Indian steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal

New Delhi: Indian steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal donated 3.2 million pounds to Oxford Jenner Institute, the biggest academic vaccine centre in the entire world. Their COVID-19 vaccine is presently in the human trial stage.

According to Oxford, the “generous gift” from Mittal has secured their future of vaccine research at the university and will immensely help in critical vaccine development.

In honour of Mittal’s massive financial donation, a post that is currently held by Professor Adrian Hill, will from now be known as the “Lakshmi Mittal and Family Professorship of Vaccinology.”

Commenting on the honour of renaming the professorship, Mittal said: “This year has been a wake-up call to the world to be better prepared for pandemics, which, as we have all experienced, can cause massive social and economic disruption. Having always had a keen interest in healthcare, like many I was following with great interest the work on potential vaccines and treatments for Covid-19.”

“After a fascinating conversation with Professor Hill, my family and I concluded that the work he and his team are doing is not only extraordinary but essential, not just for this current crisis but for other challenges we may face in the future. The importance of dedicated and ongoing research in this field cannot be overestimated and we are delighted to be supporting this vaccinology professorship at Oxford,” Mittal added.

The Oxford Jenner Institute is a leading university for development of vaccines during pathogen outbreaks and had first started developing vaccines during the Ebola outbreak in 2014.

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