EpiCARE Research Council

The role of the ERN EpiCARE Research Council is to support research conducted by EpiCARE members, with an aim to improve the quality and quantity of research within the network. 

Specific goals include:

  • stimulating multi centre studies,
  • optimizing ethical, methodological, and statistical approaches
  • improving and optimizing trial feasibility and reliability.

The EpiCARE Research Council includes EpiCARE’s Coordinator, 4 members of the EpiCARE Steering comittee, the ECET Chair, the Registry representative, the ePAG representatives, a representative of a current joint ERN/European research Initiatives (eg EJP RD, Human Brain Project that provide ressources to the network), the EpiCARE Research projects manager, the EpiCARE data manager and an ILAE representative.

The chair of EpiCARE’s Research Council is Helen Cross, deputy chair is Kees Braun. Members are Alexis Arzimanoglou, Sandor Beniczky, Ingmar Blümcke, Philippe Ryvlin, Renzo Guerrini, Rainer Surges, Eugen Trinka, Lieven Lagae, Rima Nabbout and Emilio Perucca.

EpiCARE project

An EpiCARE project will be defined as a project that is led by a number of EpiCARE members  (at least 2) or from a single centre where data for a study is gathered from other EpiCARE HCP. 
The project must be proposed to the research council prior to any funding application, and have undergone a quality check/peer review.

EpiCARE support

In order for ERN EpiCARE support to be given to a project, a project should be reviewed by the council. On submission, a reviewer will be nominated from the network and advice provided within 2 weeks.  A letter will be provided by the Council Chair

Epicare Lyon 2020-01

On this page, we will share recent calls that could be of interest.
If you plan to work on one of this calls, please inform the Research Council liaison, Nicola. or Sébile.

Ongoing research calls

Transformational Science Grant Awards are the largest grants awarded by DSF. Transformational Science Grants are intended for established, experienced, independent investigators affiliated with a research or academic institution whose proposed projects investigate hypotheses directly related to Dravet syndrome. Transformational Science Grants should have substantial preliminary data to support the stated hypothesis and strong potential to significantly impact the research field or move the needle on clinical care. Proposals are scored according to NIH guidelines based on the quality of preliminary data, research design, feasibility, investigator’s qualifications, and overall impact. Grants are awarded for $500,000 over 3 years (beginning January 1 of each year). Indirect costs must be included within the $500,00 budget and are not to exceed 10% of the total award.

Investigators applying for a DSF grant should ensure their proposed project addresses the needs of the Dravet syndrome community and DSF’s mission to support research toward better treatments and a cure for Dravet syndrome. Proposals should address research areas related to the DSF’s yearly priority areas and DSF’s Roadmap to a Cure.

Eligibility: Applicants should be affiliated with a research or academic institution (excluding for-profit companies), may be US or foreign based, established in their field, and in good standing with their institution.



  • maximum financial contribution from IHI is up to EUR 30 000 000.
  • IHI estimates that an IHI financial contribution of between EUR 12 000 000 and EUR 15 000 000

Deadline : One stage : Mid January 2024


Animals and animal-derived materials are widely used in biomedical research and in the production and development of health technologies. This raises serious ethical concerns, and there is growing societal pressure to move towards alternative approaches and methods. Besides major ethical concerns, there is also scientific evidence that supports moving away from animal-based approaches and finding more humanrelevant methods and strategies for both the assessment of safety and efficacy of new health technologies and for manufacturing. Animal testing requires time-consuming protocols, high costs for animal supply, and the results are not always reproducible and applicable to humans. In addition, for the development and production of health technologies (e.g., in vitro diagnostics) as well as in biomedical research in general, materials of animal origin are required (e.g., biomolecules, sera). These animal-derived products require large amounts of animals for their production. Therefore, also in this context, there is a need to foster progress towards new alternatives (e.g., synthetic matrix, recombinant proteins) to reduce the overall number of animals that are bred for these purposes.

New Approach Methodologies (NAMs) and other innovative non-animal approaches have high potential to improve the development and/or the production of health technologies, while contributing to the reduction and replacement of the use of animals. Recent improved biological knowledge, technological advances, computer simulations and innovative non-animal approaches and methods (e.g., organoids, complex 3D cell models, microphysiological systems4, in silico models, non-animal derived antibodies and other biomolecules5) provide the opportunity to move forward with safer and more effective tools for protecting human health and preventing/treating diseases that would in parallel entail an improvement of animal to human translation or better production processes, as well as help progress towards the replacement of animals used in biomedical research in general.

