Ilya Ivanovich Ivanov was the first person to attempt to create a human–ape hybrid. As early as 1910 he gave a presentation to the World Congress of Zoologists in Graz, Austria, in which he described the possibility of creating such a hybrid by artificial insemination. In 1924, while working at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, Ivanov obtained permission from the Institute's directors to use its experimental primate station in Kindia, French Guinea, for such an experiment. Ivanov attempted to gain backing for his project from the Soviet government. He dispatched letters to the People's Commissar on Education and Science Anatoliy Vasilievich Lunacharsky and to other officials. Ivanov's proposal finally sparked the interest of Nikolai Petrovich Gorbunov, the head of the Department of Scientific Institutions. In September 1925 Gorbunov helped allocate US$10,000 to the USSR Academy of Sciences (now the Russian Academy of Sciences) for Ivanov's human-ape hybridization experiments in Africa.