Gates Foundation Awards More Than $6 Million in GCE Grants

Gates Foundation Awards More Than $6 Million in GCE Grants

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has announced grants totaling $6.1 million to sixty-one projects through its Grand Challenges Explorations initiative.

Launched in 2008, the GCE initiative awards initial grants of $100,000 twice a year in support of ideas that address key global health and development challenges; projects that produce results have an opportunity to receive follow-on grants of up to $1 million. Recipients of Phase I funding in the latest grant cycle include Ratul Narain of BEMPU Technologies Private Ltd. in India, who will use his award to develop a simple temperature-monitoring baby bracelet designed to reduce the incidence of hypothermia in newborns; Abdur Razzaque Sarker of the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease in Bangladesh, who will test whether group prenatal care for women has a more positive effect on maternal and child health than traditional one-on-one prenatal care; Shannon Ross-Sheehy of East Tennessee State University, who will study whether the monitoring of eye movements in infants can be used to measure their neural development; and Marcela Pasetti of the University of Maryland, who will generate an in vitro model of the gut in order to test new treatments of enteric dysfunctions using intestinal stem cells and immune cells.

In addition, ten GCE projects that produced results in their initial phases were awarded Phase II funding of up to $1 million. Recipients include Yong Zhang of the National Institute for Viral Disease Control and Prevention in China, who is working to characterize vaccine-derived polioviruses to aid in polio monitoring and eradication efforts; and Alistair McEwan of the University of Sydney, who is developing a simple, low-cost electronic device built from recycled LEDs and microcontrollers to measure subcutaneous fat levels and thereby determine nutritional status in infants.

For a complete list of Phase I and Phase II grants awarded this fall, visit the Grand Challenges Explorations website.

"Grand Challenges Explorations Grants." Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Website 11/04/2014. Steven Buchsbaum, Rebekah Neal. "Learning How to Incite Healthy Behavior, How to Measure Brain Development." Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Blog Post 11/04/2014.