilman at least 15 business days in advance of the deadline and must be accompanied by the following:

  • A completed Grant Service Request Form
  • If a resubmission, the initial submission and the associated reviews
  • If a new submission, the specific aims page

In general, requests will be reviewed and approval granted or denied within 2 business days, and if approved, a face-to-face meeting will be scheduled with the reviewer/editor to discuss the review process.


The initial request for assistance should originate from the lab PI/senior author and should be submitted to Stacy Heilman with the following:

  • A completed Manuscript Service Request Form
  • If a resubmission, a nearly complete (incorporating all changes based on reviewers comments, data analyzed, figures complete, references formatted) draft of the manuscript and the reviewer’s comments
  • If a new submission, a nearly complete (data analyzed, figures complete, references formatted) draft of the manuscript

The GEMS Core provides an initial 1 hour intake session for any requested assistance. During this session, the scope of the request and needed resources are determined. The maximum number of fully subsidized hours per service is as follows:

Editing Assistance for Grant Applications

  • Internal seed funds and pilot projects: 8 hours
  • Career Development Award applications: 12 hours
  • Mid-level project, such as R21s, R01s and Foundation Grants: 16 hours
  • Larger program project grants, multi-site clinical trials and grants with proposed budgets exceeding $250K of direct costs per year: case-by-case basis


  • Manuscripts to serve as foundation of grant application: 8 hours
  • Manuscripts that are not leading towards grant applications: 4 hours/investigator with a maximum of two times per year

Abstracts/Poster Presentations

  • Abstracts/posters to serve as foundation of grant application: 8 hours
  • Abstracts/posters that are not leading towards grant applications: 4 hours/investigator with a maximum of two times per year. It is expected that, in general, abstracts will be tied directly to manuscripts and will not be stand-alone entities.

Any time spent on projects above and beyond the fully subsidized hour cap will be billed at a rate of $45/hour.

A tool from Current Medical Research and Opinion, Volume 26, Issue 8, 2010: 

"Biomedical journals have seen steady increases in submissions recently, partly owing to the introduction of legislation requiring clinical trial results reporting and to industry sponsors’ policies that encourage publication of even early phase studies. Meanwhile, new journals continue to launch every week, providing an ever greater choice of places to publish research. Both factors present challenges when trying to find the right journal for an industry-sponsored study, particularly when authors and publication planners are reticent about communicating with journal editors and some editors may seem wary of direct approaches.

There is already plenty of guidance for authors on writing good manuscripts. In this article, we discuss the Authors’ Submission Toolkit, a new resource for authors that tackles practical questions about manuscript preparation and the submission process that are incompletely addressed in existing guidance documents. The toolkit has been produced through the Medical Publishing Insights and Practices (MPIP) initiative, a project co-sponsored by members of the pharmaceutical industry and the International Society for Medical Publication Professionals (ISMPP) to enable open communication between authors and journal editors and to increase trust, transparency, and integrity in the process of peer reviewing and publishing industry-sponsored research.
We hope that the toolkit will provide useful and relevant information for authors, such as how to initiate appropriate collegial dialogue with journals and to help ensure that good research is being published in the right place. The toolkit summarizes tips and “best practices” to increase awareness of editorial requirements, journal selection, submission processes, publication ethics, peer review, and effective communication with editors, much of which has traditionally been seen as mysterious to authors. We also hope that the toolkit will help to increase confidence in disclosing the role of professional medical writers as legitimate contributors to the process.

Finally, we hope that this initiative will help to increase trust between journal editors and the teams who produce industry-sponsored research: industry investigators, authors, publication planners, and medical writers."

Read More: http://informahealthcare.com/doi/full/10.1185/03007995.2010.499344?prevSearch=allfield%253A%2528toolkit%2529&searchHistoryKey=


The GEMS Core is generously supported by Children's Healthcare of Atlanta and Emory University. When presenting or publishing work completed using the core, please include "Children's Healthcare of Atlanta and Emory University Grant Editing & Manuscript Support Core" in the acknowledgments.

To determine if you should use "Children's Healthcare of Atlanta" in your author affiliations, please see guidelines here.