Professor Wouter Roos is partner in a research consortium that has been awarded a European Innovation Council (EIC) Pathfinder grant within the Horizon Europe programme. The project called VIRUSong will receive EUR 5.5 million. The consortium consists of partners from France, Spain, Germany and the Netherlands. The Université de Lyon is coordinator. EIC Pathfinder grants are intended to support research teams in investigating or developing an emerging breakthrough technology.
In the VIRUSong project, researchers will study tiny vibrations of viruses in order to develop diagnostic tools. By benchmarking the material properties of viral nanoparticles using atomic force microscopy (AFM), mechanic insights can be coupled to vibrational spectra of the particles. Wouter Roos, researcher at the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials (ZIAM), receives EUR 950,000 for his part of the project. Within his research group, a PhD student and a postdoc will start on performing the AFM nanoindentation experiments. The obtained new insights are expected to boost viral recognition technology and to provide a platform for fast and efficient characterisation of disease causing viruses such as SARS-CoV-2.
With the Pathfinder programme, the European Innovation Council supports the exploration of bold ideas for radically new technologies. The grants are for advanced research, with a focus on scientific collaborations that support technological breakthroughs. EIC Pathfinder is the first instrument within the Horizon Europe programme of the European Union.
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