Deadline for pre-proposal submission:
10 March 2020; 14:00 CET
8 January 2020
Aim of the call
The aim of the call is to facilitate multinational, collaborative research projects that will address important questions related to sensory disorders and their impact on the nervous system. They may include, among others, research into all the sensory modalities including the somatosensory system. Research questions addressing synergies across modalities and multisensory dysfunction are also encouraged in the present call.
Proposals should focus on impairment and/or loss of sensory function of neural origin. The proposals may include studies on sensory neurons, including receptor cells, the related neural pathways and connected brain areas. Research on accessory, non-neural parts of sensory organs is not the main focus of the call, and may be included only if they have a significant impact on the nervous system. Research questions may encompass the entire lifespan.
The sensory system is particularly amenable to innovative therapeutic approaches, and recent years have witnessed remarkable developments in this regard. Innovative treatment approaches may include e.g. restoration of function through gene, molecular and cell therapies, regenerative strategies, new electronic interfaces or prostheses. The use of novel approaches to improve therapeutic or diagnostic technology is accepted in the context of this call. Proposals may comprise studies on e.g. disorders of development affecting sensory systems, the role of environmental factors on sensory functions as well as health economic issues, based on existing cohorts or registries. A focus on chronic pain is excluded from the present call.
The NEURON funding organizations particularly wish to promote multi-disciplinary work and translational research proposals that combine basic and clinical approaches. In the context of the present call, the collaboration of clinicians with fundamental neuroscientists in the postulating consortia is highly encouraged, where appropriate, along with other disciplines with specific expertise. The consortia are expected to submit novel, ambitious ideas that can only be achieved by the complementary collaboration between partners.
Research proposals should cover at least one of the following areas:
a) Fundamental research addressing the pathogenesis and etiology of sensory disorders. This may include the development of innovative or shared resources and technologies. The relevance of the research to sensory systems disorders must be clearly described. Pre-clinical studies may be included. Any animal or cell models should already be established and validated.
b) Clinical research to develop novel strategies for prevention, diagnosis, patient stratification, therapy and/or rehabilitation for sensory disorders.
Clinical studies are eligible of proof concept . The establishment of large patient cohorts will not be funded by NEURON, but the use of existing cohorts and exploitation existing data sets is encouraged. Appropriate access to relevant, well-characterized patient populations able biomaterial collections must be demonstrated. Applicants should demonstrate that they have the expertise and range of skills required to conduct the study or that appropriate collaborations are in place. The development of new animal or cell models is excluded from the scope of the call unless it constitutes a marginal support of the main part of the proposal (i.e. as a strategy to strengthen the results or hypothesis in a project). If relevant, it is highly recommended to get in contact with appropriate European infrastructures early in the planning of the projects, in particular EATRIS-ERIC (focused on translational medicine), BBMRI-ERIC (focused on biobanking) and ELIXIR (focused on data sharing). Different platforms can be found via the European Strategy Forum for Research Infrastructures in Europe - ESFRI (www.esfri.eu).
The following research areas are excluded from this call:
The ERA-NET NEURON seeks to strengthen patient engagement in research. Applicants are expected to include patients, where appropriate, in their research process. Meaningful patient en- gagement can occur at the level of research planning, conducting research or research result dis- semination. Patient representatives will participate in the review of selected proposals and provide feedback on patient engagement aspects. All the applications should include a description of expected outcomes with potential relevance for the patients.
 Eligibility and funding requirements for clinical trials vary between the partner countries. Clarification may be obtained from the individual funding agencies.
 Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative dementias, Parkinson’s disease (PD) and PD-related disorders, Prion disease, Motor neuron diseases, Huntington’s disease, Spinocerebellar ataxia, Spinal muscular atrophy
Please check carefully the national regulations for further information on eligible beneficiaries
► Call text: Read more about this call’s purpose, aims, and application procedures.
► Country-specific information: Please study thoroughly the regulations for your country/region
► Contact persons: It is strongly recommended that applicants call their national/regional contact person prior to submitting a proposal.
► Proposal templates and online submission: Please download the pre-proposal template and find the link for the pre-proposal submission here.
► Partnering tool: A partnering tool has been launched to facilitate interdisciplinary and international networking. We encourage you to register and increase options for partnering in this and future calls of ERA-NET NEURON. Register here now!
For general information, please contact the Joint Call Secretariat:
ERA-NET NEURON Joint Call Secretariat
State Research Agency (AEI)
Phone: +34 91 603 83 98