A leading charity has announced it will increase spending on medical research by 60% to £4bn over the next five years.
The Wellcome Trust, which is already at the forefront of human genetics research, said the money will be used to expand its efforts to understand the genetic basis of common diseases such as cancer, diabetes and psychiatric illness.
Major projects such as the new UK Centre for Medical Research and Innovation in London and the Health Innovation Challenge Fund will benefit from the increased funding.
The charity said it will continue to spend most of its money in the UK, but will also invest in Africa’s biomedical research infrastructure.
The extra funding comes after the “remarkable” performance of investments, the trust has said.
Established in 1936 and with an endowment of around £13bn, the trust is the UK’s largest non-governmental source of funds for biomedical research.
Dr Mark Walport, director of the Wellcome Trust, said: “There are huge opportunities to advance medical research to improve health and wellbeing.
“New technologies and approaches are revealing the causes of many major human diseases, providing new opportunities for prevention and treatment.
“This proposed extra spend will enable us to fund important research aimed at tackling some of the world’s major diseases.”
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