WINNIPEG -- Half a dozen researchers from the University of Manitoba have been given $7.5 million in federal and provincial funding in order to research COVID-19.

According to a news release from the U of M, the six researchers are investigating the impacts of the virus on certain populations, such as children, newcomers and First Nations. They are also examining cellular aspects of the virus, and using an existing drug for treatment.

Canada’s Health Minister Patty Hajdu announced the funding on Thursday. The investment is from the Government of Canada through the Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR), as well as provincial partners such as Research Manitoba.

The six researchers who will be receiving the funding include:

  1. Lori Wilkinson, who’s researching how COVID-19 regulations influence the mental health of Indigenous and racialized people, as well as immigrants. She is receiving $671,332;
  2. Meghan Azad, studying the direct and indirect impacts of the virus and pandemic on children. She is receiving a total of $1,739,795;
  3. Kevin Coombs is investigating how COVID-19 impacts a large number of genes and proteins in lung cells. He is the recipient of $790,162;
  4. Josée Lavoie, who is developing a First Nations Social Secretariat of Manitoba-based platform for modelling community pandemics. She has been awarded $475, 836;
  5. Nathan Nickel is looking at data on who is being tested for COVID-19 in Manitoba to see how this information can be used to scale-up the public health response where it’s needed most. He is receiving $317, 917; and
  6. Ryan Zarychanski, who is looking at whether certain blood thinning medications can improve the outcomes for those hospitalized with COVID-19. He is receiving $3,573,336.

“I congratulate our successful investigators and their partners and collaborators for their essential research to address this global health emergency,” said Dr. Digvir Jayas, vice-president (research and international) and distinguished professor at the University of Manitoba, in the news release.