Mar 27, 2020 · 3 min read

CZI Commits $25 Million to Speed Development of COVID-19 Treatments

CZI Joins Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, Mastercard in Standing Up COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator

Photo of a scientist examining a vial.
A scientist examines a vial. Photograph by Andrew Brookes.

Today, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) committed $25 million to the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator — a global effort to help speed the development of treatments for COVID-19. In partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard, CZI’s investment will support efforts to identify and assess potentially promising therapies for COVID-19, expedite their development, and scale up their production to benefit millions of patients worldwide. CZI is providing $20 million, with another $5 million available based on future needs.

“We’re excited to partner with the Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard to help the biomedical research community quickly identify, develop, and test treatments for COVID-19,” said CZI co-founders and co-CEOs Dr. Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg. “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.”

The COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator is aimed at accelerating and evaluating new and repurposed drugs to treat patients with COVID-19. The Accelerator brings together resources and expertise to lower the financial and technical risk for academia, biotech, and pharmaceutical companies to develop treatments while ensuring equal access to these therapies once they are developed — including making them available and affordable in underserved communities. The Accelerator will work with the World Health Organization, government, and private sector funders and organizations, as well as global regulatory and policy-setting institutions. For more information about the Accelerator, read the joint announcement press release.

“In joining the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, we’re taking part in a coordinated response that will help address this outbreak, and future outbreaks as well,” said CZI Head of Science Cori Bargmann. “By working together, we can dramatically accelerate drug development and deployment to find the effective therapeutics that will ultimately save lives.”

For more information about how CZI and our grant partners are responding to COVID-19, visit our website.


About the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative

Founded by Dr. Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg in 2015, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) is a new kind of philanthropy that’s leveraging technology to help solve some of the world’s toughest challenges — from eradicating disease, to improving education, to reforming the criminal justice system. Across three core Initiative focus areas of Science, Education, and Justice & Opportunity, we’re pairing engineering with grant-making, impact investing, and policy and advocacy work to help build an inclusive, just and healthy future for everyone. For more information, please visit

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