Coronavirus (COVID-19) Research Updates

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DER is here to help!

As we progress through this unparalleled time, we are making adjustments to navigate the Coronavirus (COVID-19); DER is fully operational, although we have moved entirely offsite.The DER team has instituted many tools to ensure that we can continue to serve the faculty.We wanted to take a minute to highlight some of those tools and resources that we will help to inform and ensure efficient, seamless service.

Engineering Research Reactivation

On the Engineering Research Reactivation all-inclusive SharePoint page you will find helpful reopening resources, important processes, and documents that need to be completed and approved to "return to research". 

DER Technology:

  • Microsoft Teams: Each DER staff is equipped with Microsoft Teams and is available to communicate through this tool.  Through this valuable tool, the team can simulate face to face contact by using video conferencing, screen share, and chat tools.  Other MSU research support offices, such as OSP and Business Connect,also use these tools.  This enables DER staff to communicate efficiently with other authorized MSU persons who are involved in the proposal development and submission process.
  • Avaya Phone: Each DER staff member is able to answer their desk phone remotely to simplify communication.  Please feel free to call the desk phone of your DER staff member, and they will be able to answer while being offsite.  Please find contact information at
  • Remote access and connectivity: Each DER staff member has access to our remote server and ticket system.  This ticket system and remote server enable DER staff to continue to serve with seamless service.  The team members also have access to past proposal documents, resource guides, and many tools to promote and ensure proposal compliance.  In the absence of a team member, a backup DER team member is able to use the DER Ticket System to continue the progress of the proposal toward submission.

It is DER’s desire to provide efficient, seamless service.  Please feel free to reach out to our team if you have any questions related to any of these tools.  DER is here to help.


MSU Research Updates

College of Engineering

  • Engineering Coronavirus Site - "People First, Student-Centered" message from the Dean Kempel on the Engineering Building and DECS: Memo (3/25/20)Current Engineering Research Status: Remote Operations. Memo (3/23/2020)
    • Check-in Procedures for EGR Employees: You should not be coming to campus unless you have been pre-approved by your supervisor, department chairperson/director AND the Dean of Engineering (or designee). Fill out this form to begin approval process. (3/30/2020)


MSU COVID-19 Research Websites and News

    • COVID-19 Research Funding Opportunities: A new page has been developed to curate announcements and new opportunities related to COVID-19 research and related stimulus funding. Visit the site often for the latest updates. If your unit receives announcements, please send them to for addition to the page. (Updated daily) NOTE: Federal agencies are updating some deadlines and changing opportunity numbers providing more time to apply in certain cases. If you are currently working on a submission, be sure to confirm both the due date and opportunity number on that agency's website.
    • OSP Communication on Changes to the Scope of Work or Timeline for the Project. If you are asked by faculty, or are aware of significant impacts to externally funded sponsored projects, we have documented below guidance for you to share. Read the full guidance here. (4/14/2020)
    • COVID-19 Resources for Researchers: For any questions related to continuing research during this limited period, be sure to refer to the new website set up by the Office of Research and Innovation. If you are working from home, also refer to the Keep MSU Working website for assistance. (3/30/2020)
    • Information on Hiring Modifications as it related to Research: Units are asked to keep their head count for these positions consistent at this time. Hiring new GAs to replace departing ones is acceptable, but units should not increase headcount over current levels. Hiring for any of these positions that are grant funded will be monitored by the Office of the Senior Vice President for Research and Innovation (OVPRI). For more information visit the HR website here. (3/27/2020)
    • The Innovation Center staff in Business Connect, MSU Technologies, and Spartan Innovations, are primarily working remotely as a consequence of the coronavirus outbreak. Communications may be slightly delayed; however, we are operating during regular business hours during this difficult time. An Agreement Portal is now being used to submit agreement requests, and it can be accessed here:
    • Laboratory Research - Limit access to only essential research-related operations. Researchers must suspend non-essential research activities conducted on-campus or at remote MSU sites across the state: (3/24/2020)
    • Research continuity and COVID-19 in light of Governor Whitmer's Executive Order. Memo (3/23/2020)
    • Campus Animal Resources will be amending our services to maintain care for current populations of animals to the best of our abilities.Current rules can be read here. (3/17/2020)
    • Laboratory Research - Activities Can Continue with Special Precautions and Modifications: (3/17/2020)
  • MSU Human Research Protection Program (HRPP) has established this webpage with information about the impact of COVID-19 and to address questions from researchers, including Institutional Review Board requirements for modifications:
    • MSU Human Research Restrictions and Extension of the Stay Home, Stay Safe Executive Order On April 24, 2020, Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order No. 2020-59, extending her prior “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order through May 15, 2020 at 11:59pm. As the situation evolves, MSU continues to review and discuss when to resume research activities, including in-person participant interactions in human research studies. While MSU continues to evaluate when and how research activities may resume, all of the human research restrictions described in the March 26 email below are now in effect until further notice.
    • MSU Human Research Restrictions and the Stay Safe, Stay Home Executive Order. The order requires individuals in Michigan to stay at home or their place of residence, unless an exception is met such as maintaining basic minimum operations or traveling to receive necessary medical care. For the full text of the order, please visit the Executive Order webpage of the Office of Governor. Read the full message here. (3/26/2020)
    • MSU Human Research Activities is placing temporary restrictions on human subject research effective immediately. These restrictions will last until Monday, May 4, and we will reevaluate this decision on an ongoing basis, sharing additional updates or modifications as more information becomes available. Read the full message here. (3/16/2020)
  • MSU Office of Sponsored Programs / Contract and Grant Administration (SOP/CGA) has added a webpage with information about the impact of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19): COVID-19: Information from SPA/OSP/CG



