In response to the COVID-19 disaster, the Larger Schooling Fee (HEC) launched a Fast Analysis Grant (RRG) in April 2020 to interact academia in analysis across the scientific administration of the epidemic.
The grant goals to encourage educational analysis to strengthen scientific administration and public well being response in opposition to this virus.
Beneath the specialised analysis initiative, potential venture proposals had been invited to contribute to the much-needed understanding of the coronaviruses — the Extreme Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and COVID-19.
Contemplating the time-crunch, a specialised panel was constituted and tasked to finish the shortlisting in 3-4 weeks. Greater than 300 functions had been obtained for the grant. After impartial evaluations, 58 proposals had been shortlisted primarily based on the already introduced eligibility standards and different necessities.
Later, these proposals had been collectively reviewed by specialists of Medical and Organic Sciences, and Engineering and Know-how. After rigorous evaluate, 10 proposals had been shortlisted for the final stage.
The finances for every RRG award is as much as a most of Rs. 15 million (USD 100,000) with a most venture period of 12 months. These analysis initiatives supply quite a lot of pragmatic solution-oriented analysis, starting from early detection diagnostic kits to immune response and understanding the virus’s habits.
The proposals from 10 universities have been finalized. The College of Punjab received two grants — one for indigenous, low-cost manufacturing of ultra-pure Taq Polymerase and PCR combine for COVID-19 scientific diagnostic kits, and the opposite for the event of a dependable, economical, and excessive throughput serodiagnosis methodology for early detection of COVID-19.
COMSATS College Islamabad has received one grant for the event of RT-LAMP assay for early detection of COVID-19, whereas Nationwide Textile College, Faisalabad analysis will give attention to the event of bioactive hospital textiles and protecting fits in opposition to viruses and micro organism by immobilization of nanomaterials.
The College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore has received the analysis grant for epidemiological illness modeling and molecular surveillance of SARS-CoV-2, whereas DOW College of Well being Sciences, Karachi can be engaged on IVIG manufacturing from the convalescent plasma of COVID-19 survivors, a low threat, high-efficiency passive immunization technique in opposition to SARS-CoV-2. Apparently, the take a look at outcomes of DOW college analysis are already very promising.
Different venture winners embrace the College of Well being Sciences, Lahore (Immunological Virology and Genetic Foundation of COVID-19 Sufferers), Lahore College of Administration Sciences (Mapping Immune Response to SARS-COv2 utilizing a multidisciplinary strategy), Aga Khan College, Karachi (Phylo- and Immuno- dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 an infection in Pakistan: relating COVID-19 illness severity in with viral range) and Well being Companies Academy (HSA), Islamabad (Computational Modelling for COVID-19 Epidemic in Pakistan: Predictive Modelling of Illness Morbidity, Mortality, and Evaluation of Calls for on the Intensive Care Items).
To make sure top quality of analysis, college members from these universities had been inspired to collaborate with the non-public sector and trade, each inside and out of doors Pakistan, as wanted.
HEC funded hundreds of analysis initiatives prior to now, and this has led to greater than 20,000 analysis articles printed in acknowledged journals final yr. With the supply of RRGs, HEC hopes that educational researchers will come ahead to contribute to higher well being techniques dealing with real-life challenges.