PORTLAND -- Nike founder Phil Knight and his wife are pledging to kick-start a one billion dollar cancer research initiative at Oregon Health & Science University.

The couple gifted the university $100 million in 2008. Knight pledged $500 million toward OHSU's Knight Cancer Institute, but he said the pledge is contingent on OHSU raising another $500 million within the next two years.

OHSU president Joe Robertson said the university accepts Knight s challenge.

This is a transformative moment, he said in a press release. Not just for OHSU and for Oregon, but for the people who matter most this is about changing the lives of cancer patients around the world.

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