Government of Canada funds 49 additional COVID-19 research projects

News release

Update: (August 8, 2020): Following a recent application process review, an additional grant was funded, bringing the total number of funded grants to 140 and a total investment of $111.1 million.

Update (June 19, 2020): Following a recent application process review, an additional grant was funded, bringing the total number of funded grants to 100 and a total investment of $55.3M.

Update (April 2, 2020): Through a contribution from Research Manitoba, Research Nova Scotia, and Alberta Innovates, CIHR was able to fund an additional three grants, bringing the total number of funded grants to 99 and a total investment of $54.2M.

March 19, 2020 – Ottawa, Ontario – Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Government of Canada has consulted with experts from around the world and supported Canadian researchers to help combat this new coronavirus.

On March 11, 2020, the Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, outlined an investment of $275 million to enhance Canada’s capacity in research and development, as part of Canada’s COVID-19 response, including research on medical countermeasures, including antivirals, vaccine development and support for clinical trials.

Thanks to this new investment in research, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Canada’s Minister of Health, today announced the next rollout of $25.8 million, allowing the Government of Canada, through the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, to rapidly double the number of COVID-19 research projects funded, adding 49 new projects to the 47 projects previously announced on March 6. That brings the total to 96 projects led by researchers across the country that will focus on developing and implementing measures to rapidly detect, manage, and reduce the transmission of COVID-19.


“The outbreak of COVID-19 evolves quickly, and protecting the health of Canadians is our priority. The additional teams of researchers receiving funding today will help Canada quickly generate the evidence we need to contribute to the global understanding of the COVID-19 illness. Their essential work will contribute to the development of effective vaccines, diagnostics, treatments, and public health responses.”

The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health

Quick facts

  • On March 6, the Government of Canada announced an investment of $26.8M over two years to support 47 research projects on coronavirus. Today’s new funding of $25.8M for 49 projects brings the total investment to $52.6M for this research response supporting 96 research teams from across the country.

  • The Government of Canada provided the funding ($26.8M) for the first wave of COVID-19 research projects through the CIHR, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), the Canada Research Coordinating Committee (CRCC) through the New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF), the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), and Genome Canada (GC).

  • The research priorities for this call were informed by ongoing dialogue with the Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness (GloPID-R), of which Canada is a member; through Canada’s participation at the World Health Organization (WHO)-GLoPID-R research and innovation forum of February 11-12, 2020 in Geneva; and by the WHO R&D Blueprint on COVID-19.

Associated links


Media Relations
Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Cole Davidson
Office of the Minister of Health

At the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) we know that research has the power to change lives. As Canada's health research investment agency, we collaborate with partners and researchers to support the discoveries and innovations that improve our health and strengthen our health care system.

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