Strategic Vision Statement: Joan W. Miller, M.D.

Joan Miller, M.D.The “Bold Science,Life-Changing Cures” campaign is carefully designed to infuse resources into our most promising approaches to cure or prevent vision loss, including work pioneered by our Ocular Genomics Institute, Ocular Regenerative Medicine Institute, and seven Harvard Medical School Ophthalmology Centers of Excellence.

Genetic variations lie at the heart of different eye diseases. The Ocular Genomics Institute is harnessing the power of genomics to more accurately diagnose diseases, predict outcomes, and identify specific targets for therapy. Targeted therapies can be matched to a patient's molecular blueprint for a truly personalized approach to treatment. Patients with eye diseases are ideal candidates for gene therapy, and we are working on new methods that have the potential to better treat and possibly cure certain types of blindness.

Our Ocular Regenerative Medicine Institute is conducting clinical trials that transplant stem cells into patients' eyes to rescue dying cells or replace lost cells. For patients living in total darkness, this new therapy can help them gain a level of visual perception that could dramatically improve their lives.

Campaign funds will also be used to bolster our seven Centers of Excellence. These Centers of Excellence draw on the talent of Harvard Medical School's internationally renowned faculty and bring interdisciplinary approaches to bear on key subspecialty areas, including: age-related macular degeneration, corneal disease, glaucoma, mobility enhancement and vision rehabilitation and ocular oncology.

Cures are in sight. Philanthropy plays an important role in giving our scientists the opportunities to pursue promising new directions in these world-class research programs. Funds from the Campaign will, indeed, help translate "Bold Science" into "Life-Changing Cures" as rapidly as possible.