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Rick Klausner aims for $500 million fund in life sciences

Dr. Richard Klausner, the former director of the National Cancer Institute who most recently led the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's global health program, is looking to raise as much as $500 million for a new venture capital fund.

Dubbed The Column Group, the fund would be based in Seattle with the possibility of a branch office in the San Francisco Bay Area, Klausner said.

It plans to make investments in life science companies throughout the United States, but Klausner said he will "certainly" look at opportunities in the Seattle area.

"This is a fantastic time to try to capture the science going on in order to build companies," he said.

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