6 Sep 2012

$5m donated to Otago University for heart research

9:47 pm on 6 September 2012

A Christchurch-based research programme, which is making breakthroughs in understanding and treating heart conditions, has received a $5 million anonymous donation.

The Christchurch Heart Institute is part of the University of Otago's School of Medicine, and a spokesperson says it is one of the largest donations it has received from an individual, and the benefactor is a successful New Zealander.

The donation was made as part of an appeal the university is holding to raise money for four research and teaching projects carried out in Christchurch.

The university's Christchurch Dean, Professor Peter Joyce, say the $5 million will help with the institute's world-leading work discovering and trialling treatments for heart disease.

Dr Joyce says the institute has developed a blood test to diagnose and monitor heart failure, saving the lives of thousands of people each year.

The university is also seeking money for The Centre for Free Radical Research fund, The Carrell-Espiner Fellowships fund and The Simulation Centre fund.