© 2019 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
Coronavirus: EU offers €10 million for research on possible cure to virus
THE European Commission has announced the release of research funds worth €10 million for scientists to hasten clinical discovery that would cure the novel coronavirus.
The EU ‘emergency request’ comes on the heels of the World Health Organisation declaration that made the outbreak a public health emergency of global concern last week Thursday after the death of over 200 persons in Wuhan, China where the virus first originated.
The funding which is to support between two and four research projects would contribute to more efficient and clinical management of patients infected with the virus, and enhance public health preparedness and response.
“Applicants have until February 12 to respond to the competition, and grant agreements should also be signed very quickly,” said the commission.
We are working on all fronts to fight #Coronavirus:
– Supported repatriation of 447 EU citizens from Wuhan
– Helping Chinese authorities provide protective equipment
– Providing supplies
– @eu_echo coordinating EU assistance
– €10M for vaccine researchhttps://t.co/lm54i4pTc3 pic.twitter.com/n2fYIq2bO1
— European Commission 🇪🇺 (@EU_Commission) February 3, 2020
Mariya Gabriel, the commissioner for innovation, research, culture, education and youth, said that the step was necessary to mitigate consequences of a potential larger spread of the coronavirus outbreak in the EU.
“Our supercomputer centres stand ready to help researchers in their work to develop new treatment and vaccines,” Gabriel said, adding that grants would be subject to “rapid data-sharing clauses” to facilitate the rapid application of findings.
Since the outbreak, the virus has spread to over 22 countries including the United States, Germany, and the United Kingdom has claimed the lives of over 500 in China alone despite different countermeasures that have been deployed to curb the spread of the disease, including imposing travel bans and upscale checks at airports.