The Committee on budget and planning (VATAT) with the Council for higher education of Israel (MALAG) approved the research grant programme, aimed at combating the epidemic and the study of the pathogenesis of coronavirus. The program will be funded from the budget VATAT and charitable foundations – “Poison and Nadiv”, family trust Kellerman, Foundation Russell berrie Foundation and Wolfson.
The epidemic of coronavirus in the world, including in Israel, has created an acute need for development of applied research on issues related to the spread and pathogenesis of the virus. For this reason, WATT decided to allocate up to NIS 7 million (almost 2.5 million USD), with the contribution from charitable funds (up to a total of 14 million NIS), to research, to be held on an expedited schedule.
Research can be conducted using different methods in areas such as: immunology, Virology, pharmacology, molecular biology and Cytology, epidemiology, artificial intelligence, robotics, engineering, and interdisciplinary studies, writes newsru.co.il.
The program will be implemented by the National science Foundation. The selection of projects will be in accordance with scientific criteria and, given the potential for their implementation in the context of deterrence of the spread of coronavirus, and the calling them sickness in the short and medium term.
The beneficiaries of research grants under this program will have already at the time of filing of the application immediately and fully commit to submit research results to the scientific community in Israel and abroad. For this reason, soon will be developed a rigorous mechanism to access the relevant information obtained from these studies.
It is expected to enrol approximately 30 projects with a grant size in 180-720 thousand shekels each (from 60 to 240 thousand U.S. dollars). Funding earmarked for studies that will last from six months to a year and, if necessary, up to two years. The deadline for submitting applications for a grant – April 7, 2020. The deadline for submission of full proposals after the approval of the academic Board – April 21, 2020.
Examples of relevant research for the applicants of the grant:
– Development of new approaches for the detection of the virus among the population
– Study of the mechanism of viral infection and the development of new technologies to fight infection
– Characterization of the immunological aspects associated with suppression of virus
– Serology of the disease COVID-19
– Assistance in the development of passive or active vaccine COVID-19
– Development of reliable models of disease COVID-19 in the cellular tissues or experimental animals
– The study of the properties of existing drugs, which can have a deterrent effect on a disease caused by a virus
– Development of new drugs from the virus
Genetic, epigenetic factors and environmental factors affecting infection and disease, and predicting future outbreaks
Epidemiological studies COVID-19 having a value for generating the strategy of public health system.