As a multinational manufacturer of a diverse array of products, including health care products, 3M was on the front lines of providing essentials in response to COVID-19. They didn’t stop there. Here’s how 3M advanced the search for a cure by committing $5 million in grantmaking for COVID-19 research at top universities around the world.
Advance scientific information and tools to fight a global pandemic
Less than one month after the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic, 3M announced their commitment of $5 million of grantmaking for COVID-19 research. That included $3 million to institutions in Asia, Europe, and South America in partnership with GlobalGiving, and another $2 million in the United States.
At the time, no vaccine existed. American cities were just starting to adopt mask mandates, the science was unclear about what activities were riskiest, and few treatments had been tested. The idea of making a dent in this global challenge felt nearly impossible.
But 3M and other companies stepped up by pledging significant funding to COVID-19 research efforts around the world.
“It’s important that 3M holds true to its core values during this pandemic by supporting our communities and improving lives. Throughout this global crisis, we will continue to look for ways to help in the fight against COVID-19,” 3M Chairman and CEO Mike Roman said.
$5 million in grants for COVID-19 research at leading institutions around the world
As a science-based company that prides itself on research, 3M wanted to support the scientists and doctors seeking critical knowledge about the virus.
3M worked in partnership with GlobalGiving to identify and recommend grant recipients for a wide range of research projects from studying whether people who contract COVID-19 experience long-term immunity to developing a nasal vaccine and testing existing drugs that might be effective against the new disease. GlobalGiving identified universities and education institutions around the world focused on this important work, and 3M provided funding for some of the projects they found most promising.
Faster vaccine and treatment research with the potential to save lives
Universities in Brazil, Chile, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Israel, Japan, and South Korea, along with the University of Minnesota near 3M’s headquarters, received the funding needed to take on vital new research. While much of the work is still underway, there’s exciting progress to report.
One research team at Imperial College is diving into a project focused on RNA extraction and detection for COVID-19 testing. They are developing a new method to prepare samples for testing using magnetic beads rather than electricity. It could be used to diagnose the disease in low- and middle-income countries where laboratory testing can be inaccessible.
The second group of researchers from Imperial College is looking at how inflammation contributes to the severity of COVID-19. They seek to understand the immune system response at a cellular and molecular level. They hope to determine whether two groups of drugs are effective at preventing symptoms from worsening.
“We’re honored to support these global researchers through our partnership with 3M, a company whose products have been critical to safety amid the pandemic,” Kristina Joss, Senior Director of Business Partnerships at GlobalGiving, said. “Grants for COVID-19 research around the world paves the way for the faster and more equitable path to recovery we all hope for.”
Looking to make an impact with grantmaking for COVID-19 research? Learn more about GlobalGiving’s grantmaking services.
Featured Photo: Science: our power to defeat COVID-19 by Asociacion Apadrina la Ciencia