More funding for bird flu research
The Medical Research Council (MRC) in the UK has announced the launch
of a major research project into the threat of bird
The MRC has allocated an additional Â£10 million (around 14.7 million euro) in
research funds, which will be used to investigate the threat of the H5N1 virus,
particularly the potential for a flu pandemic.
Ten research grants,
with a total value of Â£4 million (around 5.8 million euro), have so far been
awarded in the UK. The grants are intended to enable scientists to look at the
source, spread and potential cure for the virus.
Smith, who chaired the awards panel, said: "We've funded research that was
academically excellent and urgently needed. In the coming months, we will work
with our partners to look again for gaps in research and consider how best to
"Once they've been identified, we'll invest in more
research later this year and next in our effort to combat the threat from H5N1
on all fronts."
The MRC has set aside an additional Â£3.5 million for
flu research later in the year and a further Â£5 million will be invested in
The call for extra funding came following a mission of MRC
experts who travelled to south-east Asia to discover more about the spread of
the avian flu virus.
Colin Blakemore, chief executive of the MRC,
said: "The investment has the potential to help find ways to reduce the effects
of the virus in people and animals and possibly to develop ways to stop the
spread of the virus."
To comment, login here
Or register to be able to comment.