While the potential for using non-animal approaches for the production, development and testing of new health technologies is enormous, more evidence and high-quality data for their performance evaluation in comparison with established animal-based approaches for a specific application (such as a production process, primary pharmacology, or next-generation-risk-assessment – NGRA) and for their validation are required by the industry and regulators to implement these alternative approaches in R&D and decision

The current topic seeks to address these challenges by exploiting the latest relevant scientific advancements to develop NAMs and other non-animal approaches, which could be more readily available and more efficient than the ones involving animals, and which should improve either the development, including efficacy and safety assessment, of new health technologies for infectious/non-communicable diseases or the production processes of such technologies. The projects funded under this topic should aim to:

  • Develop new NAM/s or other non-animal approach/es (or a combination of those) or use existing ones in an innovative way to improve animal to human translation in (early stage) assessment of new health technologies or to improve production processes of health technologies (such as bio/pharmaceuticals, vaccines, medical devices including in vitro diagnostics, and radio-chemicals).
  • Specify the context of use (e.g., primary pharmacology, toxicology, safety, quality control, production processes) of the novel approach/es, how it/they can be integrated efficiently in the relevant workflows and propose and implement a plan to carry out their performance evaluation and validation, as well as demonstrate their added value in comparison with relevant established animal-based approaches.
  • Make a comparative evaluation of the different approaches to replace, reduce and refine animal use, including the identification and assessment of parameters that influence their usefulness.
  • Generate evidence on the robustness, reliability, and applicability of these novel approaches in an industrial R&D context and to support regulatory decision making in testing, development or production of health technologies, as relevant. Accordingly, applicants should develop a strategy/plan for generating appropriate evidence to support regulatory acceptance as well as engage with regulators in a timely manner (e.g., through the EMA Innovation Task Force, qualification advice).
  • Gather and produce high quality datasets to generate a solid knowledge base for supporting the use of NAMs and other non-animal approaches in the field of health technology and drive 3Rs implementation. To ensure sustainability of the results and foster future development and validation of innovative nonanimal approaches, applicants should develop a fit-for-purpose scalable digital data repository. Applicants should consider and leverage as much as possible existing infrastructures.
  • Establish a collaboration platform between all relevant stakeholders from public and private sides, including regulatory agencies and policy makers, to exchange information, prepare white papers and guidelines to foster uptake or translation into health policies supporting an adequately reflected transition to full implementation of non-animal approaches in health technology development and manufacturing. Patients and/or patient organisations may be included and actively contribute to such activities by providing, for example, their insight on the use of human-derived samples, as relevant.
  • Accelerate the broad implementation of the NAMs and other non-animal approaches in research through a strong communication and dissemination plan, fostering also exchanges and cross fertilization with other projects funded in this area.


  • maximum financial contribution from IHI is up to EUR 25 000 000.
  • IHI estimates that an IHI financial contribution of between EUR 10 000 000 and EUR 12 000 000

Deadline : One stage : Mid January 2024


Multi-modal theranostics solutions, currently dominated by radionuclide-based therapy and companion diagnostics are emerging as safe, personalised, and effective approaches for the treatment of several diseases. However, use of such therapies is limited to a few specialised centres with the need to increase clinical treatment capacities, and to widen the arsenal of theranostics, possibly including novel non-nuclear approaches, e.g., enabled by nanotechnologies. To address this challenge, project(s) funded under this topic should aim at developing new, or innovative combinations of existing, multi-modal theranostics solutions including radiopharmaceuticals and/or nonradioactive theranostics solutions. Applicants should clearly identify a disease(s) of unmet public health need, (e.g., oncology, neurology and/or advanced multi-disease conditions) and explain their choice with relevant evidence where possible.

