AMD pioneer named one of the Nation’s Lifesavers

Posted: Friday 17 May 2019

One of the world’s top eye researchers has joined an elite group after spearheading pioneering treatment which has successfully restored some vision in patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

Professor Pete Coffey has been named as one of the Nation’s Lifesavers, which recognises the top 100 individuals or groups based in universities across the UK whose work is saving lives and making a life-changing difference to our health and wellbeing.

The accolade forms part of Universities UK’s MadeAtUni campaign, which brings to life the impact of universities on families, communities and wider society.

Professor Coffey was chosen for his work as co-leader of the London Project to Cure Blindness. The project is a partnership between Professor Coffey, from University College London, and Professor Lyndon da Cruz, a retinal surgeon at Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

Last year, in a trial partly funded by the Macular Society, two patients who had substantial sight loss caused by wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) had new retinal pigment epithethial (RPE) cells carefully injected into place to ‘patch’ the areas of damage.

After 12 months, one patient, who had been unable to read, could now read more than 47 words per minute. The other, who had previously been able to read less than two words per minute, had improved to more than 80 words per minute.