In 2010, JK Rowling donated £10m to establish the Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic at the University of Edinburgh. Named after her mother, who passed away due to "complications related to multiple sclerosis (MS)", the facility studies and researches these conditions, intending to bring "more clinical studies and trials to patients" as BBC reports. In light of this, JK Rowling has donated £15.3m to the Neurology Clinic, which the University of Edinburgh hopes "will create a global legacy that will have a lasting effect on patients and their families."
The clinic also provides "specialist and patient-centred care for people awaiting diagnosis and living with neurodegenerative conditions," as described on the facility's site. This allows patients to participate in medical studies and trials relating to conditions like MS, motor neurone disease (MND), early-onset dementia and Parkinson's disease.
Conducted in partnership with the NHS, the clinic aims "to improve patients' lives through research: translating laboratory findings into clinical trials and ultimately, new therapies," as NHS Lothian notes.
Rowling's first donation helped the clinic find its feet and assured it's place at the University of Edinburgh to become "a purpose-built facility" for research into neurological disorders. "I have supported research into this cause and treatment of multiple sclerosis for many years now, but when I first saw the proposal for this clinic, I knew that I had found a project more exciting, more innovative, and, I believe, more likely to succeed in unravelling the mysteries of MS than any other I had read about or been asked to fund," Rowling said in 2010 via the Independent.
Her most recent donation allows this research to continue, and also supports the availability of treatments for patients. "When the Anne Rowling Clinic was first founded, none of us could have predicted the incredible progress that would be made in the field of regenerative neurology, with the clinic leading the change," Rowling said in a statement published on the clinic's site.
"It's a matter of great pride for me that the clinic has combined these lofty ambitions with practical, on the ground support and care for people with MS, regardless of stage and type; I've heard at first-hand what a difference this support can make."
"I am confident that the combination of clinical research and practical support delivered by Professor Siddharthan Chandran and his exemplary team will create a definitive step-change for people with MS and associated conditions."
Professor Chandran, who is the director of the clinic, shared his gratitude towards Rowling's donation: "This incredibly far-sighted and generous donation will unlock the potential of personalised medicine for people with MS in Scotland and further afield."
The University's Principal and Vice Chancellor, Professor Peter Mathieson, was equally as thankful. "We are immensely honoured that JK Rowling has chosen to continue her support for the Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic," he said. "This inspiring donation will fund a whole new generation of researchers who are focused on discovering and delivering better treatments and therapies for patients."
Like Rowling, you can also donate to help the clinic fund research and treatment options. As their site reads, a donation of £10 "could provide a set of blood tests for a research participant," and a donation of £50 "could enable a research nurse to travel to a rural clinic, to meet people living with neurological conditions."
However much is donated, the money raised goes towards "helping researchers to understand the causes of degenerative conditions of the brain, how they progress, and to develop treatments and improve quality of life for people affected," as the site reads.