Glaucoma is the world’s leading cause of irreversible blindness, a condition more feared than cancer. The only treatments available slow vision loss by controlling pressure in the eye, but nevertheless about one third of patients still go on to lose sight in at least one eye.
Our research aims to find new and effective treatments for glaucoma, independent of intraocular pressure control.
Led by Dr Andrew White, a clinical ophthalmologist in Westmead Hospital’s Eye Clinic and laboratory-based researcher, our research discoveries can quickly be translated into concrete benefits for patients.
- Neuroprotection: This research focuses on the mechanisms behind the progressive death of retinal ganglion cells (RGC), which leads to vision loss. This work is finding ways to keep RGC alive and functional, and will eventually enable us to not only prevent but to restore vision loss associated with glaucoma.
- Gene studies: By understanding the genetic pathways used for RGC survival, we are studying treatments for glaucoma using already approved drugs.
- Screening: We are using big data, neural networks and image analysis techniques to help us screen patients for their risk of vision loss. This enables us to target treatments more effectively.