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Dr. Patrice Matchaba Appointed as Chief Executive Officer of the Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute

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Cambridge, Mass., USA (28 May 2024) — The Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute (Gates MRI) today announced the appointment of Patrice Matchaba, MD, as Chief Executive Officer (CEO), starting June 10, 2024. He succeeds the current CEO, Emilio Emini, PhD, who recently announced his retirement, effective on June 30, 2024.

Dr. Matchaba began his career as a physician in South Africa before working for more than two decades in the pharmaceutical industry. In his time with Novartis Global Pharmaceuticals in the US and Switzerland, Dr. Matchaba gained expertise in drug development, global product registration, and market access. Prior to joining the institute, his most recent roles were President of Novartis’ U.S. Foundation and Novartis Group Head of Global Health.

Before joining Novartis, Dr. Matchaba was a Senior Research Scientist at the Cochrane Centre based at the South African Medical Research Centre in Cape Town, which he joined after practicing as an obstetrician and gynecologist in Durban. He also worked as a medical doctor in the mines of Botswana for three years, where he saw the ravages of tuberculosis (TB) firsthand. He was born in Zimbabwe and is a citizen of South Africa and the US.

“After an extensive global search, we are delighted to announce that Dr. Matchaba will lead the Gates MRI,” said Trevor Mundel, Board Chair of the Gates MRI and President, Global Health, of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “Dr. Matchaba has seen every aspect of global health drug development in his 23 years at Novartis, most notably in his work to build sustainable partnerships to treat sickle-cell disease in Africa and Chagas disease in South America. His extensive experience in global health will help the Gates MRI as it progresses candidate therapeutics, supplements, and vaccines through clinical development and ultimately, into manufacturing and distribution.”

“Dr. Matchaba’s experience in harnessing the power of medical innovation—from research through to distribution and patient access—will serve us well,” said Dr. Emini. “As we continue the clinical studies on potential interventions to fight the diseases that disproportionately impact low- and middle-income countries, we need continued leadership that can leverage the capabilities of current partners while building new collaboration models.”

“Tuberculosis, malaria, diarrheal diseases, and maternal and child health are public health challenges that impact communities in low- and middle-income countries,” said Dr. Matchaba. “The Gates MRI was founded to help address these intractable concerns and to save lives. I look forward to joining with new colleagues and research partners in this critically important work.”

In March of this year, the Gates MRI launched a Phase 3 clinical trial to assess the efficacy of the M72/AS01E tuberculosis vaccine candidate. The institute is conducting a number of additional clinical trials, evaluating potential therapeutics, vaccine candidates, and a probiotic candidate to reduce the burden of illness in low- and middle-income countries globally.

The Gates MRI is an affiliate of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

About the Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute (Gates MRI)
The Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute is a non-profit medical research organization dedicated to the development and effective use of novel biomedical interventions addressing substantial global health concerns, for which investment incentives are limited, including malaria, tuberculosis, enteric and diarrheal diseases, and diseases that impact maternal, newborn, and child health. For further information please visit