Research as a tool to protect us from coronavirus


The appearance of the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 represents a great threat to public health worldwide, and has recently been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Funded thanks to:
  • Donors
  • Total raised
    • Worldcoo clients 165.216€
  • Direct beneficiaries 10.000

    Those people who have naturally benefited from the project's interventions.

  • Indirect beneficiaries 60.000

    Those identifiable people who will potentially recieve an effect from the project's activities.



  • Staff 170.000€
  • Total 170.000€


Coronaviruses (CoV) are a wide family of viruses that can cause a variety of conditions, from the common cold to more serious illnesses such as pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death. There is currently an outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that was first reported in Wuhan, China on December 31, 2019.

The quick spread of infection and the increasing number of deaths highlight the need to search for vaccines and antiviral medicines to control the new disease. However, the design of these products requires in-depth analysis of virus weaknesses and the possibility of testing the efficacy and safety of medicines and vaccines generated in appropriate animal models.

The project brings together three research centers that propose an innovative procedure that will examine thousands of antibodies and viral protein variants using the best supercomputing tools available at the Barcelona Supercomputing Center. The AIDS Research Institute IrsiCaixa will use these data to design and develop antibodies and vaccines against coronavirus, and the products generated will be tested with infection models available from IRTA-CReSA.

The combination of experience in these scientific fields will accelerate the development of antivirals, antibodies, and vaccines to combat the new virus and other new coronavirus threats as well. The project has the collaboration of the pharmaceutical company Grifols.


  • Construct an effective computational strategy for the analysis of viral sequences and structures.
  • Generate antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein.
  • Design vaccines based on the Spike protein using the IrsiCaixa vaccine platform.
  • Design rapid tests to select the best antiviral products.
  • Develop infection animal models of SARS-CoV-2.
  • Validate the best candidates for antivirals and vaccines in the selected animal models.

Project objectives

Develop vaccines, antibodies and drugs to combat the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and protect ourselves against new Coronavirus.

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