Inherited retinal conditions are the most common cause of blindness in the working age population of the UK. Last year the first gene therapy for one of these conditions was approved for use on the NHS. This brings real hope; but the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed progress - we must regain momentum.
Registered Charity in England and Wales (1153851)
Gene therapy has made huge progress in recent years, bringing with it the very real possibility that inherited sight loss could be stabilised or even cured.
Last year we learned our five-year-old son Thomas has Usher syndrome which is slowly impacting his hearing and sight. As a family we fundraise and donate to Retina UK. We hope the research we help fund will one day lead to a treatment for Thomas and others like him.
People with inherited sight loss face unique challenges, as they live not only with visual impairment, but also with the knowledge of its inevitable onset and deterioration. Losing your sight can lead to depression, anxiety, social isolation and reduced quality of life, as well as difficulties with finding employment. We aim to do all we can to make these challenges a thing of the past. Medical research into treatments is crucial and we must regain the momentum lost during the COVD-19 pandemic.
We will carefully invest the funds raised into the most promising medical research projects currently taking place. Our selective approach aims to achieve the maximum amount of progress, and the emergence of the very first treatment from the clinical trials pipeline last year evidences the fact that this approach works. We also aim to support researchers with cost extensions where their work has been impacted by COVID-19.
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