Congratulations and best of luck to our University of Montana Center for Translational Medicine research team.

It was announced today (Thursday) that they have been awarded $2.5 million in funding from the National Institutes of Health to identify and advance a COVID-19 vaccine candidate. The principal investigator on the two-year award is Dr. Jay Evans, the center director and a research professor in UM’s Division of Biological Sciences.

According to Dr. Evans, "“When the call came from NIH in February to shift focus and develop a vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, we quickly adjusted lower priority vaccine projects to focus our efforts on this urgent need.” Our dedicated team of experienced researchers stepped up in the face of school closures, stay-at-home orders and social distancing to rapidly advance this vaccine and continue working on other essential research projects of critical importance to our community and the nation.”

UM has a world-class vaccine discovery and development team actively working on new or improved vaccines, including for influenza virus, tuberculosis, pertussis (whooping cough), Lyme disease, E. coli and opioid addiction.

Our thanks to University Relations for letting us help share the news.