Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Launches $3 Billion Effort to Cure Disease

Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Launches $3 Billion Effort to Cure Disease

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative has announced the launch of Chan Zuckerberg Science, a $3 billion effort over the next ten years to prevent, manage, and cure disease.

Announced  by Priscilla Chan at an event streamed live via Facebook, the initiative will invest $600 million in Biohub, a new space in San Francisco's Mission Bay district where teams of researchers and engineers from Stanford, the University of California, San Francisco, and the University of California, Berkeley come together to collaborate on new ways to treat disease, build tools and technology for the scientific community, and conduct basic research that is too exploratory to receive government support. The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative will not be involved in reviewing and selecting investigators for the effort.

"The Biohub will provide many new opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration," said Ann Arvin, vice provost and dean of research at Stanford. "By bringing together basic biomedical scientists, engineers, and clinician investigators from across the three universities, the Biohub will greatly expand the development of new technologies needed to tackle major health challenges."

To be led by Cori Bragmann, Chan Zuckerberg Science also will work to develop "transformational technologies" that help researchers understand the characteristics of every cell in the body and will fund "challenge networks" that enlist experts from around the world to work on urgent problems such as how certain genes affect neurogenerative diseases, TechCrunch reports.

"Nobody really knows how many cell types there are in the human body," said Stephen Quake, professor of bioengineering and applied sciences at Stanford and a Biohub co-director. "Understanding them through singular cell sequencing technologies and genome editing could improve treatment for cancer, diabetes, infection, and more."

"Stanford Part of Bay Area Biohub Collaboration for Health Research." Stanford University Press Release 09/21/2016. Josh Constine. "Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Announces $3 Billion Investment to Cure Disease." Tech Crunch 09/21/2016.