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School facility to provide essential proteins for coronavirus research

Edinburgh Protein Production Facility (EPPF) have joined a national consortium to provide medically important proteins that will aid coronavirus research.

EPPF staff image
EPPF core staff (left to right); Dr. Jacqueline Dornan, Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn, Dr. Matthew Nowicki, Dr. Martin Wear, Dr. Iain McNae.

The COVID-19 Protein Production Consortium (CPPC) will provide UK scientists with quick access to proteins that support research into COVID-19 therapeutics, vaccines and diagnostics.

Protein reagents are crucial to understanding the fundamental biology of the virus, but can be challenging and time consuming to produce, especially under restricted working conditions.

The reagents will be provided free of charge by one of ten leading UK protein engineering and production laboratories, in an initiative led by Wellcome and UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).

The CPPC will provide access to protein reagents through a dedicated website - known as the COVID-19 Protein Portal.

The portal contains a searchable database of reagents - including viral proteins, human proteins and antibodies relevant to coronavirus.

EPPF will produce a range of proteins that are made by the SARS-CoV-2 virus as well as other serological reagents that will be used in drug and vaccine development against COVID-19.

Recipient labs will provide feedback to the consortium on their COVID-19 research results, and share important outcomes with the wider scientific community. 

By coordinating of research efforts across the UK, the consortium will accelerate vital research to deliver effective clinical management of COVID-19.

The consortium also includes Diamond Light Source, the Francis Crick Institute, the MRC, the Rosalind Franklin Institute, STRUBI, Structural Genomics Consortium, University of Bristol and the University of Glasgow with logistical support from INSTRUCT-ERIC.

Researchers around the world are working at an unprecedented pace to deepen our understanding of COVID-19 and develop vaccines, treatments and tests against it. By collaborating across borders and openly sharing research and resources, we can learn more about the virus and help to bring this pandemic to an end

Dr Michael DunnWellcome’s Head of Genetics and Molecular Science

Edinburgh Protein Production Facility (EPPF)

EPPF has built an international reputation in producing and characterising a range of medically important proteins. The facility, located in the School of Biological Sciences, is managed by Dr Martin Wear who leads a team of four experienced protein biochemists. It has a reputation as a centre of excellence for protein production and is one of the best centralised, high-value equipment facilities in Europe.

I am delighted that the School of Biological Sciences is playing such an important role in the COVID-19 response and I give my full support to Martin and the EPPF team in their efforts

Professor David GrayHead of the School of Biological Sciences

Related Links

Edinburgh Protein Production Facility

COVID-19 Protein Portal website

Wellcome & UKRI Press Release