Ten Maltese cancer research teams have applied to tap a €2.5 million grant being offered by the Emanuele Cancer Research Foundation Malta over five years.
These applications are being reviewed by an international board of experts and the outcome of the results is expected to be announced on May 15.
The grant is intended to support University of Malta academics with their research into the causes, mechanisms, diagnosis, treatment or prevention of cancer, as well as enabling a better quality of life for cancer patients.
The amount offered is an unparalleled opportunity, since over the past eight years cancer research has received just under €1m, while academics can now tap into half a million each year.
The funding will also provide researchers with a giant leap forward and position Malta on the map of cancer research, while attracting collaborators from the major laboratories across the globe.
The call for applications had been made last November, and came just months after another €2.5 million was invested in state-of-the-art cancer research equipment by the Foundation, which is a tripartite collaboration between the Malta Trust Foundation headed by Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, University of Malta rector Alfred Vella, and the Fondazione Terzo Pilastro Internazionale in Rome.
The equipment is being used by university researchers and will be invaluable for the new research teams who will be awarded grants.
The review board members come from institutions, which the Emanuele Cancer Research Foundation Malta collaborates with, namely: MEBIC, based at San Raffaele Hospital, Rome; the University of Palermo; the Sharett Institute of Oncology – Centre for Malignant Breast Diseases, Israel; the Shanghai Dongfang Hospital, China, and the Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown in Portugal.