Research conducted by scientists at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel and the University of Southern California.

Beverly Hills, CA (PRWEB) August 10, 2010 – The Winnick Foundation was part of a consortium of private philanthropies, universities and federal agencies supporting research that has led to a new discovery that may lead to earlier diagnosis, intervention and monitoring of Alzheimer’s disease. The occurrence of Alzheimer’s disease is becoming more prevalent worldwide as the baby-boom generation ages, but there is presently no conclusive, non-invasive way to diagnose it.

The research was conducted by a team of scientists at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in collaboration with colleagues from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel and the University of Southern California. The team’s findings were presented on July 13 at the International Conference on Alzheimer’s Disease in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Said Gary Winnick, founder and CEO of Pacific Capital Group: “This research brought together some of the finest talents in medicine from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, and the University of Southern California. My family is pleased to be part of that funding group and we all hope that this breakthrough will greatly simplify and speed up early detection of this devastating disease that affects so many millions around the world.”

The scientific team discovered that the same nerve-cell damaging plaque that accumulates in the brain with Alzheimer’s also builds up in the retinas of the eyes. The team has both confirmed this phenomenon in humans and is now perfecting early detection techniques using non-invasive optical imaging procedures in tests with live laboratory mice. The breakthrough suggests the possibility of monitoring Alzheimer’s disease in humans through a similar, simple retinal imaging approach.

Added Gary Winnick: “Earlier studies have suggested that changes in the brain brought in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease may begin years or even decades before symptoms occur. The results of this new finding suggests that doctors may finally be able to provide earlier, reliable detection and begin in earnest to develop effective remedies for this debilitating disease.”

About the Winnick Family Foundation
The Winnick Family Foundation encourages project-specific programs but also selectively supports capital campaigns and unrestricted gifts to grantee organizations. There is a preference for projects in Los Angeles and New York – or those having an international component.

Foundation naming grants include:

  • Winnick Family Clinical Research Institute at Cedars Sinai Hospital
  • Winnick House and Arnold S. Winnick Student Center at the C.W. Post campus of Long Island University
  • Winnick International Conference Center at the Simon Wiesenthal Center / Jerusalem
  • Winnick Children’s Zoo in Los Angeles
  • Winnick Faculty Scholar at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University
  • Winnick Hall at the Skirball Cultural Center
  • Arnold & Blanche Winnick Popular Library and Karen Winnick Children’s Gallery at the Los Angeles Central Library
  • Winnick Hillel House at Syracuse University
  • Winnick Board Room at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City
  • Winnick Winners Mentoring Program for the Los Angeles Unified School District
  • Winnick Fellows at UCLA School of Medicine
  • Winnick Gallery at Yeshiva University Museum, Center for Jewish History

Karen and Gary Winnick and the Foundation have endowed university and high school literacy and scholarship programs at Brown University, at Mrs. Winnick’s alma mater Syracuse University, and at Gary Winnick’s alma mater, Long Island University.

They have also funded the transformation of the on-campus C.W. Post mansion administrative center – renamed Winnick House – as well as the main cafeteria which is now named in honor of Mr. Winnick’s late father.

In California, the Foundation has supported educational programs at the California Science Center, the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, KOREH L.A., the Los Angeles Zoo, L.A.’s Best Afterschool Program, the Wonder of Reading, the Fulfillment Fund and Noah’s Ark at the Skirball Center.

Among the many other Foundation grantees are the Special Olympics, The Center for Jewish History, Children’s Scholarship Fund, Partnership for Better Schools, Teach for America, The Gettysburg Foundation, The National Parks Foundation, Best Friends Animal Society, The Los Angeles Police Foundation, Shoah Foundation, and the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard University.

The Foundation also supports charities operating outside the United States, including the International Medical Corps, Flora and Fauna, World Wildlife Fund, the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, the Israel Museum, the Israel Philharmonic, the Jerusalem Zoo, Heifer International and the Bloomfield Science Museum at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. For more information on the Foundation and its work, visit on the Web.

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