How Dolly Parton helped fund Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine research
Veteran singer Dolly Parton had in April donated $1 million to coronavirus research at Vanderbilt University.
About seven months later, it has been revealed her donation helped in funding Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine, which emerged this week as the second coronavirus vaccine with an incredibly high success rate.
Parton's name has appeared in the preliminary report on the vaccine among other sponsors such as the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and Emory University.
Initially, she donated to Vanderbilt University Medical Centre in honour of her friend who is also a Vanderbilt professor of surgery, Dr Naji Abumrad.
According to data released this week by the Moderna company, the covid-19 vaccine is 94.5% effective against coronavirus.
Vaccinations would commence as soon as late December. However, they might be administered first to high-risk groups like the health care workers, people with underlying medical conditions and the elderly, Dr Anthony Fauci, the Head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases said.
COVID-19 cases have increased drastically since Dolly Parton made her donation in April. Back then, it was just about 200,000 reported cases against the over 11.2 million cases that have been reported presently.
She said in an April broadcast on NBC's 'Today' that her gift was first used toward research for interim COVI-19 treatments while the vaccine was being developed.
"I felt like this was the time for me to open my heart and my hand and try to help," she said in the 'Today' appearance.