26 March 2020
Applications are now open for the latest National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) funding in response to COVID-19.
This Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF) Coronavirus Research Response Initiative grant opportunity will identify antiviral candidates targeting SARS-CoV-2 (new and repurposed) and accelerate promising effective treatments that can be made available to treat Australians infected with SARS-CoV-2.
The ongoing respiratory illness outbreak caused by transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus represents a significant and urgent threat to global health, with numerous cases documented world-wide, including Australia. There are currently no treatments specifically targeting the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The development of novel antiviral treatments is one way to improve protection against COVID-19.
Given the rapidly evolving nature of the COVID-19 outbreak, the grant opportunity requires applicants to propose research to rapidly identify antiviral candidates that can be accelerated into clinical practice. A competitive two stage funding process will be used.
Funding of up to $3 million will be provided to support testing of up to 10 antiviral candidates for stability, safety and effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2 to demonstrate proof of concept. Stage 1 projects are to be completed within 9 months of commencement of Stage 1. In addition:
Funding of up to $5 million will support acceleration of promising antiviral candidates from Stage 1 into clinical practice, enabling clinical trials in humans, progression through regulatory pathways and/or transition to commercialisation. Stage 2 projects are to be completed within 24 months of commencement of Stage 2. In addition:
Applicants will be expected to demonstrate capacity to quickly establish partnerships that will provide access to critical resources necessary to complete the project. This may include access to SARS-CoV-2 material, relevant animal models and appropriate biohazard containment facilities.
Applicants should also provide details of how funding will leverage other complementary funding sources.
This grant opportunity is being administered by NHMRC on behalf of the Commonwealth Department of Health. This opportunity is supported by the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF).
Further information on the Medical Research Future Fund is available on the Department’s website at: https://www.health.gov.au/mrff.
Find out how to apply for funding and where to go for application assistance here.