The University of Iowa Stephen A. Wynn Institute for Vision Research announced today two large steps forward in the battle against blinding eye disease. Both are made possible by a major gift from California businessman, photographer, environmentalist and philanthropist Howard F. Ruby.
April 13th, 2015
December 5th, 2014
Scientists at the WIVR recently published a manuscript in the high impact journal, Progress in Retinal and Eye Research, titled "Complement activation and choriocapillaris loss in early AMD: Implications for pathophysiology and therapy." LINK This manuscript reviews new data showing vascular loss as a very early event in age-related macular degeneration, proposes a hypothesis for how genetic risk factors lead to AMD, and discusses the implications of this model on the development of new therapies.
July 23rd, 2014
Here is Buddy's Drive for the Cure video that aired on the Big Ten Network earlier this month.
April 8th, 2014
Lazier Partners Racing has chosen to bring awareness to the University of Iowa’s Stephen A Wynn Institute for Vision Research [Press release; Buddy's Drive for the Cure]. Buddy Lazier, the 1996 Indianapolis 500 winner and 2000 Verizon IndyCar Series champion, will drive the No. 91 University of Iowa Stephen A. Wynn Institute for Vision Research car in the 2014 Indianapolis 500.
August 8th, 2013
IOWA CITY, IA — Stephen A Wynn has made a $25 million gift commitment to the University of Iowa to support the UI’s Institute for Vision Research (video of ceremony, announcement video). The gift, which was announced at today’s meeting of the State Board of Regents in Ames, will be used to accelerate progress toward cures for rare, inherited retinal diseases.
Patient-specific iPSC-derived photoreceptor precursor cells as a means to investigate retinitis pigmentosaAugust 5th, 2013
In this study, state of the art sequencing technologies were used to identify disease-causing mutations in the USH2A gene in an adult patient with autosomal recessive Retinitis Pigmentosa. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), generated from the patient's skin, were differentiated into multi-layer eyecup-like structures with features of human retinal cells. The inner layer of the eyecups contained immature photoreceptor cells that expressed photoreceptor markers and exhibited cilia and basal bodies characteristic of outer segments.
August 5th, 2013
In 2010 scientists at the University of Iowa Wynn Institute for Vision Research discovered an RP-causing gene known as MAK. They have now embarked upon an ambitious project to cure this disease, which has three major goals.
1) Identify all patients in the United States who have retinitis pigmentosa caused by mutations in the MAK gene.
2) Develop gene-replacement therapy for younger individuals with this disease who still have a substantial amount of functioning retina remaining.
August 4th, 2013
Mutations in ABCA4 cause Stargardt disease and other blinding autosomal recessive retinal disorders. However, sequencing of the complete coding sequence in patients with clinical features of Stargardt disease sometimes fails to detect one or both mutations. For example, among 208 individuals with clear clinical evidence of ABCA4 disease ascertained at a single institution, 28 had only one disease-causing allele identified in the exons and splice junctions of the primary retinal transcript of the gene.
July 30th, 2013
Humans and mice with specific mutations in the BBS1 gene show progressive death of photoreceptor cells. In research recently published in Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Wynn Institute scientists made a virus containing a normal version of the mouse Bbs1 gene and injected the virus under the retina of mutant mice. When compared to untreated mice and untreated eyes in the same mice, the treated mice showed modest improvement in electrical responses in the retina and also showed partial restoration of normal retinal biochemistry.
July 29th, 2013
The purpose of this study was to determine whether a xeno-free synthetic cell culture surface (Synthemax™) could be used to aid in the production and subsequent retinal specific differentiation of clinical grade induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). iPSCs were generated using adult somatic cells via infection with either a single excisable lentiviral vector or 4 separate non-integrating Sendai viruses driving expression of the transcription factors OCT4, SOX2, KLF4, and c-MYC.