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Posts tagged rp

CME – What It Is, and Why People with Retinal Diseases Should Know About It

Dr. FishmanIn this Q&A, Gerald Fishman, M.D., a world-renowned clinical researcher and longstanding member of FFB’s Scientific Advisory Board, discusses cystoid macular edema (CME), a potentially damaging accumulation of fluid in the retina affecting up to 32 percent of people with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and related conditions. It’s a complication that can make matters worse for retinas already fragile from degenerative disease. While diagnosis isn’t always straightforward, CME can be treated to minimize vision loss.
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A True Survivor — Q&A with Fred Scheer, a World War II Vet with RP

Fred Scheer, US ArmyWhen I first met Fred Scheer, I was impressed by his quiet, friendly demeanor. I had no clue, at the time, that he was a U.S. Army veteran who’d been deployed during the D-Day invasion, captured by the Germans and then sent to a labor camp, from which he managed to escape. What is also interesting is that Fred is Jewish and has retinitis pigmentosa (RP).
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Low-Hanging Fruit: Repurposing Drugs to Treat Retinal Diseases

Low-hanging fruitMany years ago, while picking apples with my uncle, he advised me to “pick the low-hanging fruit.” That way, he told me, you can fill your basket faster and not be as tired at the end of the day. I think the same can be said of drug repurposing—the process of evaluating a drug prescribed for one disease to see if it can safely and effectively treat another disease.
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Giving Thanks

The Foundation gives thanks to its supporters.How do you thank the tens of thousands of people who’ve contributed in so many ways this past year – volunteer work, donations, research advances, etc. – to help FFB eradicate retinal diseases? Aside from giving a general shout-out to those folks (you know who you are, including Eye on the Cure readers), we can offer highlights, a sampling, if you will, of the many achievements Foundation supporters have helped make happen this past year.
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All-Star Vision

When the Baltimore Orioles’ Adam Jones makes a great catch — a feat the Gold Glove centerfielder accomplishes on a regular basis — he isn’t thinking about his retinas. But in the five seconds it takes a baseball to leave an opponent’s bat and reach Jones’ glove, his retinas are processing an enormous amount of real-time visual information — continual changes in the contrast, velocity and trajectory of the ball as it rockets out of the infield, reaches high into the stadium lights (or the sun) and descends into the outfield.
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RP Gene Therapy Clinical Trial Update from ARVO

Drs. Nicola Ghazi (left) and Doug Vollrath. I am always pleased to hear reports on human studies for retinal diseases. And such is the case with a research poster I just reviewed at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) annual meeting. It described a new clinical trial underway for a potentially life-changing gene therapy for people with autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (MERTK mutations) taking place at King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital in Saudi Arabia.
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A New Therapeutic Trick for Old Dogs

an image of a retina, courtesy of Dr. Nicolás Cuenca, University of Alicante.A Foundation-funded research team at the University of Pennsylvania — in collaboration with scientists from Michigan State University, the University of Florida and the University of Miami — has found a remarkable way to restore function to fledgling cones, the retinal cells most critical to our daily lives. Drs. András Komáromy and Gutavo Aguirre injected a high dose of a protein called ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) into the eyes of older dogs with achromatopsia, a retinal disease that causes day blindness from cone dysfunction and degeneration. What happened next is extraordinary.
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What Losing Vision Has Taught Me

Image of Shawn MaloneyMy ophthalmologist’s voice was firm and direct. “You’re going blind.” Tough words for a 5-year-old to digest.

Years later — despite efforts to cure my retinal disease, first as a graduate student, then as a postdoctoral researcher focused on ocular pathology — I came to accept the truth that those words carried. I was slowly being forced to adapt to a world not designed for me, or for any visually impaired person. But the progressive nature of my disease, retinitis pigmentosa, meant that time was on my side. I had time to change how I do things, how I communicate, how I think.
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History in the Making

Argus II Fundus ImageWhen it comes to restoring vision in people with retinal diseases, history isn’t made overnight. Treatments and technological advances have to, first, be tested in labs, and then in clinical, or human, trials. And how quickly they move through the process depends on how readily they’re funded, to the tune of tens of millions of dollars. So, making a treatment or device available to the general public takes years, if not decades. Which is why we, at FFB, are so excited about last week’s announcement that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has granted market approval of the Argus II retinal prosthesis.
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Kicking Off a Charitable Season

Ryan Lochte, I didn’t get a chance to meet. I did, however, get a picture taken with Michael J. Fox, who was very cordial but focused most of his attention—and rightly so—on a little girl with muscular dystrophy. Now, actor Steve Buscemi is a character and a half. I was there with Leah Bartos, who’s Mrs. New York, and because I’m Mrs. World, and the two of us were wearing crowns and sashes, he took a look at us and, before a photo was snapped, said, “Wow, let me get in between these two ladies.”
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