Paul Allen puts $300M in brain institute expansion

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SEATTLE (AP) -- Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen is putting $300 million into expanding the work of the brain science institute he founded.

The financial commitment announced Wednesday is part of a 10-year plan to tackle the most complex questions in brain science.

The new money increases Allen's total commitment to the institute to half a billion dollars.

The expansion of the institute's work will include efforts to answer questions like "How does the brain store, encode and process information?"

The institute plans to double its staff to 350 employees over the next four years.

Allen has given more than a billion dollars to various nonprofits over the past 20 years.

He left Microsoft Corp. in 1983, and has pursued many interests -- from sports to a science fiction museum -- since then.