Mark Zuckerberg's Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is joining the struggle against the . On Friday the Facebook CEO and his wife, Priscilla Chan, co-founder of the initiative, appeared on CBS This Morning to announce that their foundation will be donating $25 million to the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, to help speed development of virus treatments.
Announced earlier this month, the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator was created by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in partnership with MasterCard and UK-based medical foundation Wellcome.
The Gates Foundation and Wellcome each pledged $50 million toward the initial funding of the accelerator, with MasterCard contributing $25 million.
Chan told CBS This Morning that the goal of the group was to "screen all the drugs that we know have potential effects against coronavirus," and she added that "figuring out drugs is always expensive, but philanthropy can do a role in kickstarting" the process.
"Often a drug can be helpful against multiple diseases," Zuckerberg said. "So you can basically take all those drugs that have already been screened as safe and test them to see if they might also have a positive impact for either preventing the coronavirus or reducing the symptoms (of the disease) and making it less damaging."
The accelerator is just one of the ways executives from major tech companies are helping fight the pandemic.
As of press time, there've been nearly 560,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus around the world, with more than 86,000 cases in the United States, according to tracking by Johns Hopkins University. Over 25,000 people have died as a result of the pandemic.
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