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Penn Medicine has received one of its largest donations of the year in the midst of the holiday season.

The University announced on Monday that an anonymous donor had given a $16.3-million gift to fund a new neuroscience initiative.

The donation is the single-largest gift to support neuroscience research and practice in Penn Medicine’s history. Penn Medicine is the umbrella organization created in 2001 to oversee the University’s Health System and the Perelman School of Medicine.

The new Neuroscience of Behavior Initiative will focus primarily on research in three different areas, according to a press release: addiction, depressive disorders and neurodegenerative diseases.

“Prevention, treatment, management and rehabilitation of these conditions are central to improving health care for millions of people,” Medical School professor Brian Strom, who will lead the initiative, said in a statement. “This gift represents an enormous opportunity and will enable us to apply ideas emerging in the study of effective interventions and treatments in a way that will benefit not only our patients, but the community as well.”

Penn Medicine expects the anonymous donor to continue making a “long-term investment” in the initiative for years to come, according to the press release.

In May, Penn Medicine received a $225-million gift from Raymond and Ruth Perelman to the Medical School — the largest donation in the University’s history.

Medical School Dean Larry Jameson said Monday’s gift will emphasize interdisciplinary research in particular.

“Today, Penn is one of the few places in the world with the depth of expertise and experience to launch such a comprehensive, scientifically rigorous and outcomes-oriented program,” Jameson said in a statement. “This transformative gift will allow us to innovate in areas of medicine that impact millions of patients directly and society as a whole.”


Penn Med to be renamed after record $225M gift

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