MRFF grants to support Monash research into COVID-19

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Three Monash University projects have received $10.8 million from the Medical Research Future Fund to support research that improves our understanding of COVID-19 and help develop new and enhanced treatments.

The grants are among 14 projects to receive $31.5 million under the latest round of MRFF grants.

The Monash projects include a study into antibodies and cellular immune responses after infection or vaccination in healthy and vulnerable people, a coordinated multiplatform randomised trial for hospitalised patients with COVID-19, and pre-clinical testing of novel inhaled RNA therapies for stability, safety and effectiveness against COVID-19.

Monash University President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Margaret Gardner AC said the funding supports projects that will make a real difference in progressing breakthroughs in the treatment of COVID-19.

“Monash academics have been at the forefront of COVID-19-related research and this funding recognises the significant contributions they continue to make in this important area. Congratulations to the research teams involved,” Professor Gardner said.

Deputy Dean of Research for the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Professor James Whisstock, said this latest round of MRFF funding recognises the significant breadth and diversity of research at Monash and speaks to our focus on healthy, thriving communities.

“This funding will help continue to progress some of our most important research programs to make a positive difference. Many congratulations to all the researchers and their fantastic teams,” Professor Whisstock said.

The MRFF-funded projects are:

PROPHECY: Profiling immune response in paediatric and high-risk populations to SARS-CoV-2 – $6,330,000
Led by Associate Professor Menno van Zelm

A coordinated multiplatform randomised trial for hospitalised patients with COVID-19 – $3,997,914.20
Led by Professor Steven Webb

Pre-clinical testing of novel inhaled RNA therapies for stability, safety and effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2 to demonstrate proof of concept – $500,000
Led by Professor Merlin Thomas

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