ERA-Net on Rare Diseases

Basic Information


"Rare diseases represent an important public-health issue, affecting 26-30 million persons across Europe, and a major challenge for research. The fragmentation of resources and knowledge for the 6000-8000 rare diseases and the lack of treatment for the majority of them necessitate a coordinated European approach to unravel the underlying molecular defects and pathophysiological mechanisms. The low number of affected patients requires transnational collaboration with multidisciplinary approaches to map prevalences, build patient registries, identify biomarkers, develop new diagnostics and finally perform clinical studies for the development of treatments. The successful linking of research funding organisations in E-Rare-1 and the subsequent exemplary joint funding activities have attested the need of, and the acknowledgment from, the research community for transnational funding of collaborative, multidisciplinary and ambitious projects on rare diseases. It has leveraged funding for rare disease research in countries without specific programmes for rare diseases and thus enabled the participation of researchers in these countries to transnational projects. The E-Rare-2 project aims at deepening and extending the cooperation among the E-Rare-1 and the five new partners by systematic exchange of information, yearly launching of joint calls, thorough assessment of the funding mechanisms and results of the funded research projects and, finally, strategic activities aiming at a sustainable development and extension of the network. Special attention will be given to the outreach and knowledge exchange with new member states, countries outside of Europe and key stakeholders/initiatives important for rare diseases. E-Rare-2 activities will thus further contribute to reducing fragmentation of research and resources through the enhanced coordination and transnational funding of excellent research on rare diseases, thereby shaping the European Research Area for rare diseases."

Main research priorities of the network

-Update and extend the information exchange on research funding activities taken in the field of rare disease -Fund transnational collaborative research through yearly joint transnational calls -Define common indicators to harmonize the monitoring of funded projects and to adjust strategies for future funding programmes with maximization of the scientific output and topical coverage -Create a sustainable network based on E-Rare and including a critical mass of European research funding agencies -Engage and disseminate the knowledge generated by E-Rare

Research fields covered by the network

  • Health

Target Groups

  • Higher Education Institutions (HEIs)
  • Public Research Organisations (PROs)
  • Private and Semi-private Research and Technology Organisations (RTOs)
  • SME (Small and Medium Enterprises)
  • Other

Is connected with

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Joint Calls

Joint Call Title Type Launch Date Deadline
End Date
6th Joint Call for European Research Projects on Rare Diseases two-stages 11/08/2013 20/01/2014

Submitted: 141


Submitted: 40


Funded: 14

5th Joint Call for European Research Projects on Rare Diseases two-stages 11/05/2012 31/01/2013

Submitted: 165


Submitted: 55


Funded: 12

4th Joint Call for European Research Projects on Rare Diseases driven by Young Investigators two-stages 07/12/2011 31/01/2012

Submitted: 76


Submitted: 36


Funded: 11

3rd Joint Call for Research Projects on Rare Diseases two-stages 12/12/2010  

Submitted: 139


Submitted: 39


Successful: 17

Funded: 12