A Las Vegas casino developer who’s battling a disease that’s causing him to lose his eyesight is giving the University of Iowa $25-million to help find a cure for blindness. The gift is coming from billionaire Steve Wynn. Dr. Edwin Stone, who heads the U-of-I’s research institute, says they have a different type of commitment in fighting this foe.
“We need to compete against blindness and not against each other and not against other institutions,” Dr. Stone says. A cure for some forms of blindness is within reach, according to Stone.
“What we want to do is reach out to other institutions all around the country and all around the world and work together to build this network of collaborative institutions,” Stone says, “focused on the fact it is simply unacceptable for a child to be born blind because she’s missing a gene that we can just put back in.”
The research facility in Iowa City will now carry Wynn’s name. The 25-million dollar gift is among the ten largest gifts ever received by the University of Iowa Foundation.