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Three Oxford-based COVID-19 projects are among the first to benefit from a share of £20 million in government investment.

A bird's eye view of Oxford © Greg Smolonski

The three projects include work on an effective vaccine, enabling pre-clinical and clinical vaccine trials, as well as supporting researchers to develop manufacturing processes to produce a vaccine at a million-dose scale. Another project will examine how existing treatments could be repurposed to treat coronavirus.

Business Secretary Alok Sharma said, 'Whether testing new drugs or examining how to repurpose existing ones, UK scientists and researchers have been working tirelessly on the development of treatments for coronavirus. The projects we are funding today will be vital in our work to support our valuable NHS and protect people’s lives.'

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said, 'In the midst of a global health emergency the UK is using all its extensive research expertise to quickly develop new vaccines to target this international threat. This investment will speed up globally-recognised vaccine development capabilities and help us find a new defence against this disease.'

The projects receiving funding are supporting and encouraging the UK’s world-class researchers and experts to speed up coronavirus research including developing new vaccines and treatments. Oxford's funded projects are:

  • Professor Sarah Gilbert, (Jenner Institute, Nuffield Department of Medicine), £2.2 million for vaccine development and trials
  • Professor Peter Horby, (Centre for Tropical Medicine & Global Health, Nuffield Department of Medicine), £2.1 million for research into the effectiveness of current drugs on COVID-19
  • Dr Sandy Douglas, (Nuffield Department of Medicine), £0.4 million, research into vaccine manufacturing capabilities

Read the full story, including details of the funded projects, on the University of Oxford website