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EYE-RISK debates genetic tests for AMD at ARVO 2017

Members of the EYE-RISK Project organized a Special Interest Group (SIG) meeting during the Annual Meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), which was held from May 7th – 11th in Baltimore (USA).

ARVO is the largest vision research conference in the world, with more then 12.000 members. The goal of the SIG meeting, entitled “Predictive testing for age-related macular degeneration: are we there yet?” was to discuss whether genetic testing should be offered for age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the most common cause of vision loss in the elderly.

The SIG meeting was organised by EYE-RISK members Anneke den Hollander and Caroline Klaver, and other EYE-RISK members participated in the panel discussion, including Cecile Delcourt, Jordi Mones and Carel Hoyng. In addition, Johanna Seddon (Tufts University, Boston) and Emily Chew (NEI, Bethesda and ARVO president as well as member of EYE-RISK's Scientific Advosory Board) participated in the discussion.

The panellists reviewed the latest developments in the research into AMD, from genetic tests to the use of predictive models for the identification of individuals at high risk of suffering from the disease. During a panel discussion the session’s approximately 300 attendees were given the chance to interact actively with the panellists by responding to propositions put up for discussion.
The overall conclusion of the SIG meeting was that genetic testing for AMD will become important once treatments for AMD are developed, particularly if the genotype would be an important indicator for success of the treatment. Genetic testing could also help to motivate high-risk individuals to change their lifestyle, to reduce their risk for end-stage AMD. However, in general the audience felt that genetic testing might have negative consequences for individuals, particularly if the genetic test  is not accurate, or when obtaining a life insurance or mortgage.

Training activity II - Young Researcher Vision Camp

A Young Researcher Vision Camp will be held in a remote medieval castle situated in Leibertingen, Germany from June 30th until July 2nd, 2017. Two 1-hour sessions of the Vision Camp 2017 will be dedicated to the EYE-RISK project.

EYE-RISK session I:

Chair: Anneke den Hollander (beneficiary 4, RUMC)

Speakers:

  • Annemarie Colijn, young researcher of beneficiary 2, EMC
  • Eveline Kersten, young researcher of beneficiary 4, RUMC
  • Soufiane Ajana, young researcher of beneficiary 5, UB

EYE-RISK session II:

Chair: Berta de la Cerda Haynes (beneficiary 12, FPS)

Speakers:

  • Sofia Calado, young researcher of beneficiary 12, FPS
  • Fran Pool, young researcher of beneficiary 6, UCL
  • Eduardo Rodriguez, young researcher of beneficiary 7, BMF
  • Ana Belén Garcia Delgado, young researcher of beneficiary 12, FPS

More information can be found on the website http://www.vision-research.eu/index.php?id=464

The aim of the Young Researcher Vision Camp is to provide young academics from ophthalmology and vision research with an innovative possibility to present themselves and their work to fellow researchers and to allow them to build and strengthen personal scientific networks in an international environment. The Vision Camp differs from ‘traditional conferences’ by its venue (remote medieval castle) and by combining the scientific demand (talks and/or posters presented by doctoral or early postdoctoral students) with networking opportunities (morning exercises, open-air barbecue, excursion to the ‘Campus Galli’, evening tour with wild life ranger in the Valley Danube).

The EYE-RISK consortium will host a Special Interest Group (SIG) Meeting at ARVO 2017

The EYE-RISK consortium will host a Special Interest Group (SIG) Meeting at ARVO 2017, the Annual Meeting 2017 of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology.

Date:Wednesday, May 10, 2017, 1:00 - 2.30 p.m.
Topic:Predictive testing for age-related macular degeneration (AMD): are we there yet?
Speakers:Cecile DelCourt, Jordi Mones, Emily Chew, Johanna Seddon and Carel Hoyng

Prediction models based on combinations of risk factors have been proposed to identify persons at high risk of AMD.

How can predictive models for AMD be further improved, and what are the benefits and risks of offering predictive tests for AMD?

More information on the website https://www.arvo.org/AM/SIG/

5th EYE-RISK consortium meeting

The 5th EYE-RISK consortium meeting, hosted by beneficiary 1, Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen (EKUT), has been held in Tübingen, Germany, on February 16th – 17th, 2017.

Members of the different partner institutions gathered at the Institute for Ophthalmic Research, headed by Prof. Marius Ueffing, the coordinator of the EYE-RISK project. With the assistance of the Work Package leaders they examined the state of the project, shared the recent developments generated by all the members and programmed the work to be undertaken over the coming months.

