In the IBO blog’s fourth look at coronavirus-related R&D funding, the focus is on announcements made in May. Governments continue to make large commitments, with funding ultimately designated for universities, research institutes, the private sector, and infectious disease research organizations that will coordinate efforts to funnel money to all three sectors. These organizations include CEPI (Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations) and the Gates Foundation’s COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.
|Selected May 2020 COVID-19 Related R&D Funding Announcements|
|Australia||Australian universities and research institutes, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND)||AUD 352 million ($231 million)||Of the total amount, AUD 337 million ($221 million) will go to domestic research efforts addressing vaccines, diagnostics, therapeutics and respiratory medicine. The remainder will be evenly divided between CEPI and FIND, with each receiving AUD 15 million ($10 million). The pledge was part of the EU-led Coronavirus Global Response, which has raised €7.4 billion ($8.1 billion) so far from countries worldwide.|
|UK||University of Oxford, Imperial College of London||£84 million ($103 million)||On May 17, the UK government pledged £65.5 million ($80.2 million) to the University of Oxford and £18.5 million ($22.7 million) to Imperial College London for vaccine development, as well as manufacturing. The funding was announced in conjunction with Oxford University’s licensing agreement with AstraZeneca that could lead to 100 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine for the UK. Clinical trials for the vaccine being developed by Imperial College are scheduled for June.|
|Scotland||Scottish universities via the Scottish Funding Council||£75 million ($92 million)||The funding is intended to meet financial shortfalls at the country’s universities caused by COVID-19. The Scottish Funding Council estimates the universities’ annual total losses at £72 million ($92 million). Areas of emphasis include support for PhD students.|
|Massachusetts Consortium on Pathogen Readiness (MassCPR)||Fifteen university and research organizations in Massachusetts||$16.5 million||The investments will go toward 62 R&D projects, including diagnostics development, vaccine research and basic research. The projects were chosen because of their “strong likelihood to impact patients within a year” and includes 16 multidisciplinary projects. MassCRP was formed by Harvard University, the Guangzhou Institute of Respiratory Health in China and the China Evergrande Group. The projects were chosen from 448 applications that were submitted in March.|
|European Commission||Czech Republic||€7.3 million ($8.0 million)||The investment, part of the EU’s Temporary Framework to support member state economies, will go toward coronavirus R&D, including direct grants to companies in all product sectors. The grants will fund 75% of R&D costs.|