DChallenge 2022

Inviting Type 1 Diabetes researchers to compete to catalyze innovation and accelerate research towards a practical cure for Type 1 Diabetes.
Submission Deadline


We are asking cross-functional teams to generate novel hypotheses using rich, curated data sets.

The D-Challenge is a focused scientific movement that begins with the end in mind. We are leveraging our connections with Type 1 Diabetes researchers and inviting ALL of them to compete to catalyze innovation and accelerate research towards a practical cure for Type 1 Diabetes.  In doing so, we aim to add a solid appreciation of the biology that drives this relentless disease to the current literature and knowledge base.

Type 1 Diabetes is a multifactorial disease that is studied by many scientific disciplines. the(sugars)cience, is partnering with dkNET (the NIDDK Information Network) to bring the full power of on-line digital resources to the challenge of Type 1 Diabetes.

In addition to claiming a share of $50,000 in cash prizes, winners will have an opportunity to present their hypothesis and interact with an audience including:

  • Academic and institutional luminaries in the fields of Bioinformatics and Type 1 Diabetes research
  • Industry leaders in biotechnology
  • Professionals and advisors involved in venture funding

**New for 2022, we are adding a separate NOVICE Track focused on introducing your team to online in-silico resources to further your exploration of T1D hypotheses.

dkNET is an information and search portal that helps researchers find research resources relevant to their research and keep up to date on new tools, services, and mandates to support robust and reproducible science.  Through our resource catalog, Discovery Portal, and our newly redesigned Hypothesis Center, newsletter and webinar series, we connect researchers to resources in digestive, diabetes, and kidney diseases.

Register here by 11:59 pm PDT Sept 1 2022


Team Up

The D-Challenge is open to participants of all skill levels, from students to skilled bioinformaticians and data scientists. Create a team of investigators from multiple disciplines who want to apply their skills and passion to the problem of T1D.


Dream Up

Use the extensive resources and tools hosted through dkNET to discover novel pathways implicated in disease pathophysiology and / or identify new therapeutic targets.



The winning team will win cash awards to further their research.



The D–Challenge is a community research challenge designed to increase awareness and use of the rich ecosystem of on-line tools and data findable through dkNET to develop a compelling hypothesis about the biology, treatment, or sequelae of Type 1 Diabetes.  It is open to participants of all skill levels, from students to skilled bioinformaticians and data scientists.

The goal in this challenge is to bring investigators across disciplines to apply their skills and passion to the problem of T1D:  its biology, treatment and sequelae, through the use of a rich interconnected ecosystem of data tools and resources.  The extensive resources and tools hosted through dkNET provide the opportunity to catalyze searches for novel pathways implicated in disease pathophysiology and / or identify new therapeutic targets.  As a partner in the D–Challenge, dkNET provides access to these resources and tools in an easily available setting, fostering discovery by the broad community of investigators focused on T1D.

Entries will be judged on the creative use of public tools, data, and knowledge resources to develop a compelling hypothesis regarding the biology, treatment, or sequelae of T1D.  Participants are expected to use multiple on-line tools and platforms and to develop a plan as to how the hypothesis could be tested.  The challenge focuses on in-silico development and testing and will not involve a wet lab component.  Participants will be organized into different tracts, depending on the amount of bioinformatics experience they have, to ensure that the competition is open to all who are interested in learning about the rich ecosystem of online tools.

Please note this challenge is restricted to only teams in the USA or Canada.


General information

  • Open submissions until September 1 2022  at 11: 59 pm Pacific Time
  • Submissions are as a single PDF document to Easy Chair
  • September 8 2022  “D-Challenge Check in” will detail submission process/video tutorial available
  • September 8-October 8 2022: Data Bootcamps: at least one member of each team must attend
  • November 18 2022: Submit Abstract
  • November 30 2022: Submit Hypothesis
  • Finalists will be announced December 9 2022 and winners will be notified via email
  • December 12, 2022: Pitch Polish with JDRF T1D Fund
  • December 13, 2022: Live Pitch and awards

Register here by 11:59 pm PDT Sept 1 2022


Participant Requirements

  • Attend a kick-off meeting for the Challenge
  • Attend regular check-ins over the course of the Challenge
  • Utilize multiple online resources to develop a hypothesis relevant to the mechanisms, treatment or sequelae of T1D
  • Manage data according to FAIR practices for sound science
  • Share protocol through
  • Use online tools to provide preliminary in silico data to test hypothesis
  • Present work in a written and oral form to a panel of judges


Submission Packet Details

FORMAT: 3-5 page write up. Font is Ariel 11, with half inch margins as per NIH style. Single spaced. Submitted as a single PDF document to  EASY CHAIR  You will have access to EASY CHAIR HERE via a LINK. You will need to open an account on EASY CHAIR by Nov 15, 2022.

  1. Cover Page: Title of your hypothesis submission, name of D-Challenge team, contact person
    • Section A: Hypothesis Proposal
  • Abstract-  30 lines
    •  Open science is encouraged but you have the option to protect IP in generalist language
  • Brief statement of your work that can be shared publicly by the D-Challenge – (3-4) lines in length.
  • Hypothesis – up to 3 pages
  • Potential study design – up to 1 page
  • Author list, affiliations, funding acknowledgements – up to 1 page
    • Section B: Protocol from (PDF)
    • Section C: Table of resources used, how and when in the process, RRIDs (PDF) [should include: Resource Name, URL/Website, RRID, Use in challenge].  RRIDs can be found for resources at:
    • Section D: References
    • Section E: Conflict of Interest – i.e. relationship with any of the tools or teams used in the Challenge


TERMS and Conditions of D-CHALLENGE participation:

By participating in the  D-CHALLENGE, you agree to submit your team’s original work. the(sugar)science and dkNET reserve the right to share information about any winners and their work with the public. Teams may have up to 6 members. Your team will retain it’s intellectual property (“IP”) and you will decide within your team how to distribute this. Team science is a new and powerful concept and discussions by teams should occur at the start of the Challenge.

Participating in the D-CHALLENGE will result in you becoming a member on the(sugar)science and dkNET and receiving their monthly newsletters, from which you can unsubscribe at any time.

Recognizing the global nature of this competition, you expressly agree to assume any and all risks involved in or arising from your participation in this competition and release D-Challenge, dkNET and the(sugar)science as well as all its assigns, agents and competition sponsors from any liability from your participation, and agree not to sue them on account of or in connection with any claims, causes of actions, injuries, damages, costs or expenses arising from your participation in this competition.

the(sugar)science/dkNET may cancel this competition at any time if less than 10 teams register. the(sugar)science and dkNET reserve the right not to award the Prize and to suspend the competition any time if a team does not follow all written rules and regulations.

Judges from the scientific community and dkNET will determine winners of the cash prizes. These cash awards are stipulated to be used only and specifically to forward the original research discovered in the course of the D-CHALLENGE.

We reserve the right to change these Terms and Conditions by posting changes on this document. By participating in the D-CHALLENGE, you agree to be bound by any such revisions and should therefore periodically visit this page to determine the then-current Terms and Conditions to which you are bound.