£5m granted to University of Edinburgh to help understand and fight COVID-19

The University will collect samples from more than a thousand patients as part of the research.

By Conor Matchett
Monday, 23rd March 2020, 5:00 pm

Scientists and researchers at the University of Edinburgh will be at the forefront of the battle against coronavirus after receiving £5 million in funding to tackle the disease.

Dr Kenneth Baillie, who works as an academic consultant in critical care medicine at the University, secured the funding from the Medical Research Council (MRC).

He will work in partnership with Professor Peter Openshaw from Imperial College London and Professor Calum Semple from the University of Liverpool during the research.

The University of Edinburgh has received £5m in research funding to fight coronavirus

The projects aims to increase understanding of COVID-19 and its impact on the body, with samples to be collected from 1,300 patients across the United Kingdom.

The data on the virus will provide real-time information and could help to control the outbreak and improve treatment for patients.

Researchers will focus on who in the population is at a higher risk of severe illness and will investigate if people are infected with other viruses such as flu at the same time.

The joint MRC and University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research (CVR) will also play a part in the project, sequencing the entire genome of the virus.

Dr Kenneth Baillie said: “Covid-19 is completely new disease and presents so many unanswered questions.

“Through analysis of samples from 1,300 people, we can increase our understanding of how Covid-19 makes some people desperately sick. This in turn will help inform how we can best treat the disease.”