Your mission: A quantum shift for new antiviral agents

Hello people with radical new ideas! We need breakthrough innovations to fight viral infections. We need bold ideas. We need you.

We have known this at least since the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic: Viruses are an unpredictable threat to global health, the economy and society. According to the WHO, after just over a year of the pandemic, more than three million people have died worldwide. The burdens caused by long-term consequences for those who are infected, by social tensions, and by the economic costs of the required countermeasures are tremendous. It is obvious: The enormous acceleration of new developments, which was crucial for vaccines in this pandemic, has not yet been achieved for antiviral agents. More than a year since the pandemic began, there is a lack of effective therapeutics against SARS-CoV-2, despite immense national and international efforts.

Highly innovative ideas for drug development are needed now to ensure that antivirals are available more quickly in the future. We therefore cordially and urgently invite you to this future-relevant Challenge:
It can help turn your ideas into a breakthrough innovation.

Prove this: Your solution can rapidly deliver antivirals to combat newly emerging viruses.

We are looking for innovative solutions to combat viral infections. The aim of the Challenge will be to prove that the developed systematic approach can be used to provide antivirals within a short period of time. At the end of the Challenge, this will be demonstrated in a proof-of-concept adapted to the stage of development.

So: demonstrate how quickly you can innovate. Solutions can include, for example, new approaches to broad-spectrum antivirals, but also platform technologies for developing antiviral agents.


We support: Your disruptive innovation

Participating in the Challenge demands the teams to their full potential. We therefore provide intensive and individual support. This includes funding the teams as well as individual support from a Challenge coach, who has significant experience in the Challenge area and has already implemented high-impact innovations.

Thinking one step further: Ideas with the potential for disruptive innovations must be brought to market to benefit patients. That is why SPRIND continues to support projects with breakthrough innovation potential even after the Challenge has ended.

The Challenge

Our Challenge is built on competition between a variety of teams. Over the three-year duration of the Challenge, we will jointly find out which approaches have potential for a breakthrough innovation. Based on interim evaluations, the jury will decide which teams will continue to participate in the Challenge. As a finalist, you will get the opportunity to demonstrate your groundbreaking approach in a proof-of-concept.


This is where we will introduce your team and the other people with radical new ideas participating in the Challenge.

Jury and coach

You will receive the essential support to implement even bold ideas. Therefore, you have a coach and a jury of internationally renowned experts at your side.

"We need to use innovative approaches to produce antiviral agents that can be used to fight human pathogenic viruses, especially those with pandemic potential. That would be a genuine breakthrough innovation. This Challenge is making an important contribution to that end."
– Prof. Dr. Karin Mölling

We will keep you updated about all challenges here.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact us.

Jano Costard Jano Costard, Challenge Officer

How to join the Challenge

Registrations for the Challenge will be open soon. Send an informal email to and we will inform you as soon as you can register for this Challenge.