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Billionaire donates $2M for URMC geriatric research

Rochester Business Journal
September 16, 2013

Philanthropist Hansjorg Wyss has donated $2 million to support a University of Rochester Medical Center orthopedist surgeon’s geriatric fracture research.

Wyss’ gift establishes an endowed chair in his name and will support ongoing research conducted by Stephen Kates M.D., URMC officials said.

Kates is co-director of the Highland Hospital Geriatric Fracture Center and chief of URMC’s Oncology, Metabolic Bone and Geriatric Division. His practice and research largely are focused on care for the elderly. 

“Improving fracture care for older adults has been my personal mission for the past 10 years and this extraordinary gift will enable the University of Rochester to continue on a path that will make a significant impact on treatment and prevention at a national level,” Kates said.

Wyss, a Swiss native who lives in the United States, founded Synthes Inc., a medical device company acquired by Johnson & Johnson last year for $20.6 billion in cash. Forbes currently puts Wyss’ personal net worth at $8.7 billion.

In 2008, Wyss gave Harvard University $125 million to establish the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. He previously endowed medical research chairs at Clemson University, the University of Washington, the University of Mississippi, the University of Maryland, the University of South Alabama, and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
(c) 2013 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail


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