In particular, for the selected disease(s), the project(s) funded under this topic are expected to address all the following objectives:

  • Develop innovative theranostics solutions and consider conducting proof of concept clinical trials to demonstrate the added value of the proposed theranostics solutions for patients.
  • Develop tools for the quantification of the chosen disease(s) through development of novel modalities to ensure proper planning and monitoring of patients care, which may include imaging, artificial intelligence and pathology models.
  • Facilitate the development of tools to increase European theranostics manufacturing capabilities and treatment capacities, including guidance on quality assurance and improving logistics of supply at the EU level.
  • Develop education & training materials on the deployment of multi-modal theranostics solutions and their integration in clinical settings including re


  • maximum financial contribution from IHI is up to EUR 20 000 000.
  • IHI estimates that an IHI financial contribution of around EUR 10 000 000

Deadline : One stage : Mid January 2024



Healthcare research using individual patient data is often constrained due to restrictions in data access because of privacy, security, intellectual property (IP) and other concerns. Synthetic health data, i.e., data that is artificially created to mimic individual patient data, can reduce these concerns, leading to more rapid development of reliable data-driven methods including diagnostic, precision medicine, decision support and patient monitoring tools. However, while many synthetic data generation (SDG) methods are currently available, it is not always clear which method is best for which use case, and SDG methods for some types of data are still immature.

Expected impacts to be achieved by this topic

 To exploit the full potential of digitalisation and data exchange in health care, this topic is expected to contribute to the following expected impacts:

  • Wider availability of interoperable, synthetic data facilitating research and the development of integrated products and services to benefit patients.
  • Improved insight into real-life behaviour and challenges of patients with complex, chronic diseases and co-morbidities thanks to m-health and e-health technologies.
  • Advanced analytics/artificial intelligence tools supporting health research and innovation resulting in a) better clinical decision support for increased accuracy of diagnosis and efficacy of treatment, b) faster prototyping and shorter times to market of personalised health interventions, c) better evidence of the added value from new digital health and AI tools, including reduced risk of bias due to improved methodologies.

Expected outcomes

  • Academic and industrial researchers have a better understanding of the applicability and suitability of different synthetic data generation methods in specific use cases.
  • Academic and industrial researchers have better tools, including open access when relevant, to create and share pools of synthetic patient data for research.
  • Academic and industrial researchers have access to relevant, high quality synthetic datasets.
  • Thanks to better availability of robust synthetic data sets for training data models, healthcare providers and industry have a wider range of performant AI-based and other data-driven tools to support diagnostics, personalized treatment decision-making and prediction of health outcomes

Deadline model : single-stage

Planned opening date: 10 October 2023

Deadline date: 08 February 2024 17:00:00 Brussels time


Projects results are expected to contribute to the following outcomes:

For supported doctoral candidates or postdoctoral researchers

  • Deeper and more diverse set of research-related and transferable skills and competences;
  • Improved employability and career prospects both within academia and beyond;
  • New mind-sets and approaches to R&I work forged through international, inter-sectoral and interdisciplinary experience;
  • Enhanced networking and communication capacities with scientific peers, as well as with the general public that will increase and broaden the research and innovation impact.

For participating organisations

  • Enhanced quality and sustainability of research training;
  • Increased global attractiveness, visibility and reputation of the participating organisation(s);
  • Stronger R&I capacity and output among participating organisations;
  • Increased contribution of the participating organisations to the local, regional and/or national socio-economic ecosystems;
  • Regular feedback of research results into teaching and education at participating organisations.


Applicants submit proposals for new or existing doctoral or postdoctoral programmes with an impact on the enhancement of human resources in R&I at regional, national or international level. These programmes will be co-funded by MSCA COFUND.

Proposed programmes can cover any research disciplines (“bottom-up”), but exceptionally can also focus on specific disciplines, notably when they are based on national or regional Research and Innovation Strategies for Smart Specialisation (RIS3 strategies). In this case, the range of covered disciplines should allow reasonable flexibility for the researchers to define their topic.

COFUND takes the form of:

  1. A) Doctoral programmes

Doctoral programmes offer research training activities to allow doctoral candidates to develop and broaden their skills and competences. They will lead to the award of a doctoral degree in at least one EU Member State or Horizon Europe Associated Country. The training activities should be based on the EU Principles on Innovative Doctoral Training.

  1. B) Postdoctoral Programmes

Postdoctoral Programmes fund individual advanced research training and career development fellowships for postdoctoral researchers. The programmes should offer training to develop key transferable skills and competences common to all fields, foster good scientific conduct such as research integrity, foster innovation and entrepreneurship and promote and (where appropriate) reward Open Science practices (open access to publications and to other research outputs including data, FAIR data management, societal engagement and citizen science, etc.).

