MRC Technology – supporting vital work with an unusual donation

Already in regular contact with MMV for issues related to our collaborative discovery projects, Medical Research Council Technology (MRCT) contacted MMV for a slightly more unusual request back in Dec 2010. “Could we donate the cost of an Apple iPad to MMV’s mission to develop and deliver new medicines to treat malaria?” was the question; the response, a resounding yes from MMV. But what was the reason for this unusual request? Read the interview with Jonathan McGee. Head of Marketing & Communications at MRC Technology to find out.

1. What is the role of the Medical Research Council, Technology?

MRC Technology (MRCT) works with scientists in MRC-funded units and collaborating organizations to create innovations in healthcare, such as new medicines or medical technology. We combine technology transfer, small molecule drug discovery and therapeutic antibody functions in order to convert knowledge into treatment.

2. Why the donation of the cost of an Apple iPad?

MRCT deals with many scientific collaborators and organizations and keeping track of them is really important, that way we can make sure we only contact them with relevant information. We wanted to wish all our partners and collaborators season’s greetings while also ensuring their contact details were kept up-to-date. We appreciate that everyone has busy lives and so as a thank you for taking the time to keep us updated we offered a prize – a gadget lovers’ dream, an Apple iPad. But to also show the spirit of our company’s mission – to improve human healthcare – we decided to donate an equivalent sum to a charity working to help human health.

3. Why did you choose Medicines for Malaria Venture?

This is the first time that we have decided to hold a prize draw for this purpose and malaria is one of the neglected diseases that our company has a long history of tackling. Malaria therapeutics have traditionally not been an area of focus for industry so we wanted to support an organization aiming to fill the gap and tackle this killer disease. We currently have several collaborative projects with MMV and so they were an obvious choice. We hope to continue supporting such vital work.