 One of the Meeting’s new features was the creation of various discussion sub-groups to highlight specific topics that are of prime importance to EYE-RISK and then to integrate the information obtained from each into the project. The choice of cellular and animal models, the analysis of biomarkers and lipids, statistical models and the correct interpretation of images were the principal topics for these sessions.

 The EYE-RISK members visited the lab space and facilities of the new research building in a guided tour led by Prof. Ueffing. The research center forms part of Tübingen’s biomedical and neuroscientific campus and fosters the creativity to generate innovative ideas, their transfer to reality and their translation into the diagnosis and therapy that helps those who suffer vision loss.

EYE-RISK lipids meeting

EYE-RISK researchers from several Project Partners met in Bordeaux on January 19th- 20th 2017 to discuss results and further work plans investigating the influence of lipid metabolism on AMD.

4th EYE-RISK consortium meeting - October 2016

The 4th EYE-RISK consortium meeting was held in Barcelona, Spain on October 25th - 27th, 2016.

The 4th EYE-RISK consortium meeting, hosted by beneficiary 3, CRG, was successfully held in Barcelona, Spain on October 25th - 27th, 2016.

Work package leaders and scientists from the different EYE-RISK partner organizations discussed the project’s progress together with Scientific Officer Dr. Dora Navarro Torné (European Commision), and Scientific Advisory Board members Prof. Hendrik Scholl (Professor for Ophthalmology, Head of Eye Clinic, Universitätsspital Basel, Basel, Switzerland), Prof. Brian Mansfield (Deputy Chief Research Officer at Foundation Fighting Blindness, Baltimore, USA) and Christina Fasser (President of Retina International, Zurich, Switzerland). Goals of the meeting were to evaluate the development of the project during the first 18 months and to plan publications and tasks for months 19 to 30 of the project.

To give an overview to the field, Hendrik Scholl and Brian Mansfield presented in their lectures the current state of AMD research, while Christina Fasser added the viewpoint of the patient’s association. Meeting sessions were dedicated to presentations of the different work packages and discussion of the upcoming challenges and tasks. Specific topics and collaborations were addressed in several working groups.

Fighting Blindness. Future Challenges and Opportunities for Visual Restoration

On September 6th and 7th, 2016 B·Debate (an initiative of Biocat and "la Caixa" Foundation to promote the scientific debate) and Barcelona Macula Foundation, in collaboration with the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG) and LEITAT Foundation, gathered together international experts to explore the potential of new therapeutic approaches to combat retinal dystrophies. The debate was held at CaixaForum Barcelona.

During the debate basic and translational researchers, leaders and experts shared their knowledge and innovations in the field. Seven members of the EYE-RISK consortium participated and presented their work.

More information on the website www.bdebate.org/en/forum/fighting-blindness-future-challenges-and-opportunities-visual-restoration

3rd EYE-RISK consortium meeting - May 2016

The 3rd EYE-RISK consortium meeting was successfully held on May 5th & 6th, 2016 in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Association for Research in Vision and Opthalmology (ARVO 2016).

The first day of the meeting was dedicated to year 1 progress reports, provided and discussed per work package; on the second day the continuation of WP 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 8 as well as the initiation of WP 4 and 7 was planned.

WP 6 subgroup meeting - February 2016

On February 12th, 2016 a work package 6 subgroup meeting was held in Tübingen, Germany. During this meeting the implementation of the tasks foreseen in WP 6 were discussed.

2nd EYE-RISK meeting - 2 day Workshop October 2015

The 2nd EYE-RISK meeting was successfully held in Costa d'en Blanes-Calvià, Mallorca, Spain from October 15th to 17th, 2015.

Details

Date: Oct 15, 16 & 17, 2015
Venue: H10 Hotel Punta Negra | Costa d'en Blanes-Calvià | Mallorca | Spain
Address: C/ Punta Negra, 12, 07181-Costa d'en Blanes-Mallorca, SPAIN
Directions: flight to Palma de Mallorca airport, then taxi to hotel, 25 km distance, approx. 28 €

Preliminary Program

Start: Oct 15, 11:00
End: Oct 17, 14:00

Topics:

  • WP1-6 data generation
  • WP2 data integration
  • WP3 biomarkers
  • WP3 metabolomics
  • Integration of WP4 stratified risk prediction and WP7 clinical validation

EYE-RISK - The Kick-off meeting in London

The EYE-RISK kick-off meeting, hosted by UCL & MEH, was successfully held in London, UK on June 23rd and 24th, 2015.