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$2 million prize announced for blindness cure

The Baltimore Sun, October 22, 2012

Singer Art Garfunkel, a real estate magnate and an investor are putting $2 million in gold bullion on the line to inspire researchers to cure blindness by 2020, establishing through Johns Hopkins Medicine one of the world's largest prizes for a scientific advancement. Dr. Peter McDonnell, director and ophthalmology professor at the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins, said the time between the announcement and the day the prize will be awarded is exactly the same period, 2,978 days, from President John F. Kennedy's challenge to put a man on the moon and Neil Armstrong's first steps on its surface. "This is our generation's moonshot," McDonnell said. The money, which is nearly double the prizes awarded to the Nobel laureates this year, is expected to grow.