Annual General Meeting
October 2nd 2009
• Dr Patrick Corley
• Assistant Director of Research with Fighting Blindness
• Scientist with 11 years laboratory and research training &
experience; not a medical doctor
• 10 years experience of research grant management.
• Disclosure: No financial or other interests related to presentation
Our Vision & Mission
• OUR VISION - A world where all sight loss can be prevented or cured.
• OUR MISSION - Fighting Blindness will find treatments and cures for sight
loss through world-leading research, while providing support to all those
- Research -
For unmet medical needs
• Different to national programme of talks that
Fighting Blindness given, Cork, Galway & Dublin
• Intend to role these out to other centres in the
coming months, Sligo, Waterford, Midlands etc
• These are detailed talks, on particular research
areas, along with medical updates.
• Today talk Brief Overview & View of the future
Research Grants we are funding
• 16 research grants at different stages of completion
• University College Cork
• University College Dublin
• University College Galway
• Trinity College Dublin
• Waterford Institute of Technology
• Dublin Institute of Technology
• University College London / Moorfield’s Eye Hospital
So this shows we have a lot
of activity / work……
Therefore What do we do
Now / Next ?
Set Goals to Achieve
How our Research Strategy Emerged
Discussion & Approval
Define our Strategic Goals
What are our selected Strategic goals?
1 To lead and drive biomedical research to prevent, treat or cure blindness
2 To increase the amount of funding for dedicated vision research in Ireland
3 To engage and collaborate with leaders in the vision medical and scientific
4 To steward, support and advocate for the systematic gathering of relevant patient
information for research and planning.
5 To increase the numbers of Irish patients availing of the latest treatments and
therapies by advocating for and supporting the development clinical trials
infrastructure in Ireland.
6 To raise the National and International Profile of Vision Research
1) To lead and drive biomedical research to prevent, treat or cure blindness
1 Gene Therapy
2 Stem Cell Technology
3 Retina Implant Technology
4 Novel Drug Therapies
5 Population Studies
6 Clinical trials
• Gene Therapy
• To carry out gene therapy clinical trials arising from our
funded research within 3 years
• Stem Cell Technology
• Develop a high profile team of leading stem cell
• Develop biological products from stem cells to help repair
or stabilise damaged retina
• To increase the number of stem cell researchers working
on retinal disorders in Ireland.
2) To increase the amount of funding for dedicated vision research in Ireland
• Maintain the profile of Vision research nationally and
• Capitalise and take advantage of funding initiatives aimed at
• Create international programmes to up-skill and introduce
skills to Ireland
• Maintain profile of blindness research distinct from
3) To engage and collaborate with leaders in the vision medical and
scientific research arena
• Review, assess and support Networking activities e.g. All Ireland Retina Research
Network (AIRRN) and Irish Network of Neural Stem cell Investigators (INNSI).
• Enhance linkages with European Vision Institute, EuroVisionNet, Tubingen,
Retina International, ARVO etc.
• Explore collaborations and professional linkages with sister organisations in
the US and Globally
4) To steward, support and advocate the systematic gathering of relevant
patient information for research and planning
• Steward, support and advocate for coordinated
patient registries and population studies of
blindness in Ireland
• Support biobanking and gene banking initiatives
• Develop population research into blinding conditions
5) To increase the numbers of Irish patients availing of the latest treatments
and therapies by developing infrastructure for clinical trials in Ireland
• Support the development of European Vision
Institute centres of excellence for Clinical trials
at national ophthalmology centres.
• Foster Ophthalmic Clinical Research Network
• Co-ordinate retinal patient registries in Ireland
6) To raise the National and International profile of Vision Research
Vision Research Institute
Vision Research Institute – Virtual & Actual – Inclusive Model
Key advantages of the Vision Research Institute
• To unify our research portfolio across all organizations / institutes and better
co-ordinate their activities
• To accelerate the gathering and application of patient-relevant scientific
knowledge by commissioning dedicated and strategic research.
• To employ our own teams of dedicated medical, scientific and paramedical
researchers committed to careers in vision research, and to lead global
developments in this field.
• To claim visible ownership and credit for research achievements, to attract
further support for work
• To provide a visible hub for Vision Research in Ireland, just as REMEDI has
done for stem cell research
• To leverage the direct funding invested by Fighting Blindness by winning
significant and sustained external research funding.
Lens-ing Effect / Concentrating
g ht es
Fi n R