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Bill Gates launches $12M challenge for universal flu vaccine

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Bill Gates launches $12m for flu research before next pandemicBillionaire Bill Gates has announced a $12 million Grand Challenge to fund research of universal flu vaccines in preparation for the next flu pandemic.

Gates, who founded Microsoft, announced at the New England Journal of Medicine's annual Shattuck Lecture in Boston that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in partnership with Google co-founder Larry Page and his wife, Lucy, will provide the seed money.

"The goal is to encourage bold thinking by the world's best scientists across disciplines, including those new to the field," Gates told attendees.

In the pilot phase, individual grants will range from $250,000 to $2 million over two years, Gates told STAT editors and reporters before announcing the funding. An additional $10 million may be provided if project is promising in animal studies but that money is not part of this funding round.


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