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Illustration of COVID cells.

During FY2021, University researchers received 120 sponsored research awards related to COVID-19 totaling $256 million. This included $189.8 million for Coordinating Centers for Biometric Research (CCBR), which was able to quickly and nimbly meet the needs of agencies like the National Institutes of Health (via the Leidos Corporation) to test possible COVID-19 treatments in clinical trials across the nation and the globe. CCBR, in the School of Public Health, has built a decades-long international reputation for creating high-quality clinical trials that have had major impacts in treating HIV, influenza, Ebola, and many other conditions.Other faculty in the School of Public Health assisted with time-sensitive research crucial to policy and practice during this difficult period. Many other researchers from across the University system altered plans and adapted to the new environment.

Physicians in the University’s Medical School also conducted local trials on a variety of potential COVID-19 therapeutics, and researchers across the University were awarded sponsored funds to conduct research into: racial, gender, and class disparities during the pandemic;the effect of the pandemic on regional food systems; international contact tracing; novel antibodies from llamas to treat COVID-19; how COVID-19 therapeutics were allocated in Minnesota; and how telecommuting might affect Minnesota’s transportation system, among many other topics.

Featured as part of the Vice President for Research's FY2021 annual report to the Board of Regents.