A great leap in the treatment of hereditary pathologies of vision: gene therapy

Of all the advances that scientific and technological development has brought in the field of hereditary pathologies that affect vision, the most relevant and transcendent for the patient is the possibility of applying treatments for diseases that, until now, were considered incurable. . 30 years ago a new type of therapy was successfully started: gene […]

Update on phase III therapies for hereditary vision disorders

When discussing the treatment for prevalent disorders such as hypertension or asthma, hardly ever do we stop and consider the time and effort that are needed to move from the characterization of the pathology at the clinical level to the implementation of an effective therapy. Nevertheless, this long, highly regulated process is an unavoidable step […]

TwinPE: An improved genome-editing tool that allows inserting entire genes for gene therapy

Researchers at the Broad Institute of Harvard University have just reported in the scientific journal Nature Biotechnology an improved version of prime editing, the highly accurate genome editing method developed in 2019 by the same team. This new version, called twin prime editing (twinPE), allows insertion of DNA fragments of the size of a gene into specific sites of […]

Innovation in gene therapy designs for retinal diseases

Gene therapy aims to recover the normal function of the cells of a patient to obtain a therapeutic benefit by introducing genetic material. The benefit being, for example, in improving the immune system response to fight cancer or correcting a genetic disorder by rescuing gene function. Scientists harness the natural ability of viruses to transfer […]

Innovative gene therapy for autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa

Mutations in the RHO gene are the main cause of dominant forms of retinitis pigmentosa (RP). RHO dictates the production of rhodopsin, a transmembrane protein present in large quantities in the outer segment of rod photoreceptor cells which, together with 11-cis-retinal, initiates the phototransduction cascade. Mutations in RHO often cause photoreceptor toxicity because they negatively affect the function of the normal […]

Novel high-precision gene therapy to correct an eye disease in mice

Researchers from the Seoul National University (Korea) have applied for the first an improved genome-editing methodology, named prime editing to correct the genetic defects of two animal models of human disease: a liver disease (hereditary tyrosinemia) and an eye disease (Leber congenital amaurosis). This high-precision genome-editing tool, developed only two years ago by the team […]

Encouraging advances in therapies for Leber congenital amaurosis

Editas Medicine CRISPR therapy for CEP290 gene Editas Medicine, a company specialising in the development of gene editing therapies, has announced the recruitment of paediatric patients to the Brilliance trial. This phase 1/2 clinical trial began last year and is based on the CRISPR gene editing methodology to excise the intron mutation c.2991+1655A>G, which produces an aberrant […]

LHON gene therapy affords sustained improvement in visual acuity paving the way to approval

The biopharma company GenSight Biologics, specialized in developing gene therapies for retinal degenerative diseases, recently published results of two Phase III clinical trials on the effect of LUMEVOQ gene therapy for Leber Hereditary Optic Neuropathy (LHON) patients. In September 2020, GenSight requested approval of LUMEVOQ to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) to treat LHON patients carrying a mutation […]

Optogenetic therapy to restore advanced vision loss in retinal dystrophies

Gene therapies currently under study for retinal dystrophies are administered when viable photoreceptor able to be rescued at the functional level still remain. Most therapies are gene-specific and, in some cases, mutation-specific. In advanced disease stages, when a large number of photoreceptor cells have degenerated, the probability of success of these therapies is very low. […]

Encouraging results from achromatopsia gene therapy trials

Achromatopsia is a disorder that affects one in every 30,000 people and is characterized by the partial or total absence of colour vision due to lack of function of cones, one type of retinal cells. Achromatopsia patients have other visual problems such as extreme sensitivity to light (photophobia), uncontrollable and involuntary eye movements (nystagmus) and decreased […]