Vision Seminars Schedule is Announced
Researchers Identify Canine Model of LCA (NPHP5)
Scientists developing a treatment for an inherited
retinal disease, have as a first task to identify or create a
model of the condition. Disease models can be cells in a
Petri dish or a genetically engineered animal. Each type
of model has its pros and cons, including cost and similarity of disease characteristics to those in humans.
The investigators then use the model to study which
types of retinal cells degenerate, what is causing the degeneration, and how quickly the cells stop working.
University of Pennsylvania researchers funded by the
Foundation recently identified a canine model of Leber
congenital amaurosis (LCA) caused by mutations in the
gene NPHP5. In humans, the condition causes early and
severe vision loss from LCA, and in some cases, kidney
dysfunction. The investigators found that in canines, the
retinal degeneration is remarkably similar to that in hu-
mans with NPHP5 mutations, though dogs don’t have
the renal dysfunction.
Using the model, Dr. Gus Aguirre and his colleagues
are now testing potential gene therapies to slow or halt
vision loss, or possibly improve vision, in humans.
They’ve already had some success in canines.
For more information:
San Francisco ...............October 22
New York City........... November 13
Chicago ............ February 11, 2017
Dallas ............... February 25, 2017
Seattle...................... May 20, 2017
The Vision Seminar Series provides research based in- formation on retinal degen-
erative diseases for the public. Each
seminar features presentations by
at least one local vision researcher
and or clinician and a member of
the Foundation’s Science team. The
goal of the series is to raise public
awareness of retinal diseases and to
provide affected families with infor-
mation about emerging research,
clinical trials and resources within
their communities. The half-day
events are open to the public.
The seminar series is sponsored,
in part, by an unrestricted education grant from Genentech; and is
presented without charge by The
Chatlos Foundation Public Health
Education Program of the Foundation Fighting Blindness.
For more information contact
Mitsy Palmer at (800) 683-5555 or
Paralympian Dartanyon Crockett spoke
at the FFB Visions2016 Conference
in June. His keynote speech about
overcoming his visual impairment to
achieve world caliber status in his sport:
judo, inspired many in the audience.
But, that wasn’t all that he had planned
for this summer. In September he
represented the USA at the Paralympics
in Rio, winning a bronze medal. You
can hear an excerpt of Dartanyon’s
remarks and audio recordings of all the
conference sessions on the FFB website:
Summary of recent retinal-research advancements.
Go online to get the full story.
FFB to host Vision Seminars in Six Cities: