BILLIONAIRE Bill Gates will personally invest $US50 million ($66 million) to help researchers find a cure for Alzheimer’s disease.
Mr Gates announced the investment on his blog on Monday, writing that he wanted to “support the brilliant minds doing this work”.
“As a first step, I’ve invested $50 million in the Dementia Discovery Fund – a private fund working to diversify the clinical pipeline and identify new targets for treatment,” he said.
He explained the fund worked alongside major pharmaceutical companies by complementing their work, supporting startups exploring less mainstream approaches to treating dementia.
“I believe we are at a turning point in Alzheimer’s research and development,” Mr Gates said.
“This is a frontier where we can dramatically improve human life.
“It’s a miracle that people are living so much longer, but longer life expectancies alone are not enough. People should be able to enjoy their later years—and we need a breakthrough in Alzheimer’s to fulfill that.
I’m excited to join the fight and can’t wait to see what happens next.”
The philanthropist and the Microsoft co-founder said he first became interested in Alzheimer’s because of its emotional and economic costs.
“It’s a terrible disease that devastates both those who have it and their loved ones,” he said.
“This is something I know a lot about, because men in my family have suffered from Alzheimer’s. I know how awful it is to watch people you love struggle as the disease robs them of their mental capacity, and there is nothing you can do about it. It feels a lot like you’re experiencing a gradual death of the person that you knew.”