COG-UK Research Project Fund

Expanding the COG-UK research portfolio to increase impact from genome data

COG-UK consortium members have made major contributions to the pandemic response through the generation of SARS-CoV-2 genomes, the development of sequencing methods and tools that interpret the genomes, data linkage and analysis. But there is a wealth of research and development still to do before the benefits from these data are fully realised. Here, we describe a new initiative that begins to address this need.

COG-UK is enhancing its research portfolio by awarding up to £40,000 to 14 of its consortium partners. This funding comes from the original award that created COG-UK on 1st April 2020, and is now available because of cost-savings made through improvements in logistics and sequencing methods pioneered by consortium members during the pandemic. The 14 institutions include 12 universities across the UK and two Public Health Agencies. Research is focused on variants, data linkage and quality, and planning for future pandemics.

This broad range of applied research will help COG-UK’s genome data yield even greater benefits to the COVID-19 response in the UK and beyond.

SARS-CoV-2 variants

Six complementary projects focus on the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants.

Targeting treatments

Several projects will link complex datasets with a view to therapeutics for SARS-CoV-2 or the next pandemic.

Genome quality control

In laboratories just beginning SARS-CoV-2 genome sequencing, tools to support QC could have considerable utility.

Integration with metadata

Several projects will improve linkage and integration of genomes with metadata to enhance the pandemic response.