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LifeArc creates £10m COVID-19 research fund

Medical research charity joins efforts against coronavirus

LifeArc

UK-based medical research charity LifeArc has launched a £10m fund in support of research efforts against the novel coronavirus, which causes the disease COVID-19.

The fund will be used to accelerate the development and testing of any potential therapeutics that could be fast-tracked for the treatment of the symptoms of COVID-19.

As such, LifeArc is calling for applications from academics or companies that have molecules already in development or in their libraries that could be reused for the treatment of the novel coronavirus.

“COVID-19 represents a global emergency. The development and manufacture of a vaccine is at least a year away. There is a clear, urgent need now for treatments that can reduce the mortality and morbidity rate,” said Melanie Lee, CEO of LifeArc.

“We have launched this research call to try to speed up the process of investigating potential treatments and so improve outcomes for patients,” she added.

Research applications are set to be reviewed by an expert scientific panel, using criteria that includes the scientific rationales, deliverability of the project in a short time frame and the clarity on the manufacture and accessibility of the drug.

Applications are open from today – 20 March – and are set to close on 6 April, with funding decisions set to be made by the week commencing 27 April.

“We are aware of a number of potential drugs where there is a scientific rationale for testing but no funding to do that,” said Andrew Farquharson, executive director, Technology Transfer, LifeArc.

“With this funding we aim to progress those therapeutics and we are looking for proposals that offer the best chance of quickly making a difference,” he added.

Article by
Lucy Parsons

20th March 2020

From: Research

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