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BBSRC-FAPESP Joint Pump-Priming Awards for AMR and Insect Pest Resistance in Livestock and Agriculture

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Understanding and managing resistance, including novel methods, for pathogen and pest control.

Newton Fund webpage on

Call status: Closed
Previous call: 8 August 2018 - 11 October 2018


BBSRC in the UK and the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) in Brazil are pleased to announce a joint Newton Fund call for collaborative research proposals focussing on Anti-Microbial Resistance (AMR) and insect pest resistance in livestock and agriculture.

Although this call is being managed by BBSRC, we would welcome all disciplines to consider how they might address the aims of the call.


The call is being managed as a two stage process with the first stage (open now) being a pump-priming proposal. Important: Only applicants that hold a successful pump-priming award will be eligible to submit full proposals to the second stage call, and these proposals will receive additional peer review.

The pump-priming grants will be short-term projects of up to 12 months awarded to a maximum of £80,000 (80% FEC) in the UK with matched contribution from FAPESP providing the Brazilian component. Please note that it is not necessary to request an equal amount of money from both sides but it is envisaged a balanced partnership in terms of research effort. BBSRC and FAPESP are looking to support around 10 pump-priming projects to establish new or build on existing collaborations.

Spend against the pump-priming projects must take place between April 2018 and March 2019.

Scientific scope

Proposed projects should aim to inform, in the context of the wider Brazilian agri-ecosystem, efforts to combat AMR and insect-pest resistance in Brazil by investigating one or more of the following priority areas:

  • Host pathogen/pest interactions
    • Understanding the role of host-pathogen host-pest interactions in the development and transmission of resistance including the role of farmed animal, crop and soil microbiomes in acting as a reservoir, drug target or alternative control strategy
    • Understanding the implications of reducing the inappropriate use of antimicrobials and insecticides, for example as growth promoters, prophylactic use, excess use on GM resistant crops.
  • Underpinning mechanisms
    • Understanding the underpinning mechanisms associated with the emergence, persistence, transmission, evolution, co-selection of relevant resistant pathogens/insect pests or resistance genes
    • Understanding mechanisms of action of antimicrobials/insecticides
    • Identification/validation of novel targets for novel antimicrobials and insecticides.
  • Epidemiology
    • Identification of key agriculturally relevant drivers and reservoirs
    • Understanding of prevalence, pathogenicity and transmission dynamics (genetic, organism and host level), including the biological effects of agricultural management practice on disease epidemiology
    • Mathematical modelling in an AMR and/or insecticide resistance context.
  • Disease management and control
    • Diagnostics for pathogens and/or insect pests, especially rapid on farm diagnostics; and other biological tools and technologies that can support decision making
    • Novel alternatives for pathogen control, including immune stimulation and biocontrol
    • Novel agents for pathogen and/or insect control, including antimicrobials and insecticides, therapeutics and vaccines.

The primary focus should be on microbiological pathogens and/or insect pests of relevance to Brazilian arable crops, farmed animals and reservoirs in agricultural soils, and agents designed to target them; including bactericides, fungicides, broad spectrum antimicrobials and insecticides. This includes pathogens with zoonotic potential where the focus is on farmed animal health. The work also needs to be clear in how it addresses Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) objectives.

This excludes research with a human health focus; and animal research on a human only disease where the animal is a vector for the human disease or is being used as a model species.

While they cannot receive funding, we would like to encourage work with relevant industry partners, where applicable, including farming, breeding and the agricultural supply industry.

Call steps

  1. Stage one: Pump priming
    The purpose of the pump-priming award is to enable UK and Brazilian researchers to work together to develop preliminary data/partnerships for competitive, integrated, collaborative research proposals for submission to the second stage BBSRC-FAPESP Joint AMR and Insect Pest Resistance in Livestock and Agriculture call closing date in September/October 2018.
  2. Stage two: Full projects
    Following on from successful pump-priming awards, full projects will start in April 2019 and will last up to two years, and will be of a larger scale than the pump priming projects. BBSRC and FAPESP are looking to support around five stage two projects, dependent upon the success of the pump-priming projects.

Important: Only applicants that hold a successful pump-priming award will be eligible to submit proposals to stage two, and these proposals will receive additional peer review.

Successful pump-priming projects will be able to submit a two-year research proposal in September/October 2018, and will be asked to report on the progress of their pump-priming award prior to the second stage panel meeting (December 2018).


Joint pump-priming applications are invited from UK and São Paulo-based researchers eligible to receive funding as Principal Investigator from BBSRC and FAPESP respectively. For this Newton Fund call, BBSRC will support the project costs for successful UK applicants, whilst FAPESP will support the project costs for successful São Paulo-based applicants.

UK applicants - Standard BBSRC eligibility conditions apply to this call. All UK applicants must be eligible to receive research funding from BBSRC as Principal/Co-Investigator; see the BBSRC grants guide for further details.

