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Archive for the FFB on the Road Category

Sharing Stories and Taking Action

Eric FultonTestimonials—we love ’em. They give people a chance to say why they’re involved with the Foundation Fighting Blindness, what FFB means to them, and how they’re helping us raise awareness of retinal diseases and funds for research. So it only made sense to set up a video booth at VISIONS 2013, this year’s annual conference, and let people … well … tell their stories.
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Several New Stem Cell Clinical Trials Poised to Begin in Two to Three Years

Microscopic Stem CellsOne of the more exciting aspects of FFB’s recent annual conference, VISIONS 2013, was the news on the clinical development of several emerging stem cell therapies. The field has picked up a lot of steam, with many new human studies of stem-cell treatments anticipated to begin in 2014 and 2015.
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Update on Six Gene Therapy Clinical Trials Presented at VISIONS 2013

Dr Shannon BoyeWhether you’re a researcher or affected by a retinal disease, hearing the latest news from the clinical-trial front lines is a great perk of FFB’s annual conference. On the last day of VISIONS 2013, I had the privilege of moderating a compelling update on six gene-therapy clinical trials provided by Shannon Boye, Ph.D., a gene therapy developer at the University of Florida, and Michel Michaelides, M.D., a clinician-researcher at Moorfields Eye Hospital in the United Kingdom. All of these emerging treatments, given in recaps below, were made possible by Foundation funding.
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The Guide Dogs of VISIONS 2013

Image of a guide dogVISIONS conferences wouldn’t be the same without them, nor would they be possible, seeing as, each year, a good number of attendees depend on them to navigate the hallways and session rooms. We’re talking guide dogs, each and every one an object of admiration. As you know, however, you don’t pet a working dog . So we thought we’d make up for that by offering a slideshow of several of the VISIONS 2013 canine attendees.
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Taking Their Story of Vision Loss on the Road

The Purvis FamilyAmong the 600 attendees at VISIONS 2013 in Baltimore are Rollie and Sandie Purvis, the parents of two brothers who star in a full-length documentary titled Driving Blind. While the average film-goer isn’t yet able to see the film, it has been, and continues to be, screened in festivals nationwide. Perhaps most importantly for those focused on retinal diseases, it tells the real-life story of two guys who wanted to see as much of the United States as possible before losing their vision completely.
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Dr. Luk Vandenberghe and His Work in Gene Therapy

Dr. LukOne of the brilliant researchers attending VISIONS 2013 is Luk Vandenberghe, a Belgium-born principal investigator at Massachusetts Eye and Ear who also happens to be a recipient of Foundation funding. His specialty is gene therapy, or fixing defects in the genes that cause retinal diseases. But his knowledge of genetics, after 15 years in the field, is broad, which is one of the reasons why he sat on the “Gene Therapy 101” panel, along with Drs. Shannon Boye and John Flannery, at the conference.
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Scientists Convene at VISIONS 2013 to Evaluate Research Projects for Funding

FFB Scientific Advisory Board members Drs. David Birch, Retina Foundation of the Southwest; Jeremy Nathans, Johns Hopkins University; Ricard Weleber, Oregon Health & Science University.

Just before the official kick-off of the VISIONS 2013 conference in Baltimore, 20 members of the Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) gathered in an intensive daylong session to evaluate 28 individual research projects up for funding from the Foundation. The proposals were finalists from 117 initial submissions made last fall. Continue Reading…

Join Us in Baltimore for VISIONS 2013

VISIONS 2011 Exhibit hallLate June is great for two reasons: the arrival of summer and the annual gathering of Foundation Fighting Blindness members, associates and researchers at its VISIONS conference. This year, VISIONS 2013 will take place in FFB’s founding city, Baltimore, Maryland, June 27-30, and we’ve got it covered.
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Retinal Regeneration is Major Focus of NEI’s Audacious Goal

Paul SieivingThe National Eye Institute (NEI) just announced that fighting blindness — retinal degenerations, in particular — has gotten audacious. It’s potentially life-changing news for people with these difficult conditions.
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Stay Tuned for Daily Updates on “Life-Changing Research” from ARVO

ARVO 2013 discuss some of the posters on displayI am excited to be reporting to you live from Seattle where about 10,000 of the world’s top eye researchers are convening for the annual meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO). While researchers from many different ophthalmic fields are present at ARVO, it is the world’s largest gathering of retinal scientists. Continue Reading…