Amid the worst public health emergency in a lifetime, UF Health leaders have taken steps to speed novel coronavirus research, recognizing the urgent need to provide answers and options to the communities they serve. In April, the CTSI and the Office of the Senior Vice President for Health Affairs created a $2 million pilot research fund for scientists with translational projects that can be rapidly mobilized. The RFA drew unprecedented interest from research teams and resulted in projects spanning colleges and the translational spectrum, all focused on a single, urgent issue. Read more about individual projects in the stories and news releases linked below, and watch recordings of online seminars given by awardees.
This RFA was designed to support projects that could be accomplished in six months or less and would contribute new knowledge that could inform the COVID-19 response and/or lay critical groundwork for subsequent research while extramural funding opportunities emerged.
The CTSI COVID-19 Task Force supports the rapid-response pilot awards.
Associate Professor, Institute for Therapeutic Innovation, UF College of Medicine
Associate Professor, Department of Pharmacotherapy and Translational Research, UF College of Pharmacy
ssistant Professor of Neurosurgery and Pediatrics, Principal Investigator of the RNA Engineering Laboratory, Preston A. Wells, Jr. Center for Brain Tumor Therapy, UF Brain Tumor Immunotherapy Program.
The Translational Science of COVID-19 Seminar Series features UF investigators funded by the Rapid-Response Translational Research Projects to Address COVID-19 Pandemic pilot program.
News and Updates
University of Florida Health researcher Mark Brantly, M.D., and his team are working to evaluate a drug treatment for the novel coronavirus that might block the deadly inflammatory response caused by the disease that curtails the lungs’ ability to function.
A new study by University of Florida researchers aims to identify a drug or drugs that can potentially be used to prevent and/or treat infection with COVID-19 by interfering with a known behavior of the virus — the way it binds to its cellular receptor, facilitating transmission to the respiratory system.
All Pilot Project Awardees
|Scott Brakenridge, MD, MSCS||Medicine||Surgery||Immunophenotyping the COVID-19 Hospitalized Patients|
|Ashley Brown, PhD||Medicine||Medicine||Identification of effective antivirals against SARS-CoV-2|
|Jürgen Bulitta, PhD||Pharmacy||Pharmacotherapy||Developing innovative therapeutic strategies to combating Sars-CoV-2|
|Robert Burne, PhD||Dentistry||Oral Biology||Antiviral Potential of Commensal Streptococci|
|Carma Bylund, PhD||Journalism | Medicine||Public Relations | Hematology/Oncology||Doctor-Patient Cancer Communications through Telemedicine during COVID-19|
|Benoit Giasson, PhD||Medicine||Neuroscience||Novel antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein for therapeutic targeting|
|Yan Gong, PhD||Pharmacy||Pharmacotherapy & Translational Research||Genomics and Pharmacogenomics of susceptibility and severity of COVID-19 in the UK Biobank|
|Christopher Harle, PhD||Medicine||Health Outcomes & Biomedical Informatics||Rapid Development of Pandemic Models for Actionable Clinical and Administrative Decision Support|
|Frederic Kaye, MD||Medicine||Hematology & Oncology||Randomized trial of bicalutamide to block TMPRSS2 in males with COVID-19 infection|
|David Marra, PhD||Public Health & Health Professions||Clinical & Health Psychology||Investigating Prevalence and Impact of Neurologic Manifestation in COVID-19 Positive Patients:A OneFlorida Research Consortium Study|
|Peter McFetridge, PhD||Engineering||Biomedical Engineering||A Novel Approach to Induce Rapid Healing, and Minimize Proinflammatory Responses in Covid-19 critical care patients: A pilot stud|
|Sarah McKune, PhD||Public Health & Health Professions||Environmental & Global Health||Characterization of COVID-19 Infection and Family Resilience in Symptomatic and Asymptomatic School-Age Children|
|Lisa Merck, MD||Medicine||Emergency Medicine||Epidemiology of COVID-19 in First Responders|
|David Pascual, PhD||Veterinary Medicine||Infectious Diseases & Pathology||Mucosal Subunit Vaccines for SARS-CoV-2|
|Leah Reznikov, PhD||Veterinary Medicine||Physiological Sciences||Targeted disruption of ACE2-SARS-CoV-2 interactions using small molecules|
|Nicola Sambuco, PhD||Public Health & Health Professions||Clinical & Health Psychology||Exposure to COVID-19 trauma and risk factors for developing psychopathology|
|Gregory Sawyer, PhD||Engineering||Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering||CLEARED: Culture of Living-biopsies for Emerging Airway-pathogens and REspiratory Disease (3D printing of lungs and SARS-Cov2)|
|Elias Sayour, MD, PhD||Medicine||Neurosurgery||Nanoparticle vaccines targeting SARS CoV 2|
|Christopher Vulpe, MD, PhD||Veterinary Medicine||Physiological Sciences||Identification of host determinants of SARS-CoV-2 infection|