U.Va. receives $1M gift for COVID-19 research fund
The Manning Fund for COVID-19 Research was funded by Charlottesville businessman and investor Paul Manning
The University of Virginia announced Tuesday it has received a $1 million commitment from Charlottesville-area businessman and investor Paul Manning to establish The Manning Fund for COVID-19 Research, which will support the university’s efforts to develop COVID-19-related research projects.
“The Manning Fund for COVID-19 Research is entrepreneurial, agile and will have an immediate impact,” U.Va. President Jim Ryan said in a statement. “The generosity of the Manning family is perfectly timed and it’s going to help us help others get past this crisis. I am deeply grateful.”
“U.Va. researchers are already working on some of the most important issues of our day,” Manning said in a statement. “I hope this fund promotes bold, innovative research applications with a frontline impact that can help mitigate the virus and its broader effects on our world.”
The fund will be used for research on testing, therapies, vaccines and reopening strategies, Melur K. “Ram” Ramasubramanian, U.Va.’s vice president for research, said in a statement.
“The intent of this fund is to support practically oriented research on COVID-19-related topics that can be acted upon quickly or have commercialization potential,” Ramasubramanian said in a statement.
The fund will be administered through the offices of the university’s executive vice president and provost and the vice president for research. One-year grants of up to $100,000 per project will be awarded to COVID-19-related projects. Submissions are due by May 15, and applicants will receive a response within two weeks.
Applicants from the U.Va. academic community must pitch ideas that aid in diagnosis or treatment of the disease through new medical devices, biomarkers for diagnostics, therapeutic targets and agents, new clinical adoption of existing tools or innovative tools for reopening businesses. It’s anticipated that most projects will result in new intellectual property, commercial partnerships or startups.
Manning founded Charlottesville-based private equity firm PBM Capital Group LLC in 2010, funding it with proceeds from the $800 million sale of his infant formula company, PBM Products LLC, which supplied store-brand infant formulas to national retailers. Manning has served on the U.Va. Strategic Planning Committee, the U.Va. Health Foundation, the U.Va. President’s Advisory Committee and the university’s Honor the Future Campaign Executive Committee.