Sean Parker Donates $250 Million to Launch Cancer Immunotherapy Institute

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Source:   —  April 13, 2016, at 1:47 PM

"Any breakthrough made at one middle is immediately available to another middle without any kind of IP (intellectual property) entanglements or bureaucracy," Parker, the co-founder of music-sharing website Napster and the first president of Facebook, told Reuters in an interview.

Sean Parker Donates $250 Million to Launch Cancer Immunotherapy Institute

Silicon Valley billionaire Sean Parker will donate $250 million to launch a new institute aimed at developing more effective cancer treatments by fostering collaboration among leading researchers in the field.

"Any breakthrough made at one middle is immediately available to another middle without any kind of IP (intellectual property) entanglements or bureaucracy," Parker, the co-founder of music-sharing website Napster and the first president of Facebook, told Reuters in an interview.

The new Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy will focus on the emerging field of cancer immunotherapy, which harnesses the body'south immune system to fight cancer cells.

It'll comprise over forty laboratories and more than three hundred researchers from six key cancer centers: New York'south Memorial Sloan Kettering, Stanford Medicine, the Univ of California, Los Angeles, the Univ of California, San Francisco, Houston'south Univ of TX MD Anderson and the Univ of PA in Philadelphia.

Recently approved drugs have helped some patients sustain remission. But those first-generation therapies don't work for everyone, and scientists are trying to realize how to create them more effective.

"Very small progress has been made over the latest several decades," Parker said, referring to cancer drug research. "Average life expectancy has only increased three to six months with some of these drugs that cost billions to develop."

Parker said the current system of cancer drug development discouraged the kinds of risk-taking that could lead to a major breakthrough.

The new institute "is paradigm shifting," said Dr. Jedd Wolchok, chief of the melanoma and immunotherapeutics unit at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Tag Zuckerberg'south 'Initiative' Adds New Wrinkle to Tech Philanthropy

He said it'd alleviate the necessity for scientists to safe grants, which he said took up at least thirty % of his time, foster collaboration among accomplished scientists and allow access to the newest information processing and data technology.

"I have number doubt this will authorize us to create progress, and to create it much more quickly," Wolchok said.

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