Translational research on retinal disorders

Translationale Forschung bei Erkrankungen der Netzhaut

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Translational research on retinal disorders

Our group aims to bring promising new therapies to patients with retinal disorders. Our mission is therefore to understand disease processes leading to blindness, developing treatment strategies and testing promising new drugs in clinical trials.

  • Understanding disease: As clinician-scientists we benefit from the unique structure of the Department of Ophthalmology with its strong links between the Institute for Ophthalmic Research and the University Eye Hospital. Using this platform, we utilize in vitro disease models, look at animal models in vivo and conduct observational trials to more precisely understand the disease process in our patients. We use this integrative approach to find new therapeutic options and define relevant outcome measures for pre-clinical and clinical trials.
  • Treatment development: We currently focus on developing and optimising gene therapies for hereditary retinal disorders. In the lab, this entails a range of molecular biological and cellular techniques as well as work with animal models where needed (e.g. to provide proof of safety and efficacy before a therapy is used in patients).
  • Clinical trials: Because we see patients, but also observe animal models, study cellular and molecular events in the lab, we provide an integrative view on developing novel diagnostic and therapeutic avenues. Our track record includes the world’s first clinical gene therapy trial for achromatopsia (NCT02610582) as part of the RD-CURE consortium and the first gene therapy trial for choroideremia in Germany (NCT02671539).