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JK Rowling Donates $15M To Build MS Clinic


Aug. 31 2010, Published 10:19 a.m. ET

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Harry Potter author JK Rowling has donated $15 million to the University Of Edinburgh in Scotland to set-up a multiple sclerosis clinic, has learned.

The billionaire writer - whose mother Anne had the disease and died at only  45 – wants to attract the top researchers from around the world to the facility to help and try and find a cure for MS. The Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic will aim to put patients at the heart of the research process.

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Rowling stepped down as patron of MS Society Scotland last year saying the charity was split by internal conflict.  She said: “I cannot think of anything more important, or of more lasting value, than to help the university attract world-class minds in the field of neuroregeneration, to build on its long and illustrious history of medical research and, ultimately, to seek a cure for a very Scottish disease.

“We can only find improved treatments if we can truly understand diseases and the biological processes behind them”

“I have just turned 45, the age at which my mother, Anne, died of complications related to her MS.

“I know that she would rather have had her name on this clinic than on any statue, flower garden or commemorative plaque, so this donation is on her behalf, too; and in gratitude for everything she gave me in her far-too-short life.”

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Academics will work closely with researchers studying neurodegenerative disorders already based at the university, as well as training a new generation of researchers.

Professor Charles ffrench-Constant, the centre's co-director, said: “The Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic will enable us to carry out studies that can inform laboratory research and, in turn, this knowledge can be translated back into treatments for patients."

The final installment of the Harry Potter series Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I hits theaters on November 19 with Part II  due out in 2011.


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