Real estate and publishing mogul Mortimer Zuckerman has pledged $200 million to a new Columbia University program devoted to treating Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other brain disorders.
The funds would endow a Mind Brain Behavior Institute “to support interdisciplinary neuroscience research and discovery by scholars across the University,” according to a press release from Columbia University’s Office of Communications and Public Affairs.
Zuckerman said he was inspired to make the contribution after meeting Nobel medicine laureate Eric Kandel, one of the institute’s co-directors. He “convinced me that we stand at the edge of a new era of understanding of the human mind,” he explained. “I’m just thrilled to be part of this bold and ambitious research initiative.”
The lofty donation will create an endowment for the neuroscience center, which is set to open on Columbia’s new Manhattanville campus in 2016. The center will have 65 faculty members representing a range of disciplines and will be officially known as the Mortimer B. Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute.
Zuckerman announced the gift alongside Mayor Bloomberg and Columbia President Lee Bollinger. “It really will put us at the forefront of the knowledge-based community around the world,” revealed Bloomberg. “It is going to contribute to the conquest of neurological disorders.”