Bill Gates Donates $50 Million To Alzheimer's Research

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The investment - a personal donation separate from the Bill and Melida Gates Foundation - will include $50 million to the Dementia Discovery Fund and $50 million to start-up companies focused on Alzheimer's research.

Gates announced the move on his blog, where he explained his personal reasons for joining the effort on tackling Alzheimer's disease.

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, speaks at the Bloomberg Global Business Forum in New York City, U.S., September 20.

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As usual, Bill Gates gets it - that the megatrend of population aging in many ways brought about by the 20th-century miracles of good and widespread hygiene, modern innovative medicines, and broad-based healthier lifestyles - must now in our 21st century be joined by what Mr. Gates himself calls the next "frontier where we can dramatically improve human life".

He said, "It'll take probably 10 years before new theories are tried enough times to give them a high chance of success". Today more people survive cancer than die from it and with sufficient investment in dementia research we know the same tremendous progress will be possible for people and families affected by dementia too. He plans to invest at least another $50 million into other startups that are working on "less mainstream" approaches, but these have not yet been identified. "It feels a lot like you're experiencing a gradual death of the person that you knew", he wrote.

The number of people suffering from Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia has increased in recent decades, taking an emotional and financial toll on patients and their families, Gates added. People should be able to enjoy their later years-and we need a breakthrough in Alzheimer's to fulfill that. He says the Gates Foundation might consider how to expand access in poorer countries when treatments are developed.

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