Deadline model: single-stage

Planned opening date: 06 December 2023

Deadline date: 12 March 2024 17:00:00 Brussels time


Projects are expected to contribute to all the following expected outcomes:

  • support to planning and decision making for research infrastructures at the national (e.g. funding bodies, governments) and European level (e.g. ESFRI) through solid science cases, including expected scientific breakthrough, gap analyses and feasibility/design studies for future research infrastructures or major upgrades of existing ones;
  • a better alignment of the development of the research infrastructure landscape with the advancements of excellent science, frontier research and technology innovation;
  • increased performance, scientific capacity and excellence of the European research infrastructure landscape;
  • new services and access opportunities available to the research community, allowing to better tackle scientific and societal challenges;
  • reduction of environmental (including climate-related) impacts as well as optimisation of resource and energy consumption integrated in the very early phase of development of new research infrastructures or major upgrades of existing ones.


This topic aims at supporting the development of new concepts for the next generation of research infrastructures of European interest[1], single/multi sited, distributed or virtual, that none or few countries might individually be able to implement. All fields of research can be considered.

Major upgrades of existing infrastructures may also be considered if the end result is significantly transformative and equivalent to a new infrastructure concept. The possibility to extend the scope of already existing infrastructures and/or integrate in a sustainable way existing pan-European and national capacities to address the specific RI service needs, should indeed be assessed as a first option, identifying what is missing and the necessary new developments.

Proposals for RI concept development will tackle all key questions concerning the technical and conceptual feasibility of new or upgraded fully fledged user facilities.

In this respect, proposals should address all following aspects:

  • demonstrate relevance in relation to ERA, including to the existing landscape, and the expected advancement with respect to the state-of-art of the new or upgraded infrastructure;
  • highlight the research challenges the new or upgraded research infrastructures will make possible to address, including at global level;
  • indicate the gaps in the research infrastructure landscape the new or upgraded infrastructure will cover and the synergies with other existing infrastructures at European and global level, including those co-financed from other EU instruments (e.g.: Cohesion policy);
  • indicate, when relevant, the potential impact of the new research infrastructure at regional level.

Proposals should also convincingly demonstrate that the project will effectively:

  • identify technologies and the architecture (e.g. single site or distributed, …) for developing the research infrastructure;
  • identify scientific user communities (and their related needs) that will benefit from access to RI services, including scientific data and instrumentation, and develop the planning of research services to users;
  • identify governance options as well as strategic approaches for institutional/stakeholders’ commitment and engagement and for ensuring a wide membership;
  • develop initial financial plans for the implementation and operation of the new or upgraded RI as well as preliminary ideas for long-term sustainability, including synergies with other funds and programmes (e.g.: ERDF);
  • develop plans for an efficient data curation and preservation and for the provision of access to data collected or produced by the future infrastructure, in line with the FAIR principles.

Deadline model : single-stage

Planned opening date : 14 May 2024

Deadline date :04 September 2024 17:00:00 Brussels time

Expected Outcome:

Project results are expected to contribute to the following outcomes:

  • Broader and more strategic promotion of international cooperation opportunities offered through MSCA;
  • Monitoring progress, opportunities and challenges in MSCA bilateral and bi-regional cooperation with main international partner countries and regions;
  • Strengthening complementarities with other relevant promotion and cooperation initiatives funded through Horizon Europe or other EU programmes.


The objective is to foster international cooperation in MSCA in Horizon Europe, through a dedicated support action to complement and ensure coordination between existing promotion channels at local level, and ensure consistency with formal R&I policy dialogues at bilateral and regional levels. Focus should be given:

  • At bilateral level on countries having concluded bilateral Science and Technology Agreements with the EU (Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Egypt, India, Japan, Jordan, Korea, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, South Africa, Switzerland, Tunisia, Ukraine and the United States).
  • At regional level, on bi-regional research and innovation policy dialogues, established notably with the African Union, ASEAN, LAC, Mediterranean partner countries, Eastern Partnership countries and Western Balkans.

