The K99-R00 program in an interesting one from the point of view of evaluation since this program has cohorts of investigators who begin at approximately the same career stage and then progress through several transitions into independent careers. These different career stages should be reflected in different positions in the author list for publications. Below is a plot of the total number of publications, the number of first author publications, the number of last author publications, and the number of sole author publications per investigator per year for 132 investigators who received K99 awards in FY2007 and went on to receive an R00 award. No attempt was made to correct for joint first authors or for joint corresponding authors.
As anticipated, this plot reveals that, prior to receiving the K99 award, these investigators (on average) publish an approximately equal mixture of first author and middle author publications with very few last author publications. A year after the receipt of the K99 award, the number of first author publications per year begins to drop while the number of last author publications grows. This increase in last author publications is associated with an increase in the average number of total publications per year. Note that the dotted lines leading to 2014 results reflects that fact that the data do not include all publications for calendar year 2014.
These data reflect the full cohort of 2007 K99 awardees for which reliable publication data were compiled without regard to the year that each investigator transitioned to the R00 phase. The data separated according to R00 groups, with 50 investigators who received R00 awards in FY2007 or FY2008, 63 investigators who received R00 awards in FY2009, and 19 investigators who received R00 awards in FY2010 or later, are shown in the plot below:
Again, as anticipated, the transition from first author publications to last author publications occurs earliest for the 2007,8 R00 cohort, later for the 2009 R00 cohort, and latest for the 2010,11 R00 cohort.
In addition, the first plot includes both investigators who have been successful in obtain R01s or similar awards from NIH as well as those who have not. These results for these two groups are shown below:
The number of first author publications appears to be slightly higher for those who have received R01s than for those who have not. The number of last author and other publications is higher for those who have received R01s after receiving the K99 awards, but this likely largely a consequence of the science performed with the supports of the R01 support.