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CDC Commits $90M to Create Public Health Pathogen Genomics Research Centers

NEW YORK — The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has earmarked $90 million to fund the establishment of six US Public Health Pathogen Genomics Centers of Excellence that will be tasked with developing technologies to address microbial threats to public health.

The centers will work with academic and public health organizations to advance pathogen genomics and molecular epidemiology to improve the control of, and response to, infectious disease, the CDC said.

Grant funding is expected to be awarded in August 2022, with projects beginning the following month.

Earlier this year, the White House announced that the Biden administration had committed $1.7 billion to support the surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 variants, including viral genome sequencing, genomic epidemiology centers, and new bioinformatics infrastructure.

At the time, the government said that $400 million would be used to create six Centers of Excellence in Genomic Epidemiology that will work with state health departments and academic institutes to develop new genomic epidemiology technologies such as surveillance tools to track pathogens and bioinformatic workflows.