Notice of Information on High-Priority Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) Research Areas

Notice Number: NOT-AI-13-065

Key Dates
Release Date: September 20, 2013

Related Announcements

Issued by
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)


NIAID is issuing this Notice to highlight its interest in receiving grant applications focused on Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) research. Areas of high priority include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Basic research to understand MERS-CoV infection, replication, pathogenesis, and transmission.
  • Studies on the evolution and emergence of MERS CoV viruses including the identification of factors that affect MERS CoV host-range and virulence;
  • Virologic and serologic surveillance studies of the distribution and natural history of MERS-CoV viruses in animal populations and in humans at the human/animal interface, with particular emphasis on hosts(s) reservoirs and understanding cross-species transmission events;
  • The development of sensitive, specific, and rapid clinical diagnostic tests for MERS CoV;
  • Development of drugs against MERS CoV and broad spectrum therapeutics against multiple coronavirus strains, including structure/function studies of MERS CoV proteins with the goal of identifying new therapeutic targets;
  • Evaluation of the immune response to infection and/or vaccination including cell-mediated and innate immunity;
  • The development of novel MERS CoV vaccines and vaccination strategies based on evolving knowledge of host/pathogen interactions and identification of relevant biomarkers.

Possible funding opportunities that can be used to pursue these research activities include:

For other NIAID funding opportunities that may become available in the coming months, please visit the NIAID Funding Opportunities website:

Please note that investigators interested in pursuing clinical research on MERS-CoV should review NIAID’s policy regarding Investigator-Initiated Clinical Trials at the following website:  Clinical research activities will not be supported under the funding opportunities noted above.


Please direct all inquiries to:

Erik J. Stemmy, Ph.D.
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Telephone: 240-627-3380