Bill Gates’ Massive $100 Million Donation To Fight Alzheimer’s Marks A Big First
Once again, Bill Gates is putting his money where his mouth is — but this time, the funds are coming from his own bank account.
The Microsoft co-founder announced Nov. 13 he’s personally donating $100 million toward fighting Alzheimer’s disease. The gift does not involve efforts through his foundation, which has primarily focused on dire global health issues facing the developing world, such as HIV/AIDS and malaria.
In fact, Gates’ gift is his first major one toward fighting a noncommunicable disease, CNN reported.
“It’s a huge problem, a growing problem, and the scale of the tragedy — even for the people who stay alive — is very high,” Gates explained to Reuters. The billionaire noted in a blog post that Alzheimer’s disease is the only top 10 cause of death in the U.S. without any significant treatment.
Right now, there’s no cure; physicians can only ease symptoms as the condition worsens.
Alzheimer’s — a progressive form of dementia that destroys memory and other mental functions — affects over 5 million people in the U.S. according to the Alzheimer’s Association. That figure could reach 16 million by 2050.
“It’s very tough,” Gates said of the disease’s emotional toll on patients and their families. “It’s like a gradual death in terms of the person that you knew.”
The $100 million dollar donation will be separated into two commitments: $50 million will go toward start-up ventures conducting Alzheimer’s research while another $50 million will go toward the Dementia Discovery Fund, a venture capital program that unites government and private-sector efforts that focus on medical breakthroughs.
In a video shared on his blog (see below) Gates pinpoints a few critical factors that will play roles in the coming decades. Continuing research is vital, of course. Nailing down a diagnostic that can show the disease’s progression — like a simple blood test — could be a game-changer as well. Researchers must also try lots of theories on their road to new discoveries, make drug trial processes faster, and continue to collect data and make it accessible in a common form, Gates said.
Gates is hopeful positive change is on the horizon though.
“We have much better tools, we have more scientists,” he explained. “We need a lot of ideas here, to give us the highest chance that will lead to an Alzheimer’s cure.”
Read more about Gates’ fight against Alzheimer’s disease on his blog.
Share photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
9 Nonthreatening Leadership Strategies For Women In this fast-paced business world, female leaders need to make sure they’re not perceived as pushy, aggressive, or competent.
Startling Photos Taken By First Responders To The Puerto Rico Hurricane About 60% of the island is still without power.
Penniless Man Sold A 175-Year-Old Navajo Blanket For $1.5 Million He had been living on $200 a month.
This Dictionary's Word Of The Year Is An Obvious Dig At The Trump Family When pressed on camera earlier this year, Ivanka didn’t know the definition.
Americans Spend The Most On Health Care But Lag Behind In Life Expectancy Japan has the longest life expectancy.
CNN Promotes Its #FactsFirst Campaign By Taking A Shot At Trump On Twitter Polls show the country trusts CNN over Trump.
8 Gaslighting Techniques To Use At Work Gaslighting at work is all the rage. How can you use this powerful psychological tactic to your own advantage?
One Man's Tour Of Cheesecake Factory's 'Postmodern Design Hellscape' The restaurant’s decor resembles a spastic, multigenre interior design fever dream.
Conservatives Are Mad At Starbucks Again For Its Holiday-Themed Cup Some conservatives believe those hands on the cup belong to lesbians, and they aren’t happy.