Apr 25, 2018

ARVO 2018: World’s Largest Show and Tell for Innovations in Eye Research

Eye On the Cure Research News

More than 11,000 eye researchers from around the world — including five intrepid members from FFB’s science team — will gather to participate in what is essentially a massive “show and tell” of the latest scientific advancements.

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In addition to funding sight-saving research, we at FFB work hard to tell the scientific world about it. That's because knowledge sharing and collaboration are critical to accelerating the advancement of promising therapies. Progress in developing treatments and cures isn't made in a vacuum. The best opportunity for us to showcase FFB-funded research is at the annual meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), which is being held April 29 — May 3 this year in Honolulu. More than 11,000 eye researchers from around the world — including five intrepid members from FFB's science team — will gather to participate in what is essentially a massive "show and tell" of the latest scientific advancements.

This year at ARVO, FFB will have its own, impressive show and tell, highlighting nearly 100 posters and presentations on a variety of topics including:

  • MyRetinaTracker.org (our global patient registry),
  • FFB patient genetic testing program,
  • FFB ProgStar natural history study for Stargardt disease,
  • and dozens of FFB-funded research efforts for treatments and cures.

In addition, we'll be hosting our 5th Retinal Innovation Summit, which convenes more than 200 researchers and industry leaders for 37 presentations on the latest developments in clinical trials and translational research for inherited retinal diseases. This pre-ARVO, one-day summit is co-hosted by Casey Eye Institute at Oregon Health & Science University, and sponsored by: Spark Therapeutics, AGTC, REGENXBIO and NightStar Therapeutics.

Other examples of FFB-related sessions at ARVO include:

How Foundations Can Enhance Clinical Trial Enrollment and Advance Patients as Partners

Saturday, April 28, 3:45-4:00 p.m. HST, Room 316A

Stephen Rose, PhD, FFB's chief research officer will discuss how FFB has engaged patients to boost clinical trial enrollment, and opportunities to educate patients on how trials for specific treatments benefit the entire community of people with retinal diseases.

Proctor Award: From Observations in the Retina Clinic to Insights into Pathophysiology

Sunday, April 29, 10:45-11:30 a.m. HST, Ballrooms BC

Sam Jacobson, MD, PhD, and Artur Cideciyan, PhD, FFB-funded researchers at the Scheie Eye Institute, University of Pennsylvania, are world leaders in clinical research for inherited retinal diseases. Among their many groundbreaking efforts, they played a key role in advancing RPE65 gene therapy into and through human studies. In addition to receiving the prestigious Proctor Award, they will deliver what is sure to be an insightful lecture on clinical diagnosis and the new era of vision-saving therapeutics.

Optogenetics for Vision Restoration — Translation

Sunday, April 29, 3:37-3:54 p.m. HST, Room 314

Optogenetics is an innovative approach for restoring vision to people who are completely blind from diseases like retinitis pigmentosa, regardless of the gene causing their vision loss. Deniz Dalkara, PhD, at the Institut de la Vision in Paris, will present FFB-funded research to move this approach into a clinical trial sponsored by GenSight.

Genetic Testing Adds Research and Clinical Value to a Retinal Degeneration Registry

Wednesday, May 2, 12:45-1:00 p.m. HST, Room 316C (paper session 4472)

Kari Branham, genetic counselor at the University of Michigan's Kellogg Eye Institute, will discuss how FFB's genetic testing program and global patient registry (www.MyRetinaTracker.org) are boosting retinal-disease research and patient access to clinical trials and studies.

Stay tuned to Eye on the Cure for updates from Honolulu on some of the outstanding research underway to save and restore vision. ALOHA for now!