Forecasting Glaucoma Disease Progression with Artificial Intelligence
MAJOR GAPS IN GLAUCOMA CARE: We currently have no way to forecast glaucoma disease progression or make predictions about whether patients will require incisional surgery or be blinded by glaucoma. Also, decisions about target IOP are arbitrary and based on clinical consideration of patient age, amount of baseline damage, and baseline IOP.
The Glaucoma Foundation (TGF) is requesting applications that address these gaps using artificial intelligence strategies. Successful applications will be supported at the level of up to $250,000 USD over a two-year period. No indirect funds are allowed. TGF wants to focus on applications that forecast outcomes rather than provide alternative monitoring strategies. Also, while a great deal of interest has been placed on using AI to use images to predict a surrogate outcome, a successful application is one that will forecast an outcome and ultimately impact patient care. The research team must be willing to share the algorithm freely. This would not involve sharing individual-level patient data. The most competitive application will be one that could lead to a randomized clinical trial of AI-guided versus usual care in the management of glaucoma, although that will not be the objective of this RFA.
For more information and to apply click here.
The Glaucoma Foundation announces a new granting platform focused on the topic of intraocular pressure-independent mechanisms of optic nerve degeneration in glaucoma. Examples of research that may be considered range from basic science to clinical interventions, such as genetics and genomic medicine, disease modeling, assessment of ocular perfusion, artificial intelligence, and clinical research. A priority will be given to novel proposals with a viable study hypothesis that can lead to impactful results that are fundable at the NIH level. Each one-year grant award is $60,000 and is potentially renewable for a second year.
Grant applications on this topic as well as exfoliation syndrome and exfoliation glaucoma will be accepted in Spring 2022. For more information click here.
New Fellowships Support Under-Represented Minorities in Glaucoma Research
The Glaucoma Foundation and Research to Prevent Blindness have partnered to provide five fellowships in 2021 to increase innovation and diversity in glaucoma research.
NEW YORK, March 10, 2021 – The Glaucoma Foundation (TGF) and Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB) have partnered to launch a new grant aimed at supporting under-represented racial and ethnic minority researchers in the pursuit of glaucoma research. The TGF (sponsored by Patricia Hill) / RPB Fellowships in Glaucoma provide one-year, $10,000 fellowships focused on substantive glaucoma research, including investigation into the etiology, diagnosis and/or treatment of glaucoma, to current ophthalmology fellows with an MD, MD/PhD, PhD or other relevant degree.
“TGF is delighted to be partnering with Research to Prevent Blindness on these timely initiatives to bring greater diversity into the field of glaucoma research – an important step in reducing disparities in vision care,” said Elena Sturman, President and CEO, The Glaucoma Foundation. “Combining our resources will help to accelerate our efforts – to bring greater awareness to glaucoma, to preserve vision, and to find a cure.”
Glaucoma, a group of eye diseases that cause damage to the primary conduit between the eye and the brain—the optic nerve—can lead to vision loss or blindness. Risk factors for glaucoma include being over the age of 60; being of African American or Hispanic/Latino heritage and over age 40; and having a family history of the disease.
At the start of the disease process, glaucoma is often asymptomatic, however, early detection and treatment of glaucoma is key to maintaining vision. Treatments can help protect the optic nerve and extend vision, however, there is currently no cure for glaucoma or its associated vision loss. For this reason, TGF and RPB are joining forces to support researchers who are dedicated to generating new knowledge in the glaucoma space.
“Each mind that gets turned onto glaucoma research is like a candle that sheds light on this disease. We need candles of all types and from all places to cast off the darkness caused by glaucoma,” said Louis Pasquale, MD, FARVO, TGF Scientific Board Co-Chairman; Site Chair, Department of Ophthalmology, Mount Sinai Hospital; and Director, Eye and Vision Research Institute, New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai.
“We look forward to an excellent slate of applicants for these exciting Fellowships that will move the needle on glaucoma research while supporting a healthy and diverse research ecosystem – two critical goals worth championing,” said Brian Hofland, PhD, President of Research to Prevent Blindness. For more information, visit The Glaucoma Foundation’s application page.
About The Glaucoma Foundation
The Glaucoma Foundation is dedicated to improving the lives of people with glaucoma. The Foundation works to encourage and support basic and applied research in glaucoma with a goal of preserving and restoring vision. We strive to be an important resource to help patients, their families, and at-risk individuals to manage their glaucoma through education and outreach.
About Research to Prevent Blindness
The mission of Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB) is to preserve and restore vision by supporting research to develop treatments, preventives and cures for all conditions that damage and destroy sight. Since it was founded 60 years ago, in 1960, RPB has channeled more than $383 million into eye research. As a result, RPB has been identified with nearly every major breakthrough in vision research in that time. Learn more at www.rpbusa.org.
DR. AHTI TARKKANEN ACCEPTS THE 2020 DR. ROBERT RITCH AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE AND INNOVATION IN GLAUCOMA
TUNE INTO THIS RECENT MEETING WITH MEMBERS OF TGF'S BOARD
The Glaucoma and Exfoliation Syndrome-Back to Basics
For the past as it ten years, TGF has been funding research in exfoliation syndrome (XFS) and exfoliation glaucoma. In this recorded ZOOM meeting with the members of our board of directors, Dr. Louis Pasquale explains XFS, what we believe contributes to its development, and what further funding might accomplish.
Dr. Sande Eisenberg - Patricia Hill Fellowship in Glaucoma
This spring, The Glaucoma Foundation awarded the inaugural Dr. Sande Eisenberg – Patricia Hill Fellowship in Glaucoma to Dr. Jessica Scott and Dr. Sejal Patel, both fellows at Columbia University Medical Center in New York.
Dr. Sejal Patel has been focusing her goals on meaningful patient access. In medical school, she was part of a team that served the remote community of the Himalayan mountain range where care is available only biannually. During her residency, she returned to India to perform extracapsular cataract extraction on some of the same patients.
Dr. Patel trained for medical school and residency at the Montefiore Medical Campus in the Bronx, NY. Working with the local Guyanese population there, she realized that for many of these patients, glaucoma had progressed more than in other subgroups. This confirms her belief in the need for more and better education and access to care.
Dr. Scott’s interest in glaucoma started when she was a child. Her father, a comprehensive ophthalmologist, taught her and her siblings about the basic structures of the eye during their free time at home.
As she progressed in her career from ophthalmic techncian to resident, her interest in glaucoma deepened. “It is the perfect marriage between being in the clinic and the operating room,” she says. “In addition, the advent of emerging new glaucoma medications, surgeries, and devices, make a career in glaucoma even more exciting.”