|[May 12, 2014]
Florida Research Leader Presented Groundbreaking Advancements in the Fight Against Blinding Eye Disease
ORLANDO, Fla. --(Business Wire)--
This week, a Florida-based research and transplant leader with offices
in Orlando presented two pioneering studies at the Association for
Research in Vision and Ophthalmology conference. The Lions
Eye Institute for Transplant & Research, the world's only
combined eye bank and ocular research center, collaborated with two
major research universities to uncover results altering eye donor and
eye disease exploration.
"We were happy to see the conference come to Orlando and we were pleased
to share our findings with the ARVO attendees. We believe these
developments get us one step closer in the fight against blinding eye
disease," said Jason Woody, president and CEO of LEITR. "ARVO is such an
asset because we always leave with connections that generate more
collaboration among industry and academia leaders."
This year, the LEITR team along with its new scientific director, Dr.
Mitch McCartney, presented two studies:
The first study was completed with the University of Florida and
focused on the exploration of transplant criteria. This study could
complement corneal tissue evaluation and expand the ability for more
people to become donors. This would result in more tissue that could
be used as part of the transplant process - ultimately helping more
people receive transplants that would help them regain sight.
The second study reviewed ways to help those suffering with
age-related macular degeneration - a disease affecting more than two
million people. Working with the University of South Florida, LEITR
explored using an ultrasound process that could identify earlier signs
of age-related macular degeneration. Currently, the majority of AMD (News - Alert)
cases are not caught until later stages.
"At the inception of the first study, we believed that good cornea
tissue may have been excluded from the transplantation process because
of early signs of certain sputum cultures. But, in reality, our research
showed that those early signs did not result in growth - even after
multiple days of incubation," said Dr. McCartney. "The second study is
the first time, to our knowledge, that anyone has used ultrasound
methods to look at the retina. This method will help explore how AMD
progresses and open up doors for future research."
ARVO was held at the Orlando Convention Center in Orlando from May 4-8.
ARVO is the largest and most respected eye and vision research
organization in the world. ARVO members include more than 12,750
researchers from more than 80 countries.
About the Lions Eye Institute for Transplant & Research (LEITR)
The Lions Eye Institute for Transplant & Research, Inc., (LEITR) is a
nonprofit, charitable organization dedicated to the recovery, evaluation
and distribution of eye tissue for transplantation, research and
education. LEITR's Eye Bank, located in Tampa, Fla., is the only
combined eye bank and ocular research center in the world. Since its
inception, it has brought the "Gift of Sight" to more than 60,000 men,
women and children worldwide. For more information, visit www.lionseyeinstitute.org.
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