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July 24, 2017

Safely viewing a solar eclipse

Posted in: Latest News

Important information from the National Eye Institute  A solar eclipse will be visible across North America for 2 to 3 hours on Monday, August 21, 2017. Watching the moon slowly block out the sun is a rare opportunity but should be attempted with caution. “Never look directly at the sun or an eclipse! The sun’s rays
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July 22, 2017

Can We Trust Clinical Trials?

Posted in: Latest News, Research and Developments

An analysis published July 19 in Regenerative Medicine reminds us to be cautious about believing everything we read regarding clinical trials. A good case in point is our earlier report about three women who were blinded by an unproven stem cell treatment at a Florida clinic in 2015. They had been misled primarily by thinking that simply
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July 15, 2017

New App for iOS Reads Text and Describes the World

Posted in: Latest News

Microsoft has released a free app using amazing new technology to assist blind people. It’s called Seeing AI: Talking camera for the blind. The app harnesses the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to narrate the world around the user by describing nearby people, text and objects. Once it is downloaded, the user simply points the device’s camera at
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July 6, 2017

Forgetfulness Can Actually Be Good For Us

Posted in: Latest News, Research and Developments

by Dan Roberts Research published in the June 2017 issue of the journal Neuron (1) suggests that loss of details in our memories may be beneficial to those of us who are visually impaired. Vision is eyesight, memory and logic working together. (2) Visually impaired individuals learn from experience that when eyesight is less clear,
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June 29, 2017

Anti-VEGF Treatment Should Not Be Expected to Improve Vision

Posted in: Latest News, Therapies, Treatments, and Procedures

Clearing up a misunderstanding Anti-VEGF drugs for treating wet age-related macular degeneration are highly successful at inhibiting neovascularization, but they are limited to that alone. Clinical trials for Lucentis (ranibizumab) and Eylea (aflibercept) are showing better than 90% success at blocking the growth factors responsible for uncontrolled blood vessel growth into the retina, and off-label
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June 1, 2017

New One-time Gene Therapy For Wet AMD Could Replace Regular Injections

Posted in: Latest News, Research and Developments

A new drug called RGX-314 is being developed as a one-time sub-retinal injection for wet AMD. This would be a significant improvement over current anti-VEGF therapies requiring repetitive and frequent intraocular injections. REGENXBIO Inc. has announced that the first human patient has been dosed in a phase I clinical trial of RGX-314. The drug has
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May 23, 2017

Summary of Research and Developments–2017

Posted in: Daily Living, Latest News, Low Vision Rehabilitation, Research and Developments, Therapies, Treatments, and Procedures

Presentation to the International Low Vision Support Group June 1, 2017 Dan Roberts INTRODUCTION This is my 12th annual summary of leading research and developments occuring during the past 12 months in the fields of blindness and low vision. Sources for further information will appear beneath each topic heading, but for the sake of brevity,
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April 26, 2017

Hidden Thoughts of the Visually Impaired

Posted in: Daily Living

Presented by Dan Roberts to the International Low Vision Support Group, February 2017) View/listen to the presentation. Those of us who are affected by vision loss often feel like we are in a vacuum, dealing alone with the physiological and emotional effects on our personal lives. We hesitate to discuss our concerns with anyone, so
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April 24, 2017

Annual Eye Exams For Retinopathy May Be Unnecessary For Some Type 1 Diabetics

Posted in: Latest News, Research and Developments

Currently, patients who have had type 1 diabetes for 5 years are encouraged to have annual dilated retinal exams to look for possible progression to diabetic retinopathy (DR) or diabetic macular edema (DME). Both of these conditions can lead to severe vision loss and should be treated immediately. Now, a 30-year study* published in April
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April 24, 2017

Women Face Higher Risk of Blindness Than Men

Posted in: Eye Conditions, Latest News

Studies show there is a gender gap in eye disease. Women are more likely than men to suffer from sight-threatening conditions such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), cataracts, and glaucoma.1 In support of Healthy Vision Month in May, the American Academy of Ophthalmology reminds women to make vision a top priority. Women make up 65 percent
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April 17, 2017

FDA Approves Lucentis® for Diabetic Retinopathy

Posted in: Latest News, Research and Developments

Genentech, Inc. has announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Lucentis® (ranibizumab injection) 0.3 mg for the monthly treatment of all forms of diabetic retinopathy. The most common cause of vision loss in people with diabetes, diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness among adults aged 20 to 74 and affects
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April 15, 2017

New Sustained Delivery Method for Lucentis

Posted in: Latest News, Research and Developments

Genentech, Inc. is testing a less-invasive method of delivery of their anti-VEGF drug Lucentis into the eyes of patients with wet AMD. Currently, anti-VEGF treatments require regular monthly or bi-monthly injections into the back of the eye, which can be taxing on patients’ time and stress level. The new method utilizes a timed release capsule
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April 2, 2017

Brain “rewires” itself to enhance other senses in blind people

Posted in: Latest News, Research and Developments

A common belief that blind people possess unusually heightened non-visual senses now may be more than just a belief. Credit: Bauer et al. PLOS ONE 2017 A new study led by Massachusetts Eye and Ear researchers has found that the brains of those who are born blind make new connections in the absence of visual information.
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March 30, 2017

Assistive Technology in the Middle Lane

Posted in: Daily Living

by Dan Roberts (This presentation to the April 2017 session of the International Low Vision Support Group is also available in audio-visual format. The following transcript may be freely printed and distributed.) When it comes to assistive technology for the blind and visually impaired, so many options present themselves that it may be helpful to
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March 27, 2017

Once-Promising Study of Encapsulated Cell Technology Halted

Posted in: Latest News, Research and Developments

Researchers have found no significant difference between patients implanted with capsules manufacturing the drug NT-503 and patients receiving anti-VEGF drug injections. As reported on this site in 2015, Neurotech Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced a Phase 2 clinical study of NT-503 Encapsulated Cell Therapy (ECT) for the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The study planned
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