Commission supports crucial research on convalescent plasma to treat the coronavirus

©European Union, 2020, Source: EC - Audiovisual Service©European Union, 2020, Source: EC - Audiovisual Service

The Commission announced today that it will support with €4 million a new research project, SUPPORT-E, that will coordinate efforts to determine if COVID-19 convalescent plasma transfusion – using plasma from patients who recovered from the disease – is an effective and safe treatment. The funding is part of the Commission’s €1 billion pledge for coronavirus research and innovation, which comes under Horizon 2020 and is directed towards the development of vaccines, new treatments and diagnostic tools to prevent the spread of the virus. Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth said: “Using plasma from patients that have recovered from COVID-19 and developed an immune response is a very promising avenue for treating the disease, but we need more evidence about its efficacy and safety. The Commission is playing an important role by supporting international efforts to enhance evidence and assess the potential of this therapy as well as to ensure it has no serious adverse effects.” SUPPORT-E is led by the European Blood Alliance (EBA) and brings together 12 major research establishments and clinical centres with world-class research capabilities from six EU Member States, as well as Switzerland and the UK. It will coordinate and enable clinical studies on convalescent plasma transfusions performed across Europe. This will help not only determine safety and efficacy, but also to better understand which patients should be transfused and how, as well as how the donations should be tested and selected to guarantee the best treatment outcome. The project adds to the portfolio of EU-funded research and innovation actions and complements the public health policy and activities that the Commission is coordinating with the Member States. More information is available here