The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has committed $25 million to Washington State University toward the construction of a research building that will become the centerpiece in the new School for Global Animal Health. The new facility will provide modern research space on the Pullman campus to support global animal health research. WSU is recognized internationally for research focused on preventing transmission of animal pathogens. “You cannot identify a healthy human population in which the animals are not also healthy,” says Warwick Bayly, dean of WSU’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

“Humans are inextricably linked to their animals. Solving the challenge of global poverty is not possible without a focus on animals.”

The school will focus on three interrelated approaches to global animal and public health: vaccine development and deployment, emerging pathogen and disease detection, and control of disease transmission from animals to humans.

The $35 million state-of-the-art infectious disease research facility will provide approximately 20,000 square feet of laboratories, office space, and meeting rooms for 12 to 15 research scientists and their support staff and graduate students. The Gates Foundation gift represents the largest single private financial commitment in WSU history. “The values of WSU’s School for Global Animal Health are aligned with the mission of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which is guided by the belief that every life has equal value and that all people should be allowed to lead healthy, productive lives,” says WSU president Elson Floyd.