FFB Funding Helps Retinal Genetics Lab Secure $2 Million Investment

This is a great story of how the Foundation Fighting Blindness (FFB) provided timely funding of $155,000 to help my lab at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), leverage a $2 million retinal-gene discovery project.
What is very rewarding for me is that FFB’s support helped us find the retinal-disease gene mutation in 33 families, who were otherwise left without a clear diagnosis. Now these families are better able to understand their prognosis and which clinical trials and future therapies may be most relevant to them.

ID Your IRD: A Free Genetic Testing Program for Eligible People with Inherited Retinal Diseases

Genes are like the blueprint or code for determining who we are. We all have about 23,000 pairs of genes in most cells in our bodies. Many of our physical attributes — such as height, eye and hair color, and complexion — are determined by our genes.
However, certain misspellings, also known as mutations, in our genetic code can cause diseases or increase our risk for them. In fact, each inherited retinal disease (IRD) is caused by a mutation in a single gene.

Foundation Fighting Blindness Role in Advancing Inherited Retinal Disease Research Evident at ARVO National Conference

The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO)’s annual conference – Baltimore, May 7-11 – gathers the field’s leading researchers to report on advancements in vision science including the search for cures for retinal degenerative diseases.

jCyte Stem-Cell Therapy Moves into Phase IIb Clinical Trial for RP

These are retinal progenitors.
The stem-cell therapy company jCyte is launching a Phase IIb clinical trial of its therapy for people with retinitis pigmentosa (RP). The trial is taking place at University of California, Irvine, and Retina-Vitreous Associates Medical Group in Los Angeles. The 70-participant study is being led by Henry Klassen, MD, PhD. Participant enrollment is scheduled to begin this month.

Innovation Summit Fosters Researcher, Clinician, and Industry Collaborations to Advance Gene and Cell Therapies for Inherited Retinal Diseases

The Foundation Fighting Blindness (FFB), a national nonprofit focused on funding cutting-edge retinal disease research, and the Casey Eye Institute at Oregon Health & Science University will co-host the fourth annual Retinal Cell and Gene Therapy Innovation Summit in Baltimore, May 4–5, 2017.

FFB-CRI Launching Natural History Study for People with USH2A Mutations

USH2A is a target for retinal-disease researchers, because mutations in the gene are the most common cause of Usher syndrome type 2, which causes combined vision loss from retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and hearing loss from inner ear dysfunction. Also, USH2A mutations are a leading cause of RP without hearing loss (i.e., non-syndromic).

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