São Paulo applicants - Researchers eligible for FAPESP funding must be formally associated with public or private higher education or research institutions in the state of São Paulo and, specifically in this call, must meet the FAPESP eligibility requirements for regular research grants.

Important: Researchers from the state of São Paulo must consult FAPESP about their eligibility no later than 6 November 2017 (one month prior call deadline). In order to have their eligibility analysed, applicants must send an email to with subject "BBSRC AMR - request for analysis of eligibility", attaching the following documents:

  1. Name and affiliation of the applicant (SP and UK PIs)
  2. Tentative title and a five-line abstract of the project
  3. FAPESP Modality desired (pump priming) and its duration
  4. Estimated amount of budget to be requested to FAPESP and to BBSRC
  5. Summary CV (FAPESP model) of the SP applicant
  6. Information about whether the applicant is currently a PI of a FAPESP ongoing project (indicate project number)
  7. Estimated time devoted to the project (hours/week)

Within up to 20 days of receiving this request, FAPESP will send the applicant a declaration as to the applicant’s eligibility within this call.

Full guidelines for SP applicants are available on the FAPESP website.

Principal Investigators are responsible for ensuring that they, and any Co-Investigators included on the application, are eligible. Applications involving any ineligible applicants (UK or Brazil) will result in the whole application being rejected.

The following BBSRC schemes will not apply to this call: New Investigator; Industrial Partnership Awards and Industrial LINK. BBSRC will not fund studentships as part of this call.

Examples of eligible activities and costs for the pump-priming award

Please note that BBSRC and FAPESP are able to accept different eligible costs within the pump-priming proposals:

UK applicants (to be funded by BBSRC - please check the BBSRC grants guide)

  • Staff time and consumables
  • Travel and subsistence costs to enable consortia to participate in workshops
  • Exchange visits (short and longer term and in both countries)
  • Access to facilities
  • Estates and indirects.

São Paulo applicants (to be funded by FAPESP)

  • Travel and subsistence costs to enable consortia to participate in workshops
  • Exchange visits (short and longer term and in both countries)
  • Direct research costs (consumables, services, low cost equipment)
  • Access to facilities (access to specialist equipment to support research to gather preliminary data to support full applications to this call).

Note: FAPESP does not support salary costs. For the pump-priming stage, overheads will not be supported.

Pump-priming partnership building workshop

BBSRC and FAPESP are holding a UK-Brazil partnership building workshop for the pump-priming call on 4-6 October 2017 in São Paulo, to bring together UK and Brazilian scientists in this area. This will provide opportunities for face-to-face networking and for new UK-Brazil collaborations to develop.

An open call for workshop participants closed on 29 August 2017, no further applications will be considered. Participants in the workshop will be able to further develop and finalise proposals with non-workshop participants after the event, prior to the submission deadline on 6 December 2017.

Outputs from the workshop are available in the downloads section.

Please note that applicants who do not attend the UK-Brazil workshop are still eligible to apply to the call.

The Newton Fund

This call forms part of BBSRC’s Newton Fund activities and therefore requires projects to address Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) objectives alongside their scientific aims.

The Newton Fund was set up by UK government in 2014 to build research and innovation partnerships with 16 partner countries to support their economic development and social welfare, and to develop their research and innovation capacity for long-term sustainable growth. The total budgeted UK investment for the Newton Fund is £735 million from 2014 to 2021, and partner countries provide matched resources within the Fund.

The Fund forms part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment which is monitored by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). ODA funded activity focuses on outcomes that promote the long-term sustainable growth of countries on the OECD Development Assistance Committee list. Newton Fund countries represent a sub-set of this list.

How to apply

This call is closed to applications.

Application process: Stage one:

Brazilian-UK research teams must prepare a joint research proposal, which will be submitted to BBSRC by the UK Principal Investigator (using the Je-S system, see external links) and to FAPESP by the São Paulo Principal Investigator (on paper - please see full guidelines for SP applicants on the FAPESP website.

Applications may involve researchers from multiple eligible UK institutions, but should be submitted as a single Je-S application submitted by the organisation of the lead UK Principal Investigator. If successful, the lead organisation would be the recipient of the UK component of the award, and would be responsible for managing and distributing funds to other participating UK institutions in accordance with the terms and conditions of the award. Funding for the Brazilian component of the collaboration will be paid by FAPESP to the Brazilian partner institution(s).

For further information and guidance on submitting the BBSRC Je-S form, please see the full call announcement PDF.

Application process: Stage two:

Instructions for UK and Brazilian researchers around how to apply to the second stage call for full projects will be made available nearer to the call opening in September/October 2018.


Stage Date
Pump-priming call opens 25 September 2017
Joint UK-Brazil workshop 4-6 October 2017
Eligibility pre-consultation (SP PIs) 6 November 2017
Pump-priming application deadline 6 December 2017
Funding decisions announced Early February 2018
Pump priming projects (6-12 months) begin April 2018
Submission of full research proposals September/October 2018
Full (two-year) research projects to start April 2019

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