Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan Launch Bold $3 Billion Initiative to ‘Cure All Diseases’
Science| | By Mauricio Castillo
In a potentially groundbreaking announcement, Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg and philanthropist/pediatrician Priscilla Chan (who is also Zuckerberg’s wife), by way of their company the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative have committed $3 billion to a project called Chan Zuckerberg Science with the sole purpose to “cure, prevent, or manage all diseases in our children’s lifetime.”
Led by neuroscientist Dr. Cori Bargeman, the project intends to “bring scientists and engineers together, build tools and technology, [and] grow the movement to fund science,” as told by Zuckerberg himself during the project’s launch event in San Francisco.
Chan Zuckerberg Science includes a program called Biohub, a partnership between Stanford University, Berkeley, and UCSF that “will focus on understanding underlying mechanisms of disease and developing new technologies which will lead to actionable diagnostics and effective therapies.”
Chan echoed the project’s goals, stating, “Mark and I believe that this is possible within our children’s lifetime. We are partnering with scientists, doctors, and engineers to help us achieve this goal … We’ll be investing more than $3 billion to achieve our collective vision.”
The project’s benefactors do recognize that while it is unlikely to stop people from getting sick and contracting diseases entirely, it is possible to find more efficient, cost-effective, and rapid ways to treat and cure diseases. They intend on making major diseases if not entirely curable, then at least treatable before the end of the 21st century.
“Our society spends 50 times more treating people who are sick than on finding cures. We can do better than that,” said Zuckerberg. He then goes on to give examples of new technologies and maneuvers their initiative will fund and support toward their endeavor.
Resident philanthropist Bill Gates appeared at the end of the event, stating, “I think all of us will be proud to say that we were here when Mark and Priscilla started this journey.”
The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative was created to “advance human potential and promote equality.”
Video of the launch event for Chan Zuckerberg Science has already been shared over 11,000 times and 117,000 reactions on Facebook (as of press). Check out the full video of the project’s announcement here: