Eleven Indo-US scientist teams selected to jointly scout for COVID 19 solutions

Eleven teams of Indian and US scientists will soon start jointly scouting for out of the box solutions ranging from novel early diagnostic tests, antiviral therapy, drug repurposing, ventilator research, disinfection machines, and sensor-based symptom tracking for COVID 19.

The teams have been selected to take up these initiatives through a rigorous binational review process of proposals received for an invitation under COVID-19 Ignition Grants in April 2020 issued by the U.S.-India Science and Technology Endowment Fund (USISTEF).

The USISTEF today announced the awards to eleven bilateral teams proposing out-of-the-box, innovative ideas to address the COVID-19 challenge. The USISTEF has been established by the Government of India (through the Department of Science & Technology) and the governments of the United States of America (through the Department of State) for the promotion of joint activities that would lead to innovation and entrepreneurship through the application of science and technology.

Congratulating the teams, Professor Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India and IUSSTF India Co-Chair, remarked “A strong response in a short time for co-development and commercialization of COVID-19 technologies and products demonstrates a wide spectrum of cooperation between India and the U.S. This partnership extends from the basic studies on the behavior of SARS-Cov-2 virus to its transmission to diagnostics and therapeutic approaches. Our existing strong cooperation in S&T on health, energy, artificial intelligence etc. also continues to bring value and attests to the importance of Indo-U.S. collaborations in providing compelling solutions”.

The joint U.S.-India S&T based entrepreneurial teams will work on initiatives that address the development and implementation of new technologies, tools, and systems to address COVID-19 related challenges including monitoring, diagnosis, health and safety, public outreach, information and communication.

As countries battle the COVID-19 pandemic, innovations in Science, Engineering, and Technology will play a critical role in finding solutions to this global challenge through the development of new vaccines, devices, diagnostic tools, and information systems, as well as strategies to help communities and nations manage and deploy resources to combat this pandemic.

In keeping with its’ mission and vision, the USISTEF announced the Call for Proposals under the category of COVID-19 Ignition Grants with the intent to support promising joint U.S.-India S&T based entrepreneurial initiatives to address the COVID-19 challenge.

The mission of the United States–India Science & Technology Endowment Fund is to support and foster joint applied R&D to generate public good through the commercialization of technology developed through partnerships between U.S. and Indian researchers and entrepreneurs to help combat this pandemic.

The bilateral Indo-U.S. Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF) administers all activities of the USISTEF program. Details of the Awardee projects can be accessed at www.iusstf.org