ISIDORe offers services for infectious disease research
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed not just society, but also research. The pandemic showed clearly the importance of data sharing and collaboration in accelerating research. This is not least because cutting-edge research often necessitates access to specific resources that may not be available in every research institute, nor even in every country.
The ISIDORe project aims to accelerate research and enhance pandemic preparedness efforts across Europe by assembling and providing access to crucial research resources. The project gives scientists access to their state-of-the-art facilities, services, advanced equipment, and expertise in an integrated manner. The project is coordinated by The European Research Infrastructure on Highly Pathogenic Agents (ERINHA) and collates resources from 17 major European life science research infrastructures and infectious diseases networks. The project brings together 154 research entities and organisations to advance research on pathogens with epidemic potential. Researchers from all over Europe can apply for access to ISIDORe’s services in open calls. There are currently calls related to respiratory pathogens, vector borne pathogens and their vectors, and other pathogens with epidemic potential. These calls may be of interest to the Swedish pandemic preparedness research community and, as such, we list them on our funding opportunities page.
Multiple Swedish researchers and groups have successfully applied for access to ISIDORe’s services. One example is an interdisciplinary team of four research groups at Uppsala University with expertise in computer-aided drug design (Jens Carlsson), enzymology and antiviral drug discovery (Helena Danielson), and medicinal chemistry (Anja Sandström and Lindon Moodie). Their research aims to idnetify a broad-spectrum antiviral that may be suitable for the treatment of coronavirus infections. The development of treatments, including with antiviral agents such as those at the centre of this research effort, was shown to be incredibly important during the COVID-19 pandemic. The research team has collaborated since the early days of the pandemic and have optimised several novel and potent SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro) inhibitors, which have shown promising in vitro and in vivo pharmacokinetic profiles. Access to ISIDORe’s services has been important in enabling the team to identify the most promising inhibitors, and to develop broad-spectrum antivirals targetting coronaviruses.
The team at Uppsala University have multiple recent publications based on their work using the ISIDORe resources. One example is Luttens et al. (2022), which focuses on the use of virtual screening to identify protease inhibitors with broad spectrum activity against coronaviruses. Some of the team will also be taking part in an event by the SciLifeLab Drug Discovery and Development Platform on 7th November 2023. Check these out to learn more about their work!