Based on the outcomes of a study[1] on the MSCA international dimension in Horizon 2020, activities to be implemented should include:

  • Policy support to bilateral/bi-regional cooperation: assessing main cooperation trends, opportunities and challenges related to local developments in the R&I/higher education domain; identifying possible gaps versus joint priorities and participation of prominent local stakeholders; reviewing existing cooperation mechanisms (info relays, training, co-funding schemes) relevance and efficiency for MSCA; identifying main existing or planned cooperation initiatives to build upon, as well as major local players, networks and associations to be prioritized; qualitative monitoring of the participation in the different MSCA calls; preparing background reports ahead of joint committee meetings and regional dialogues; providing contributions to newsletters and periodic reports from existing information relays, e.g. Euraxess Worldwide, EU Delegations.
  • Promotion of MSCA cooperation opportunities: identifying main local/bilateral or bi-regional events to target for MSCA promotion and opportunities for ad-hoc events co-located with bilateral/regional policy dialogues; liaising with local MSCA info relays, including local NCPs, Euraxess Worldwide offices, EU Delegations/S&T Counsellors, National Erasmus+ Offices, Enterprise Europe Network and other stakeholders/association representatives to identify coordinated promotion plans; organising MSCA promotion and training sessions (including through the physical participation of EU trainers when relevant); liaising with the EU NCP coordination platform to coordinate promotion activities with MSCA NCPs
  • Cross cutting activities: analysing consistency with EU R&I bilateral and bi-regional, cooperation roadmaps and action plans, people-to-people dialogues, synergies with promotion events and activities related to Horizon Europe, including ERC or COST and other EU programmes (in particular Erasmus+).

The expected duration of the action is 36 months.

The world’s largest brain research prize is Danish and is awarded by the Lundbeck Foundation. Each year, we award 10 million DKK (approx. 1,3 million€) to one or more brain researchers who have had a ground-breaking impact on brain research.

Nominations for 2023 are open

The Brain Prize recognises highly original and influential advances in any area of brain research, from basic neuroscience to applied clinical research, and winners may be of any nationality and work in any country around the globe. This broad perspective is reflected in the diverse fields of previous Brain Prize winners.

The Prize may be awarded to one or more scientists who have distinguished themselves through outstanding contributions to any field of neuroscience, from fundamental studies to research related to understanding and treatment of diseases of the brain and other parts of the nervous system.



The Global Innovation Fund (GIF) is currently inviting applications for its Grants program to support breakthrough solutions from for-profit firms, non-profit organisations, researchers, and government agencies to maximise their impact and catalyse meaningful change.

Deadline – Ongoing

The Global Innovation Fund invests in the development, rigorous testing, and scaling up of new products, services, business process, or policy reforms. Through its grants, GIF supports these breakthrough solutions from for-profit firms, non-profit organisations, researchers, and government agencies to maximise their impact and catalyse meaningful change.

If you are a non-profit and your innovation does not involve generating revenues from users or customers, a grant is likely to be most appropriate.

Stages of Funding

GIF has a staged funding approach, whereby the amount of funding available is tiered according to the level of maturity of your innovation and the activities proposed. The three tiers are:

Pilot – the innovation is at an early stage but you have a credible plan for how it can be developed and tested in a real-world setting. Funding of up to USD 230,000 is available to test core assumptions around operational, social, and financial viability.

Test and transition – the innovation has already shown promise of success at a small scale, and you have some information on your operational, social, and financial viability which you want to solidify before you scale. Funding of up to USD 2.3 million is available to support further growth and generate additional evidence on whether the innovation can achieve social impact and market viability, for commercial innovations.

Scale – the innovation has a strong evidence base and logistically credible plan for scaling to reach millions of people. Funding of up to USD 15 million is available to expand the reach of innovations with a view to reaching millions of people in the long term if successful.

What they Fund?

At GIF, they believe that innovation, by which they mean any solution that has potential to address an important development problem more effectively than existing approaches, can come from anyone, anywhere.

This means that they accept applications working in any sector in any developing country.

Any type of organisation may apply. This includes social enterprises, for-profit companies, non-profit organisations, government agencies, international organisations, and research institutions in any country. It is recommended that individual innovators, entrepreneurs, or researchers apply through an affiliated organisation.

Eligibility Criteria

Any type of organisation may apply. This includes social enterprises, for-profit companies, non-profit organisations, government agencies, international organisations, and research institutions in any country. It is recommended that individual innovators, entrepreneurs or researchers apply through an affiliated organisation.


GIF is open to innovations which meet their criteria in any sector or country. However, there are some activities they do not fund. These include:

  • Theoretical research, or purely lab-based activities that are not linked to implementation of a specific proposed real-world pilot or demonstration project.
  • Approaches that are only applicable in a single country (unless the innovation is expected to scale to a large proportion of one of the world’s most populous developing countries).

More information

You can sign up below to receive the EpiCARE Research Calls Newsletters, sent a few times a year, to inform about the new research calls: