The Ministry of Economy, Knowledge, Business and University allocates 2.95 million euros to encourage scientific investigation on the SARS-COV-2 coronavirus and the disease COVID-19 in order to achieve a earlier diagnosis and more effective treatments that help minimize the effects of the pandemic.

This measure is included in the decree-law approved by the Andalusian Government, which includes extraordinary and urgent measures in the economic and social fields worth 94 million euros against the current health crisis.

New lines of investigation against COVID-19

With this public injection, financed with FEDER funds, the autonomous government intends, on the one hand, to support the opening of new lines of research to face the coronavirus, and on the other, promote those works previously developed in the community that delve into aspects related to this disease.

The grants, to be announced through the non-competitive mode of competition, are intended to finance R&D projects against COVID-19 that are of rapid application and that they are developed by public entities (universities and research centers) based in Andalusia. Companies may participate in these initiatives in association with these public centers.

Given the urgency to advance the investigation against this disease, the Ministry of Economy is finalizing the procedure to publish via the emergency route the order that regulates these grants and its corresponding call for receipt of proposals. In addition, to promote the implementation of these projects, the department headed by Rogelio Velasco has established as an exceptional measure that the total amount of the subsidies can be paid in advance, so that the research teams can immediately have the necessary means to advance their scientific activity.

Eight areas of interest

Incentives will support R&D lines in eight areas of interest with which it is intended to cover the entire spectrum of action against COVID-19. Thus, new materials and early detection systems in the asymptomatic population; the genomic and epidemiological studies infection and transmission mechanisms; wave cellular and molecular characterization of the SARS-COV-2 virus and its life cycle. Likewise, coverage will be given to new rapidly implantable therapies; to immune response and to the pathology and severity of the infection (immunotherapy); to techniques artificial intelligence applied to the analysis and control of the disease; as well as actions, protocols and organization systems in logistics management emergency; and the actions on the socio-economic impact of the COVID disease19.

Research projects will be evaluated by the Evaluation and Accreditation Directorate (DEVA) of the Andalusian Knowledge Agency (AAC), under the Ministry of Economy. For this, the creation within this body of a Scientific-Technical Evaluation Committee is planned, which will analyze the scientific-technical reports of the applications as quickly as possible according to criteria of scientific excellence and prioritizing those focused on well-defined questions. and short-term response.

its part, in the Ministry of Economy a Commission of
Follow-up, to be decided, based on previous work already done
by DEVA, the financing of each of the projects.

Start of formulation of the R&D Strategy

R + D + I Strategy of Andalusia (EIDIA) for the period 2021-2027,
whose start of formulation was approved in mid-March by the Council of
Government, will focus on research and technologies
biomedical care and continuity from next year
to research on vaccines, diagnosis and treatment against
the coronavirus.

EIDIA will lay the foundations for regional policy on
research and innovation for the next seven years will be
prepared by the Ministry of Economy, Knowledge, Business and
University and will replace the current Andalusian Research Plan,
Development and Innovation (PAIDI), which ends its validity this

new planning will ultimately aim to get for
Andalusia the highest levels of efficiency and competitiveness in
terms of research and innovation and thus contribute to a
smart, sustainable and inclusive growth that achieves a
knowledge-based economy.

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