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Pandemic preparedness and response: Host-pathogen interactions of infectious diseases with epidemic potential

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Pandemic preparedness and response: Host-pathogen interactions of infectious diseases with epidemic potential

Programme: Horizon Europe Framework Programme (HORIZON) Opening Date: 26 October 2023 Deadline Date: 11 April 2024, 17:00 Brussels time

Expected Outcome: This call aims to enhance the scientific and clinical communities' understanding and capabilities in tackling diseases with epidemic potential. It focuses on achieving the following outcomes:

· Increased knowledge of viruses with epidemic potential, particularly understanding pathogen-host interactions for vaccine and inhibitor development.

· Novel approaches for prevention and treatment of emerging and re-emerging infections, supporting epidemic and pandemic preparedness.

· Access to experimental vaccine candidates and inhibitors for cellular uptake of viruses for clinical investigation.

· A diverse and robust development pipeline of vaccine candidates and inhibitors to combat emerging and re-emerging viral infections, enhancing clinical options during epidemics or pandemics.


Tackling diseases and reducing disease burden:

Unlocking the full potential of new tools, technologies and digital solutions for a healthy society:

Maintaining an innovative, sustainable and globally competitive health industry:

Scope: Addressing the accelerated threat of infectious diseases, highlighted by the COVID-19 pandemic, this call stresses the need for proactive development of vaccines and inhibitors. It targets pathogens with high pandemic potential as identified by the Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA), focusing on:

· Hendra and Nipah virus, Lassa virus, Crimean Congo haemorrhagic fever virus, Rift Valley fever virus, Ebola and Marburg virus, Dengue virus, Yellow Fever virus, Zika virus, West Nile fever virus, and Chikungunya virus.

Research Areas: Proposals should innovate in characterizing host-pathogen interactions to inhibit viral activities and develop therapeutic antibodies and vaccines. Key areas include:

· Identifying and characterizing host cell receptors and viral surface proteins for virus docking and internalisation.

· Understanding the mechanism of viral uptake in host cells.

· Targeting receptor and ligand units for intervention.

Collaboration Opportunity: Inclusion of the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) for its Nanobiotechnology laboratory, expertise, and regulatory interface is encouraged. Collaboration with JRC should be established post-approval.

Clinical Studies: Proposals including clinical studies must detail their plans using the provided template in the submission system.

Aim: The call seeks to diversify and accelerate the therapeutic R&D pipeline for viral infections, reinforcing the EU's leadership in therapeutic development and contributing to HERA's efforts.


· Open to consortia that can address the call's comprehensive goals and collaborate internationally.

This funding opportunity invites ambitious projects that aim to significantly advance the prevention and treatment of viral infections with pandemic potential, ensuring the EU remains at the forefront of global health security and innovation.

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