Australia, India to collaborate on COVID-19 research

Image Credit: Australian Government | Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources

Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews has announced funding boost for six new projects under the Australia-India Strategic Research Fund (AISRF), one of which will focus on developing COVID-19 diagnostic technologies.

The project, which received nearly $4 million in funding from the Federal Government, will see Australian and Indian researchers work together to advance COVID-19 screening and study the future health effects of the virus.

Another project will study the longer-term effects on the hearts and lungs of patients who have recovered from COVID-19.

Other projects supported under the AISRF will develop risk management systems to protect farmers from disasters associated with climate change and demonstrate how food-drying technology using renewable energy can reduce pollution in the food-processing sector.

The Australian recipients are the University of South Australia, the University of Southern Queensland, the University of Technology Sydney, the Metro North Hospital and Health Service in Brisbane, the University of Adelaide, and the University of Western Australia.

Minister Andrews said the AISRF – Australia’s largest fund dedicated to bilateral science collaboration – was established to helps build links between Australia and India’s top universities, research institutions and the end users of scientific innovation.

“As a result of our shared commitment to finding answers through science and technology, India and Australia have tackled a number of shared challenges since the AISRF was established in 2006, with important progress made in areas including agriculture, energy and health,” the Minister said.

“This latest funding will enable Australian and Indian researchers to contribute to the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including in crucial screening and diagnostic testing.

“The Australian Government remains committed to our strong, strategic relationship with India, which provides numerous economic benefits for both countries,” Ms Andrews concluded.

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