Coronavirus: Commission steps up research funding with €120 million for 11 new projects to tackle the virus and its variants

The Commission has short-listed 11 new projects worth €120 million from Horizon Europe, the biggest European research and innovation programme (2021-2027), for supporting and enabling urgent research into the coronavirus and its variants. This funding is part of a wide range of research and innovation actions taken to fight the coronavirus and contributes to the Commission’s overall action to prevent, mitigate and respond to the impact of the virus and its variants, in line with the new European bio-defence preparedness plan HERA Incubator.

The 11 short-listed projects involve 312 research teams from 40 countries, including 38 participants from 23 countries outside of the EU.

Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, Mariya Gabriel, said: “The European Union has been taking strong action to fight the coronavirus crisis. Today we are stepping up our research efforts to meet the challenges and threats that coronavirus variants present. By supporting these new research projects and reinforcing and opening relevant research infrastructures, we continue to fight this pandemic as well as prepare for future threats.”

Most of the projects will support clinical trials for new treatments and vaccines, as well as the development of large scale, coronavirus cohorts and networks beyond Europe’s borders, forging links with European initiatives. Other projects will reinforce and widen access to the research infrastructures providing services, or needed to share data, expertise, and research resources among researchers, to enable research addressing coronavirus and its variants. These infrastructures include those already active such as the European COVID-19 Data Platform and the relevant European Life Science Research Infrastructures.

The successful consortia will collaborate with other relevant initiatives and projects at national, regional, and international level to maximise synergies and complementarity and avoid duplication of the research efforts. They will contribute to building the European Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA), which will enable the EU to anticipate and better tackle future pandemics.

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