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Archive for the Retinitis pigmentosa Category

UCI Stem Cell Pioneer Poised to Launch Clinical Trial for RP Patients

Dr. Henry Klassen, a Foundation-funded researcherHenry Klassen, M.D., Ph.D., is only about a year from launching a clinical trial for a stem cell treatment to rescue vision in people with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and, potentially, other retinal diseases. At the Foundation’s recent Orange County Innovation Symposium, the University of California (UC), Irvine clinician-researcher reported that he and his colleagues are in the midst of final lab studies with patient-grade cells. Once finished, they’ll request authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to begin their human study.
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Hitting the Accelerator: A Man with RP Competes in the 2014 Paralympic Games

Mark Bathum makes a downhill run with his guide.Mark Bathum was in his late teens when he realized skiing wasn’t going to be a career option. Although he was enrolled in a ski school, where he’d proven himself a top junior racer a couple years prior, he was making so many mistakes on his runs, he didn’t have a chance of placing. And he didn’t know why. “Come race day,” he recalls, “I was getting lost on the course a lot.”
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When Research Offers More Than Just Hope

John and Pam CorneilleI’ve lost a lot of my sight to retinitis pigmentosa, or RP, and as Dr. Edwin Stone is conducting exciting stem cell research focused on the disease, I began the process of scheduling an appointment with him last summer. Dr. Stone’s home base is the University of Iowa, which is just a two-and-a-half-hour drive from my house in Illinois. When an appointment date was finally offered, I found it a little odd that it was for New Year’s Eve, but I was eager to go, so I said yes.
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An FFB Board Member’s Perspective on Her Experience with Acupuncture

Moira Shea, an FFB board member who says she has benefited from acupuncture therapy, at home with her guide dog, Finnegan.A few weeks ago, the Foundation’s chief research officer, Dr. Steve Rose, authored a post about acupuncture that generated significant interest from readers at Eye on the Cure and on FFB’s Facebook page. The impetus for his post was a feasibility study at Johns Hopkins University, in which Dr. Ava Bittner, O.D., Ph.D., found that eight of 12 people treated with acupuncture had, as Dr. Bittner reported, “significant vision improvements in night vision, dark adaptation and/or visual field.”
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The Challenge

A Series on How People Affected by Retinal Diseases Adjust to Continual Vision Loss

John Corneille – Out of the Closet

John Corneille and his wife, Pam, get ready to hit the road on their tandem bike.Seven years ago, John Corneille’s world was crumbling. “I almost hit rock bottom,” the 54-year-old recalls. He’d recently left his law firm, his marriage was in jeopardy, and he could no longer hide that he had retinitis pigmentosa. “It was bad enough where I had to check myself into a school for the blind, in Chicago. I stayed there, from January to May.”
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Is Acupuncture a Beneficial Treatment for Retinitis Pigmentosa?

acupuncture for eyesWe at the Foundation Fighting Blindness have been receiving questions about acupuncture for the treatment of retinitis pigmentosa (RP), namely because of feasibility research conducted by Ava Bittner, O.D., Ph.D., at Johns Hopkins University, in collaboration with Andy Rosenfarb, N.D., L.Ac, who specializes in acupuncture and ophthalmic Chinese medicine. Their project was funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
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Urine Test Helps Diagnose RP Caused by DHDDS Mutations

Microscope and lab equipmentResearchers from the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute of the University of Miami and Duke University are developing a urine test to help determine if the cause of autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (arRP) in Ashkenazi Jews is mutations in the gene DHDDS. While it isn’t a substitute for a diagnosis through genetic testing, the urine test can verify that a given DHDDS mutation is, in fact, causing RP. (Some mutations might be benign.) It can also be used to identify people who are unaffected carriers of DHDDS-associated arRP. Results of the researchers’ related investigation were published in the Journal of Lipid Research.
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New Imaging Technique May Be Game-Changer for RP Clinical Trials

Image of an eyeFoundation-funded researchers are developing an innovative approach that would more quickly, accurately and objectively measure the ability of a therapy to slow or halt the progress of retinitis pigmentosa (RP). Known as EZ Width, it holds potential for reducing the time, cost and number of patients needed to determine if a therapy is working in a clinical trial.
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The Challenge

A Series on How People Affected by Retinal Diseases Adjust to Continual Vision Loss

Alice Bartlett – Back on That Horse

His name is Battle. He’s an Arabian, stands more than 15 hands (or 5 feet) tall and weighs 1,000 pounds. He’s been with Alice Bartlett since his birth 26 years ago, and she’s been riding him since he was 2.

Alice, by the way, is legally blind.
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The Foundation’s Center Grants Foster Essential Retinal Research Collaborations

Question: How many researchers does it take to develop a retinal-disease treatment? (No, this isn’t a politically incorrect joke.) The answer is near the end of this article, but no looking ahead!
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