Ce topic appartient à l'appel Tackling diseases (Single stage - 2024)
Identifiant du topic: HORIZON-HLTH-2024-DISEASE-08-20

Pandemic preparedness and response: Host-pathogen interactions of infectious diseases with epidemic potential

Type d'action : HORIZON Research and Innovation Actions
Nombre d'étapes : Single stage
Date d'ouverture : 26 octobre 2023
Date de clôture : 11 avril 2024 17:00
Budget : €50 000 000
Call : Tackling diseases (Single stage - 2024)
Call Identifier : HORIZON-HLTH-2024-DISEASE-08
Description :


This topic aims at supporting activities that are enabling or contributing to one or several expected impacts of destination 3 “Tackling diseases and reducing disease burden”. To that end, proposals under this topic should aim for delivering results that are directed, tailored towards and contributing to all of the following expected outcomes:

  • The scientific and clinical communities have an increased knowledge on viruses with epidemic potential and in particular a better understanding of pathogen–host interactions for the targeted development of vaccines and inhibitors for the prevention of viral infection and the viral transmission during pathogenesis.
  • The scientific and clinical communities have access to novel approaches for the prevention and treatment for emerging and re-emerging infections in the context of epidemic and pandemic preparedness.
  • The scientific and clinical communities have access to experimental vaccine candidates and candidates that inhibit cellular uptake of viruses against emerging or re-emerging viral infections for further clinical investigation.

A diverse and robust development pipeline of vaccine candidates and candidates that inhibit cellular uptake of viruses is available to fight emerging and re-emerging viral infections, increasing therapeutic options for clinical deployment in case of an epidemic or pandemic.


As shown by the COVID-19 pandemic, infectious diseases remain a major threat to health and health security in the EU and globally. Viral disease emergence is expected to accelerate due to among other factors, climate change, and thus a proactive approach to the development of vaccines and inhibitors for the cellular uptake of viruses in preparedness for future infectious disease outbreaks is needed. The availability of vaccines and candidates that inhibit cellular uptake of viruses would provide a critical preparedness measure against future health threats, in particular against pathogens with high pandemic potential meeting the criteria identified by the Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA)[1].

Proposals should follow innovative approaches to characterise host-pathogen interactions with a view to inhibit viral replication, viral proteases, viral exit strategies and to develop therapeutic antibodies and vaccines that target viruses with high epidemic or pandemic potential for the EU. Proposals should focus on the following viruses: Hendra and Nipah virus, Lassa virus, Crimean Congo haemorrhagic fever virus, Rift Valley fever virus, Ebola and Marburg virus, Dengue virus, Yellow Fever virus, Zika virus, West Nile fever virus and Chikungunya virus. Proposal should take into account sex and gender aspects.

Proposals should aim to diversify and accelerate the global therapeutic research and development pipeline for emerging and re-emerging viral infections, and to strengthen the current leading role of the EU in therapeutic research and development, and therefore contributing to the work of the European Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA).

Proposals should address several of the following areas:

  • Identification and characterisation of receptors on the host cell that enable the docking and internalisation of a virus with a particular emphasis on the diversity of cellular entry receptors and tissue specificity.
  • Identification and characterisation of viral surface proteins that are capable of interacting with host target cells.
  • Characterisation of the mechanism of viral uptake in the host cell with regard to the topology and the dynamics of the host receptor – virus ligand interaction.
  • Identification of receptor and ligand (sub)units that could be targeted by preventive or therapeutic intervention.

Proposals could consider the inclusion of the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) research infrastructure (Nanobiotechnology laboratory) for biophysical characterisation of recombinant proteins, antigens and therapeutic antibodies, and its expertise at the interface between the research activities and regulatory aspects. In that respect, the JRC will consider collaborating with any successful proposal and this collaboration, when relevant, should be established after the proposal’s approval.

Applicants envisaging to include clinical studies should provide details of their clinical studies in the dedicated annex using the template provided in the submission system. See definition of clinical studies in the introduction to this work programme part.