The aim of the call is to facilitate multinational, collaborative research projects that will address critical translational questions to improve our knowledge concerning neurobiological mechanisms involved in resilience or vulnerability to environmental challenges in mental health.
The call will be conducted simultaneously by the respective national and regional funding organisations and coordinated centrally by the Joint Call Secretariat.
The call aims to fund preclinical research up to proof-of-concept clinical studies addressing neurobiological mechanistic understanding of vulnerability and resilience to mental disorders. Research areas may cover a broad range of aspects including among others genetic, epigenetic, anatomical, molecular, immunological and endocrine mechanisms. Proposals aiming at developing predictive, preventative, diagnostic and/or therapeutic approaches with the potential to enhance resilience based on known or hypothesized neurobiological mechanisms are within the scope of this call, as are proposals to understand the neurobiological basis of therapeutic technologies promoting resilience.
The NEURON funding organisations particularly strive to fund multidisciplinary and translational research proposals that combine basic, clinical and/or technological approaches. The consortia should submit novel, ambitious ideas that can only be achieved by the complementary collaboration between partners.
Only transnational projects will be funded. Each consortium submitting a proposal must comprise three to five research partners from at least three different participating countries.
Research proposals should cover at least one of the following areas:
- Fundamental research addressing mental health vulnerability and resilience including the pathogenesis, aetiology, progression, treatment and prevention of mental diseases initiated by exposure to adverse environmental challenges. This may include the use of knowledge on neurobiological mechanisms for the development of innovative technologies with the potential to promote mental health, reduce the incidence of mental disorders and improve clinical outcomes.
- Clinical research addressing mental health vulnerability and resilience aiming to develop novel strategies for prevention, diagnosis, patient stratification, therapy and/or rehabilitation for mental diseases initiated by exposure to adverse environmental challenges. This may include research proposals aiming at the identification of neurobiological targets to enhance resilience.
The following research areas are excluded from this call:
- Neurodegenerative disorders that are addressed by the EU Joint Programme –Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND)
- Proposals focusing on existing pharmacological treatments with their current indications
- Proposals focusing solely on technological developments in disregard of neurobiological mechanisms
There will be a two-stage procedure for joint applications: pre-proposals and full proposals. In both cases, one joint proposal document (in English) shall be prepared by the partners of a joint transnational proposal and must be submitted to the Joint Call Secretariat by the coordinator.
The submission deadline for pre-proposals is 7 March 2023, 14:00 CET.
By mid-May 2022 the coordinators of selected pre-proposals will be invited by the Joint Call Secretariat to submit a full proposal by June 2023.
Funding is expected to start in early 2024.