The European Union has pledged €280m to a research project that will develop vaccines and diagnostic tests for Ebola.
The money will go to the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), a public-private partnership, with the European Commission contributing €140m and another €140m provided by drug companies.
The European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA), in partnership with the IMI, has issued a call for proposals that it hopes will make a “tangible contribution” to global efforts to tackle the current and future Ebola outbreaks.
Known as Ebola+, the first wave of the programme will fund projects in five areas: vaccine development; manufacturing capability; stability of vaccines during transport and storage; deployment and compliance of vaccination regimens; and rapid diagnostic tests.
The deadline for submitting proposals is 10 December 2014. The first projects are expected to begin in early 2015 with further calls for proposals being issued in the coming months.
Carlos Moedas, European commissioner for research, science and innovation, said in a statement: “The EU is determined to help find a solution to Ebola. We are putting our money where our mouth is and boosting EU research on Ebola with an additional €280m. With this funding from Horizon 2020 and our industry partners, we are stepping up the development of new vaccines and medications to help save lives around the world.”