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Capital Campaign

$24-Million Donation to School of Public Health

9.29.14

Dean Julio Frenk (left), Ali Ülker (middle), and Gökhan S. Hotamisligil (right). Ülker was presented with a picture of HSPH’s founders: George Whipple, William Sedgwick, and Milton Rosenau.

Dean Julio Frenk (left), Ali Ülker (middle), and Gökhan S. Hotamisligil (right). Ülker was presented with a picture of HSPH’s founders: George Whipple, William Sedgwick, and Milton Rosenau.

Photograph by Emily Cuccarese/Harvard School of Public Health

The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health (HSPH) has received a $24-million gift from Turkish entrepreneur Murat Ülker of Istanbul to establish the Sabri Ülker Center for Nutrient, Genetic, and Metabolic Research. According to HSPH officials, the center will address chronic metabolic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

“With rates of chronic metabolic disorders skyrocketing across the globe, this transformational gift comes at a time of great need for resources to support our basic research,” Dean Julio Frenk said in a press relase. “The knowledge emerging from this line of scientific exploration has tremendous implications for efforts around the globe to prevent and treat problems like obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.”

The gift—which will fund work being led by Simmons professor of genetics and metabolism Gökhan S. Hotamisligil—honors the donor’s father, the late Sabri Ülker, who founded what is now Yıldız Holding, a multinational corporation based in Turkey. Officials said the $24-million donation will be used to support faculty and researchers, and to train students and young researchers using cutting-edge basic mechanistic science to explore nutrients and metabolism. A biennial international symposium will also be organized by the center. 

“We hope this contribution to science will benefit humanity greatly and we have every confidence in Professor Hotamisligil’s research and leadership as a world-renowned, preeminent scientist in the field of metabolic diseases,” said Ali Ülker, grandson of Sabri Ülker and vice chairman of the Yıldız Holding board of directors, in a press release.  

 

 

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