Ilia State University wins $460,000 award to establish a Center for Pathogen Research and Education

September 08, 2014


In partnership with Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation (SRNSF) and the Georgian Research and Development Foundation (GRDF), CRDF Global has selected Ilia State University to receive $460,000 to establish a new Center for Pathogen Research and Education (CPRE) in Georgia.

The center will further molecular pathogen research in Georgia by implementing hands-on research projects that identify new pathogen strains for collaborative research and analysis. The CPRE will allow both undergraduate and graduate students to develop modern research projects involving vector-borne diseases, antibiotic-resistant pathogens, and other viruses. Studying and identifying these potentially dangerous pathogens is crucial in protecting the country’s population from many infectious diseases.




The grant will primarily focus on purchasing the latest materials and equipment to expand on Ilia State University’s ability to conduct advanced research and will also introduce new curricula on pathogens for Masters and PhD students.

“The purchase of major equipment such as the liquid-chromatography mass-spectrometer would be impossible without such grant,” said Dr. Revaz Solomonia, project director at Ilia State University.

Given that the center is the first of its kind in Georgia, it will advance the scientific capacity of researchers and universities throughout the country and foster long-term international partnerships and transparent scientific cooperation with external linkages to national and international collaborators. In order to foster collaboration, which is integral to the CPRE program, researchers at other Georgian universities will also have access to the center.

“Ilia State University’s application tops other applications in its sustainability, research and training plans” said Dr. Marilyn Pifer, Capacity Building Programs Director at CRDF Global. The center will also provide research opportunities for junior scientists, with 10 percent of the grant going towards supporting early-career researchers through specialized trainings and activities.

Funding will be distributed to Ilia State University over two years and is comprised of $60,000 from SRNSF and $400,000 from the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA).


For more information about CRDF Global’s CPRE program, please contact: 

Nikoloz Burdiashvili