Usher syndrome is the most common genetic cause of combined deafness and blindness. More than 400,000 people are affected by this disorder worldwide. There is currently no cure for Usher syndrome.
The Usher Syndrome Coalition is working to raise awareness and accelerate research, while providing information and support to impacted individuals and families. We strive to be the most comprehensive resource for the Usher syndrome community, bridging the gap between researchers and families. Learn more and get involved.
The number one question asked of the Usher Syndrome Coalition is “What is the status on treatments and/or a cure for Usher syndrome?” In order to be able to answer this question, the Usher Syndrome Coalition sponsors an annual conference focused exclusively on the latest efforts and findings of Usher researchers worldwide. This year, for the first time, our 10th annual USH Connections conference, along with the fourth international symposium for scientists, will be hosted by our partners in Germany.
A group of research physicians have discovered that using stem cells from a person’s own bone marrow has reported success in improving vision for patients with Retinitis Pigmentosa. The bone marrow stem cells come from the same person; therefore, there can be no rejection. Of the 33 eyes studied, 45.5% of individual eyes improved and 45.5% remained stable over the follow-up period when they typically have been worsening. Vision improvement is 98.4% likely to be a consequence of this treatment.
A US clinician has received a five-year £6.1 million grant to investigate the potential of advancing a gene therapy currently used in dogs to help retinitis pigmentosa (RP) patients. The treatment restored the night vision and stopped the progression of the daytime vision-loss in dogs with progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). PRA is an inherited condition in dogs and is caused by the same genes that are responsible for RP. This new grant will allow clinicians to build on primary studies in preparation for a possible clinical trial in human patients with RP.
Scott Davert had the pleasure of attending the first Deaf-Blind International Conference for the Network of the Americas. The conference introduced a variety of technologies such as insideONE Tactile Braille Tablet, Captel, and Video Relay Services. Each of these technologies were designed to help deaf-blind people.
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