Applications have opened for scientists wanting a slice of funding allocated to research the deadly Hendra virus.
Scientists have much to learn about the deadly bat-borne virus endemic to Queensland and New South Wales which is capable of infecting horses, and then humans.
A case this week in Queensland added to the worst Hendra season on record in Australia since the virus was first isolated in 1994.
The National Hendra Virus Research Programme is seeking preliminary research proposals aligned with priority outcomes.
Areas of particular interest include:
- Capacity to predict periods of high risk for Hendra virus transmission from flying fox bats to horses - understanding Hendra virus ecology and modelling Hendra virus risk.
- Improved strategies to prevent transmission of Hendra virus from flying foxes to horses, from horses to humans, from horses to horses, and potentially to other susceptible species. Research areas could include: horse-flying fox interactions, horse and property management, factors influencing risk awareness and adoption of risk mitigation strategies.
- Capacity to detect and respond effectively to Hendra virus incidents in horses, humans and potentially other susceptible species.
Successful applicants will be invited to present their proposals at a Hendra Virus Science Congress in Brisbane early in December.
The Hendra Virus Science Congress will provide applicants with the opportunity to refine key research questions and explore collaborative opportunities.
Following the Hendra Virus Science Congress, successful applicants will be invited to submit full research proposals that will be considered for funding.