The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation introduced its nonprofit biotech spinoff — the Bill and Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute (MRI) — focusing on diseases that disproportionately affect the poor, at the 2018 BIO International Convention this week.
The MRI aims to develop new medicines and vaccines for malaria, tuberculosis and diarrhea — and hadsfunding of $273 million for its first four years in order to do so.
The biotech will be headed up by Dr. Penny Heaton, a vaccine developer recruited from Novartis. The institute opened its doors in January in temporary space in Cambridge, Mass.
Without the concern over profit, the drug company can measure success in lives saved, not dollars returned, explained Trevor Mundel, head of the Gates Foundation’s global health operations.
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