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New Treatments for Retinitis Pigmentosa

By: Reena Mukamal Reviewed By: Ninel Z Gregori, MD and Christine Nichols Kay, MD

Hope may be on the horizon for people with retinitis pigmentosa, a rare inherited eye disease with no cure. Existing treatments only help a fraction of the estimated 100,000 Americans with this condition. But advances in gene therapy may soon help restore vision to a greater number of people.

Retinitis pigmentosa causes light-detecting cells in the retina to break down over time, destroying vision. Mutations in more than 60 different genes can contribute to this condition.

“If you are diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, it’s vital to undergo genetic testing to identify your underlying mutation," says Ninel Gregori, M.D., an Academy member and a professor of clinical ophthalmology at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute.


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