WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressmen Dutch Ruppersberger, John P. Sarbanes, and Kweisi Mfume (all D-Md.) today announced a $162,283 Rapid Research Response (RAPID) award for Johns Hopkins University (JHU) to conduct research into the replication process of SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). This research will advance efforts to design effective therapies while guarding against the possibility of drug resistance through viral mutation. The funding was authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act through the National Science Foundation (NSF).
“Like many other Maryland research institutions, Johns Hopkins is leading the way in finding effective therapies for the tens of thousands of Americans who have contracted COVID-19, and for those who will contract it in the future,” said the lawmakers. “Federal investments in high-caliber research projects like this one are absolutely critical in order to save lives and to help our society move beyond this pandemic.”
This year-long funding will begin on June 1, 2020. A full abstract and additional information on the award may be found through the NSF here.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act authorized $75 million to NSF to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, domestically or internationally, including to fund research grants and other necessary expenses. NSF is allocating funding to support research at molecular, cellular, physiological and ecological levels to better understand coronavirus genetics, modes of action, transmission, virulence and population dynamics. NSF will distribute this funding for research projects, including RAPID awards, at more than 2,000 research institutions across the United States. The RAPID funding mechanism allows NSF to receive and review proposals having a severe urgency with regard to availability of or access to data, facilities, or specialized equipment as well as quick-response research on natural or anthropogenic disasters and similar unanticipated events.
The delegation previously announced RAPID awards for to support research on the social consequences of stay at home orders at UMD, the connections between mobility and health outcomes at UMD, and to support the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 tracker.