This year's Iraty Award for Research in Retinal Diseases honors Petr Baranov, PhD, a scientist at Schepens Eye Research Institute of Mass. Eye and Ear and Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School. The award, which includes a $100,000 prize, was established...
Researchers led by a team at Massachusetts Eye and Ear have identified a novel cellular entry factor for adeno-associated virus vector (AAV) types—the most commonly used viral vectors for in vivo gene therapy. AAVs are vectors–or vehicles—that are created from a virus that is made harmless by molecular engineering, and have shown promise transporting genetic therapy treatments to affected tissues.... Read more about Researchers Uncover Mechanism for How Common Gene Therapy Vectors Enter Cells
The Tej Kohli Foundation has pledged $2 million over five years to establish the Tej Kohli Cornea Program at Mass. Eye and Ear, which will accelerate innovative and collaborative research to achieve unprecedented breakthroughs in corneal disease.
A large-scale, collaborative, systems biology approach is needed to expedite the discovery of treatments for dry age-related macular degeneration, according to a report by a working group of scientists appointed by the National Advisory Eye Council (NAEC) that includes Joan. W. Miller, MD, Chair of Harvard Ophthalmology.
New research led by Kip Connor, PhD, finds that microglia—the primary immune cells of the central nervous system, including the retina—play a vital role in regulating neuroinflammation in autoimmune uveitis. The study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciencesand featured on eyewire News, may one day lead to better treatment targets for the disease.
In the preclinical model of autoimmune uveitis, the researchers describe, for the first time, a role for microglia in directing the initiation of autoimmune uveitis by orchestrating the inflammatory response within the retina. In reaction to disease induction, microglia closely associate with the retinal vasculature and facilitate inflammatory immune cell entry past the blood brain, or ocular, barrier into the retina. When the researchers depleted microglia in this model, they observed that the disease was completely blocked.