QNRF supports global initiative
May 28 2015 11:17 PM

Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF), a member of Qatar Foundation Research and Development (QF R&D), has joined a global partnership to award seed funding to six public health research teams to fight infectious diseases.
Independent non-profit CRDF Global announced yesterday that the partnership involves the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
The 2014 US-Qatar-Middle East and North Africa (Mena) Infectious Disease Research Initiative was envisioned to establish new biomedical collaborations between US, Qatar, and Mena investigators and institutions.
This grant initiative is CRDF Global’s fourth with NIAID and first with QNRF to support international research on emerging and endemic infectious diseases in Mena.
The collaborations and research findings generated by the grants seek to lay foundations for awardees to pursue future funding applications to NIH, QNRF, and other agencies.
The grant initiative is administered by CRDF Global, an organisation that promotes international scientific and technical collaboration through grants, technical resources, training and services in more than 40 countries.
CRDF Global is facilitating the grant competition management, peer review and award administration on behalf of NIH and QNRF. Each award will be up to $40,000 for one year.
Collaborative research teams consisting of investigators from the US, Qatar, and Mena were eligible to apply. Each team had to include at least one researcher from an institution represented at the Endemic and Emerging Viral Infectious Diseases of Priority in Mena meeting in Doha in May 2014. The meeting and follow-on grant initiative focused on viral infectious diseases.
The 2014 US-Qatar-Mena Infectious Disease Research Initiative award finalists are the following : Sudan-Qatar Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (Mers-CoV) survey: Supreme Council of Health (Qatar) and University of Gezira (Sudan) - Seroepidemiological survey of infection with Mers-CoV in humans and camels from Butana area, Sudan (2014-2015).
Jordan-US genotyping: Jordan University Hospital (Jordan) and Vanderbilt University Medical Centre (US) - Rhinovirus genotyping in Amman. Jordan-US Mers-CoV discovery: University of Jordan (Jordan) and Purdue University (US) - Discovery of novel Mers-coronavirus 3CLprotease inhibitors by combined structure-based and ligand-based virtual screening followed by in vitro validation and structural studies.
Saudi Arabia-US molecular profiling for Mers patients: King Saud University (Saudi Arabia) and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (US) - A pilot study to perform molecular profiling of the neutralising antibody repertoire in convalescent plasma of Mers-corona virus infected patients.
 Iran-US HIV infection detection: Pasteur Institute of Iran (Iran) and University of Maryland, Baltimore (US) - p31-based immunoassays for detection of recent HIV infection. Morocco-US Hepatitis E study: Pasteur Institute of Morocco (Morocco) and Emory University, School of Medicine (US) - Hepatitis E virus in Immunosuppressed patients in Morocco.
Finalists from CRDF Global and NIAID’s previous grant initiatives in Mena have studied diseases such as cholera, avian influenza virus (H5N1), and leishmaniasis. In the first three cycles, the programme awarded 18 teams with over $460,000 in biomedical research funding.
CRDF Global is an independent, non-profit organisation established in 1995 to promote international scientific and technical collaboration through grants, technical resources, training, and services. CRDF Global has 20 years of experience managing international research funding programmes and supporting emerging science and technology infrastructure in more than 40 countries in Eurasia, the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

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