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ERC: 5000 reasons to celebrate

In June, the European Research Council (ERC) celebrated a symbolic milestone: The funding of its 5 000th researcher. The 5000th grantee, Dr Iva Tolic, is a Croatian cell biophysicist whose research examines the forces acting on chromosomes during cell division. Her research could be a game-changer in the development of new forms of cancer treatment. 
Set up in 2007, the ERC is the first pan-European funding body for frontier research, and a flagship component of Horizon 2020. ERC grants are awarded on the basis of scientific excellence to researchers, upcoming or established, across all fields of research. With a total budget of EUR 13.1 billion from 2014-2020, ERC represents 17% of the overall Horizon 2020 budget. To date, eight Nobel laureates and three Fields Medallists have been ERC grant recipients.