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COVID-19 Research in Scotland

Working with partners across UK, Scotland led, enabled and delivered world-class COVID-19 research, a key element of the Government’s overall response to the pandemic. This included

  • ISARIC: Understanding behaviour and spread of COVID-19 in the UK – led by Dr Kenneth Baillie, University of Edinburgh, which collected samples and data from COVID-19 patients in the UK to answer urgent questions about the virus in real-time 
  • RECOVERY: Re-purposing existing and new drugs for COVID-19 patients – the Scottish Government provided £3.3 million to fund governance and support for this trial, which tested if existing or new drugs could help patients hospitalised with confirmed COVID-19 
  • GenOMICC: Finding the genes that cause susceptibility to COVID-19 – aimed to recruit critically-ill patients with COVID-19, TO find the genes that cause susceptibility to help prioritise treatments to respond to the global crisis 
  • REMAP-CAP: Reducing mortality, ICU use, morbidity in patients with COVID-19 – an international platform trial that was specifically designed for a pandemic period, with the aim to generate evidence that could be applied during the pandemic to reduce mortality, reduce intensive care use, and reduce morbidity in severely ill patients with COVID-19 infection 
  • SIREN (Sarscov2 Immunity & REinfection EvaluatioN) – a UK-wide study testing 100,000 health workers, providing information on immunity from and prevalence of COVID-19 infection; the Scottish arm of SIREN is being co-ordinated by Professor Lesley Price and Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU), in partnership with Public Health Scotland, NHS Research Scotland and the Chief Scientist Office (CSO) of the Scottish Government, and aimed to recruit 10,000 staff across Scotland 

The Chief Scientist Office of Scottish Government  also launched dedicated funding calls to increase the understanding of coronavirus (COVID-19), screen potential treatments and support clinical trials. 

One hundred and thirty-nine proposals were received from across Scotland’s universities and research institutes. Following an independent expert review process, 56 projects were selected for funding, establishing a pan-Scotland portfolio of high-quality research on COVID-19 that delivered rapidly and informed policy and clinical practice in responding to the pandemic. 

Chief Scientist Office infographic showing key highlights from the Rapid Research in COVID-19 Programme. All information can be accessed in the below link.

Final reports for the Rapid Research in COVID-19 Programme are available to view on the CSO website. 

Research into COVID-19 treatment and care continues. Members of the public can search for current trials taking place by using Be Part of Research.