- Brii Biosciences will provide funding and expertise in infectious disease treatment modalities for projects in development in Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center and other Columbia Laboratories –
DURHAM, North Carolina, United States, and BEIJING, China - March 11, 2020 – Brii Biosciences (“Brii Bio”) and Columbia University have entered into a memorandum of understanding through which Brii Bio will provide funding to support research to be conducted by investigators at the university and led by David Ho, M.D., founding scientific director of the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center and professor of medicine at the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. Brii Bio’s funding to Columbia comes in the form of an unrestricted grant to facilitate creating a framework for the formation of strategic collaborations in areas of complementary expertise and resources.
The funding is expected to support work that focuses on finding solutions to the treatment, prevention and diagnosis of COVID-19 and other coronaviruses. Dr. Ho will serve as Principal Investigator. At the same time, Columbia and Brii Bio intend to work together to create a joint collaboration model to enable both parties to utilize their respective R&D, expertise and other in-kind contributions to advance the effort.
“As an international university with a global network of research collaborators, clinicians and patient-care capabilities, Columbia feels a special obligation to focus on public health threats such as coronaviruses, and our research teams are working now to identify potential antiviral drugs and antibodies against COVID-19,” said Dr. Ho. “Through this generous funding from Brii Bio, we look forward to building on our current research to create a truly holistic approach to diagnosis, treatment and prevention.”
Columbia intends to disseminate the results of the project’s research as part of the university’s mission to engage in the free scholarly exchange of information.
“As a company dedicated to improving public health in China and globally, we know that threats such as coronaviruses can be met only if governments, academic institutions and private entities such as Brii Bio work together,” said Zhi Hong, Ph.D., CEO of Brii Bio. “Our support for Columbia offers meaningful assistance in dealing with the current public health crisis, and we are excited to be exploring a new collaboration model for addressing future public health challenges.”