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Thirty Years, Thirty Innovations

Founded in 1978, the Glaucoma Research Foundation celebrated our 30th year in 2008. Here are 30 research innovations GRF has brought to the field of glaucoma.

1978 GRF founded to encourage pioneering research to improve glaucoma treatments

1978 Shaffer Glaucoma Fellowship established by GRF founder to inspire young ophthalmologists to study glaucoma

1984 Low Tension Glaucoma Seminar brought together worldwide researchers

1986 GRF convened International Seminar on the Developmental Glaucomas

1993 Glaucoma Research Catalyst Meetings stimulated glaucoma research internationally

1994 Glaucoma Research and Education Group established to continue Dr. Shaffer’s tradition of clinical research

1995 Report from GRF-funded researchers leads to potential new glaucoma medication

1996 www.glaucoma.org launched as a resource for patients and researchers

1997 GRF-funded researchers collaborated on study that leads to first genetic breakthrough — isolation of the TIGR gene, responsible for some forms of glaucoma

1997 Optic nerve abnormalities studied in patients with ocular hypertension

1997 Genetics of POAG studied in Family History Project

1998 GRF-funded researchers identified gene linked to early-onset glaucoma

1998 Catalyst Meeting studied retinal ganglion cell death in glaucoma

1998 Collaborative Normal Tension Glaucoma Study is the first multi-center clinical trial to document that lowering eye pressure preserves vision

1998 GRF survey revealed low public awareness of glaucoma risk factors, even in high-risk groups

1999 GRF-funded researchers identified gene that can cause Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma

1999 Autoantibodies found that may lead to optic nerve head damage

1999 Researcher regenerates damaged optic nerve through macrophage activation

2001 GRF-funded researcher demonstrates that vaccination with compound may protect the optic nerve

2001 Researcher reports induction of heat shock protein 72 protects retinal ganglion cells

2002 Optimedin gene identified as candidate gene for retinal disorders

2002 Catalyst For a Cure (CFC) collaborative research program commenced

2003 CFC scientists verified process for isolating genes in glaucoma

2003 CFC research indicates glaucoma is a disease of the central nervous system

2005 CFC researchers reported three new hypotheses for how glaucoma is initiated

2005 CFC scientists found evidence suggesting molecular pathways to target for intervention

2006 CFC demonstrated that microglia may protect against vision loss

2006 CFC studies indicate glaucoma shares common characteristics with other neurological disorders

2007 GRF-funded researcher reported people with glaucoma six times more likely to be involved in car accidents

2007 GRF-funded scientists made 20 presentations at major eye research meeting

Last reviewed on February 16, 2017

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