We know it’s fun to spend your bitcoins on things like pizza or online games, but would you part with some of it to do something good for humanity?
Scientist Isaac Yonemato is asking for Bitcoin donations to help him find a cure for cancer. As causes go, it’s hard to get much nobler.
Yonemato wants to complete research into a new cancer-fighting compound called 9DS, which has the potential to fight kidney cancer, skin cancer, and some forms of breast cancer. The effort is called Project Marilyn, which he explains here:
While Bitcoin is a means to fund the research, the connection between the project and the digital currency goes deeper. Yonemato sees Bitcoin’s open-source protocol as a model for his scientific research.
“What we’re doing differently from most preclinical research is that we’re going to open source all of our work, and we’re going to release whatever molecules we make without patents," Yonemato told CoinDesk.com. "Part of this is because without licensing use of the compound it will be more accessible to all parts of the world,."
Once Yonemato is able to test one variant of 9DS, the research team will officially name the compound “Satoshimycin" in honor of Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonym used by the creator of Bitcoin.
About 1.5 bitcoins of the 10-bitcoin goal have been raised so far. If the project fails to gain enough revenue, the bitcoins donated will be returned. Donating can also get you prizes like pins, t-shirts, and ties.
The page will update periodically keeping track of the amount donated. Bitcoin is still new, so you're probably wondering if your donation would be tax deductible. According to the Project Marilyn FAQ page, that's not yet clear.