- More than 10 million Americans of every age and race are
affected by vision-robbing retinal degenerative diseases.
- 1 out of 15 people will suffer from vision lose over
the course of their lifetime.
- Every 7 minutes someone becomes blind in the U.S.
- More than 38 million Americans age 40 and
older are blind, visually impaired, or have an age-related eye disease.
- Eye disease and vision loss costs $68 billion each
year in the U.S.
- 200,000 Americans develop age-related macular degeneration
Foundation Fighting Blindness
- The Foundation Fighting Blindness’ urgent mission is to drive the research that will provide
preventions, treatments and cures for people affected by retinitis pigmentosa,
macular degeneration, Usher syndrome, and the spectrum of retinal degenerative
- The Foundation Fighting Blindness was founded in 1971
and has raised more than $400 million in support of its mission. The Foundation
is the largest non-governmental source of research funding for retinal
degenerative disease in the world.
- The Foundation recently realized its greatest
breakthrough when children and young adults who were virtually blind from a
severe retinal disease had vision
restored thanks to landmark gene therapy clinical trials made possible by Foundation
- The Foundation Fighting Blindness is currently funding
138 grants at 76 prominent research institutions. FFB funds pioneering research in a
comprehensive program that includes: cell biology, drug delivery, clinical
& pre-clinical studies, genetics, gene therapy, retinal cell
transplantation, and pharmaceutical and nutritional therapies.
- In addition to its support of research to find
treatments and cures, the Foundation Fighting Blindness provides information
and outreach programs for people affected and their families, as well as research
and clinical professionals.
- The Fighting Blindness Foundation has 50 volunteer-led
groups across the U.S. These dedicated volunteers raise funds, increase public
awareness, and provide support to their communities.
about the Retina
The retina is a thin, delicate layer of tissue lining
the back of the eye. It functions like film in a camera. The retina enables us
to see by converting light into electrical signals which the brain interprets
as images. The light-sensing cells in the retina are known as photoreceptors (rods
and cones). Rods provide peripheral vision and vision in dark settings. Cones
provide central and daytime vision.
Facts about Eye
macular degeneration (AMD) is a retinal degenerative disease that causes a
progressive loss of central vision. AMD is the most common cause of vision loss
in individuals over 55. An estimated 10 million people in the U.S. have AMD.
can learn more about AMD.
pigmentosa (RP) is a group of inherited diseases causing retinal degeneration.
People with RP usually experience a gradual decline in their vision, The
disease starts off causing night blindness and loss of peripheral vision,
eventually robbing people of their central and daytime vision. Forms of RP and related diseases include Usher
syndrome, Leber congenital amaurosis, rod-cone disease, Bardet-Biedl syndrome,
and Refsum disease, among others.
can learn more about RP.
disease is the most common form of inherited juvenile macular degeneration. The
progressive vision loss associated with Stargardt disease is caused by the
death of photoreceptor cells (cones) in the central portion of the retina
called the macula.
central vision is a hallmark of Stargardt disease. Side vision is usually
preserved. Stargardt disease typically develops during childhood and
can learn more about Stargardt disease.
syndrome is an inherited condition characterized by hearing impairment and
progressive vision loss. The vision loss is due to retinitis pigmentosa (RP), a
degenerative condition of the retina, and usually appears during adolescence or
early adulthood. Balance may also be affected. There are three primary types of
Usher syndrome. Symptoms and severity of
disease vary based on the type of Usher syndrome.
can learn more about Usher Syndrome.