Sponsor Updates

  • Council on Governmental Relations: Institutional Agency Responds to COVID-19 and Additional Resources: See full list of resources.
  • TRB Transportation Research E-Newsletter issued with extensive content related to COVID-19.  See updated deadlines. (3/17/2020)
  • ARPA-E
    • ARPA-E Actions Owing to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. ARPA-E is encouraging its awardees to look for work-arounds to keep work on its sponsored projects ongoing. Read the full notification here. (4/6/2020)
  • DOE
  • NASA
    • NASA has released an Assistant Administrator for Procurement Message on Coronavirus. See the message here. (3/10/2020)


COVID-19 Funding Opportunities:

  1. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services updated a broad agency announcement (BAA) on March 6, 2020 to focus specifically on products to diagnose, prevent or treat coronavirus infections. The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) issued the BAA to solicit proposals for advanced development and licensure of COVID-19 diagnostics, vaccines or medicines, such as therapeutics or antivirals. BARDA will provide funding, as well as expertise and core services to support development projects selected through this BAA. These products include diagnostic tests (assays); vaccines; therapeutics; medications to help regulate or normalize the immune system (immunomodulators); therapeutics targeting lung repair; medicines that prevent infections either before or after exposure to the virus (pre-exposure or post-exposure prophylaxis); respiratory protective devices; and ventilators. Learn more (link is external)
  2. The National Science Foundation, as of March 5, 2020, is funding 20 research projects across the agency involving COVID-19. In response to the urgency of COVID-19 and increasing inquiries from the research community, NSF issued a letter to researchers inviting additional proposals for rapid response grants related to the virus. This letter welcomes research to help understand COVID-19, inform and educate the public about virus transmission and prevention, and develop effective strategies for addressing this challenge at the local, state and national levels. Support for these efforts is made through NSF’s Rapid Response Research (RAPID) funding mechanism, which enables the agency to swiftly process and support research that addresses an urgent need. Learn more (link is external)
  3. The Department of Energy (DOE) is soliciting ideas about how the department and the National Laboratories can contribute resources for science and technology efforts around COVID-19. From the DoE:  Through its user facilities, computational power and enabling infrastructure, DOE has unique capabilities that the scientific community may leverage for the COVID-19 response and recovery. DOE does not provide medical and clinical work; instead, the department's mission complements the efforts of the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Defense and other federal partners by helping to understand the scientific phenomena contributing to COVID-19, from the structure of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes the disease, to models that can mimic its spread. The department encourages researchers to consider scientific questions that underpin COVID-19 response and that the research community may answer using DOE user facilities, computational resources and enabling infrastructure. Any research questions that the scientific community may address with DOE resources can be emailed to (link sends e-mail).
  4. COVID-19 Research Funding Opportunities are being posted on this page on the Office of Research and Innovation website.

  5. GrantForward has released a free list of grants related to COVID-19 today ranging from small scale foundation to large-scale federal and targeting a range of applicants from the research community to commercial organizations. Learn more here.
  6. InfoEd Global is proud to be able to share this library of COVID-19 funding opportunities and resources with our colleagues in the research realm and the broader community at large. Click here to be directed to InfoEd's page.
  7. COGR Institutional and Agency Responses to COVID-19 and Additional Resources. See the full page of resources here.