The Complutense University of Madrid leads ANTICIPA, an 8.5 million euro research project to find tools against the COVID-19 pandemic.
April 25, 2022

The ANTICIPA project, financed by the Community of Madrid with 8.5 million euros from the European Union, involves researchers from the Faculties of Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Pharmacy, Biological Sciences, Chemical Sciences, Optics, Psychology, Mathematics and Information Sciences, under the coordination of Professor José Manuel Bautista, Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and coordinator of the COVID-19 diagnostic laboratories at the UCM.

Prevention and applied research with the generation of diagnostic tools, drugs and new immunogens that can become second-generation vaccines and novel disinfection systems are the axes of this project that will establish innovative strategies to provide personalized medicine and protection from infection and severe symptoms of COVID-19.

 It is expected that the ANTICIPA project will also enable the development in the near future of new structures for epidemiological analysis and collective response to this and other pandemics.

Madrid, April 20, 2022 – The Complutense University of Madrid is leading the ANTICIPA project, subsidized by the Community of Madrid, which will develop new diagnostic, preventive and therapeutic products, as well as epidemiological models that will enable the control of the pandemic and at the same time provide early warning and resilience services to the community and the groups in our environment. A project to which the Community of Madrid has granted eight and a half million euros from the ERDF funds received from the European Union.

ANTICIPA aims to materialize in the short term the results obtained to date by 42 research groups that are already cooperating synergistically to provide both the market and society with specific products and services of rapid application to COVID-19 and future pandemics. It is a multidisciplinary applied research project grouping 7 sub-projects with cooperative approaches to provide new knowledge in the field of SARS-CoV-2 infection and COVID-19 pandemic, with special emphasis on the Autonomous Community of Madrid.

The ANTICIPA project will address the prevention of this and future pandemics through a mixed approach of technology and applied research by creating 3 new technological platforms for the generation of new products in these areas:

I) Diagnostic systems for disease and immune protection status.

II) Disinfectant systems and products to control spaces free of COVID-19 and other pathogens.

III) Generation of new vaccine immunogens and their vehicles against COVID-19, as well as molecules that interfere with infection by the virus, tested in a preclinical trial platform.

The Complutense University of Madrid thus initiates a pioneering program so that its researchers and academics can organize themselves into teams and, with the help of communication specialists, offer an approach focused on service to society, complemented by some external partners interested in contributing to global projects. This public engagement includes reflection on the applicability of research results together with external partners, both companies and public and institutional sectors. The best way for science and intellectual property to have a real social impact is to promote the best forms of exploitation and valorization of the knowledge generated in the laboratories. In this sense, the Complutense University of Madrid has units in this ANTICIPA Program that will specialize in taking advantage of the new resources generated.

Finally, the Complutense University of Madrid wants a project like this to illustrate its capacity to integrate its scientists and academics in the resolution of social crises, as part of its vocation to make science open, reliable, efficient and relevant to society. The Complutense University of Madrid thus aims to be at the forefront of open and cooperative science with its social environment, launching its ANTICIPA Program, which aims to stimulate and facilitate the implementation of synergies among Complutense scientists to investigate the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as its harmful effects on individuals and groups, without forgetting to provide new knowledge in order to prevent future pandemics.

The ANTICIPA Program also aims to ensure that society takes full advantage of the potential benefits of COVID-19 research by making the results available, disseminating them to engage with potential users, as well as with funders and other research collaborators. This commitment and this open and dynamic communication also implies promoting specific actions in the academic community to awaken their interest in COVID-19 research and in other potential future pandemics integrated in the ONE-HEALTH concept that will allow the development of early containment strategies.