Governor Rick Scott announced Wednesday 34 grant awards for Zika virus research following his authorization of $25 million in state funds for Zika research and vaccine development last fall. Grant funding will be used to help expedite the development of a vaccine to prevent Zika infection, understand and mitigate long-term impacts of Zika virus on children and adults and develop innovative, cost-effective Zika testing methods.
Governor Scott said, “I am proud to announce the recipients of these important research grants today. While we are currently in winter months when Zika is not as prevalent, we must remain vigilant and continue to do everything we can to help protect pregnant women and their developing babies. I look forward to seeing the innovation and progress of Florida’s world-class research institutions as we continue to work together in the fight against Zika and to find a vaccine.”
State Surgeon General and Secretary Dr. Celeste Philip said, “While we are currently experiencing a seasonal reprieve from the Zika virus, we cannot relax our efforts. I am grateful for Governor Scott’s leadership that enables us to provide researchers in Florida funds to expand the body of knowledge related to Zika, particularly in the areas of prevention and effects on infants and children.”
The Florida Department of Health (DOH) oversaw the grant process, which was awarded through a competitive process based on recommendations by the Biomedical Research Advisory Council. Researchers at any university or research institute in Florida were eligible to apply.
The following organizations received grant funding awards:
Florida Atlantic University – $199,280
Florida International University – $2,183,004
Florida State University – $2,169,675
Moffitt Cancer Center – $199,280
Nova Southeastern University – $198,886
The Scripps Research Institute – $199,280
University of Central Florida – $1,297,817
University of Florida – $2,922,999
University of Miami – $13,170,784
University of South Florida – $2,458,995