£19m to tackle sight loss

Moorfields Eye Hospital and University College London ophthalmology research centre receives another five-year grant

19 Sep 2016 by Olivia Wannan

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) has awarded a £19m fund to the Moorfields Eye Hospital and University College London (UCL) Institute of Ophthalmology partnership.

The grant will allow the Moorfields NIHR Biomedical Research Centre for Ophthalmology to continue the work it began in 2007 for another five years, starting from April 2017.

The centre aims to rapidly develop new therapies and diagnostics for common and rare ocular conditions.

Successes from the centre include a therapy to block a protein that switches on in the eyes of patients with wet age-related macular degeneration. The therapy has now been funded for an early-phase clinical trial, to be conducted in 2018.

UCL and Moorfields Eye Hospital joint research director, Professor Andrew Dick, expressed his delight at the centre’s continued funding.

He explained that: “This substantial investment in eye research will enable us to continue to rapidly develop and deliver life-changing treatments for our patients. With sight loss predicted to double by the year 2050, this vital funding for eye research has never been more important.

“This award recognises our world-leading excellence in translating basic research through to treatments and improvements for patients,” Professor Dick concluded.

Image credit: Petr Kratochvil

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