Mark Zuckerberg And Priscilla Chan Donate $25M To Gates Foundation Coronavirus Accelerator

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is donating $25 million to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation-backed accelerator developing treatments to fight the novel coronavirus.

What Happened

The total number of deaths in the United States due to the COVID-19 pandemic has exceeded 2,000, with 122,653 infections reported in its 55 states and territories. Due to the lack of a vaccine or a dedicated treatment, there is increasing interest in repurposing existing drugs to fight and treat the disease.

The COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator was launched with a $125 million seed funding and is a joint effort of Microsoft Inc. MSFT co-founder Bill Gates and his wife Melinda Gates’ foundation, along with Mastercard Inc. MA and the Wellcome Trust, a London research-based charity. 

In a statement released by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the co-founders Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook Inc. FB, said, "The Therapeutics Accelerator will enable researchers to quickly determine whether or not existing drugs have a potential benefit against COVID-19. We hope these coordinated efforts will help stop the spread of COVID-19 as well as provide shared, reusable strategies to respond to future pandemics."

Why It Matters

Pharmaceutical companies are in a race to repurpose drugs to treat the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. HIV protease inhibitors and drugs for Ebola are being considered for treatment. 

Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc. INO, NanoViricides Inc. NNVC, and Moderna, Inc. MRNA are some of the companies working on this approach.

Photo Credit:: Anthony Quintano via Wikimedia.

Posted In: Bill GatescoronavirusMark ZuckerbergMelinda GatesPriscilla ChanNewsTechGeneral