Sean Parker, known as the co-founder of Napster and first president of Facebook, has just donated $250 million to create a new center for immunotherapy cancer treatment research.
The Parker Institute For Cancer will be a collaboration of over 40 laboratories and 300 researchers working together to cure the deadly disease. Medical universities such as Stanford Medicine and the University of California will also be participating.
As simple as a flu shot, the treatment causes cancer cells to self-destruct leaving patients – like beloved former President Jimmy Carter – cancer-free without having to undergo the trials of chemotherapy. After five years of research, the survival rate was 97% for patients who’d been in early stages of prostate cancer and 94% for patients facing a more aggressive form of the disease. That’s 20% better than average survival rates.
“We are at an inflection point in cancer research and now is the time to maximize immunotherapy’s unique potential to transform all cancers into manageable diseases, saving millions of lives,” Parker said in a statement. “We believe that the creation of a new funding and research model can overcome many of the obstacles that currently prevent research breakthroughs. Working closely with our scientists and more than 30 industry partners, the Parker Institute is positioned to broadly disseminate discoveries and, most importantly, more rapidly deliver treatments to patients.”
An early investor in Facebook, Parker started a philanthropic foundation for public health in 2015 with a $600 million contribution. The 36-year-old Silicon Valley mogul’s estimated worth currently stands at $3 billion.
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