Walking for Sight!

Alex Garanto
van totaal € 400 (5%)


Zicht is een van de belangrijkste zintuigen van de mens. Het stelt ons in staat om te weten wat er om ons heen gebeurt, gezichten te herkennen, spullen in de supermarkt te vinden, enzovoort. Meer dan 5,5 miljoen mensen worden getroffen door erfelijke netvliesaandoeningen, en meer dan 180 miljoen mensen lijden aan andere soorten visuele problemen.

Om de race naar een behandeling te ondersteunen, zijn fondsenwervende activiteiten een geweldige bondgenoot voor zichtbaar maken van deze complexe medische aandoeningen. Al vele jaren werkt onze onderzoeksgroep (Collin en Garanto lab, www.collin-garanto-lab.com) aan het Radboudumc aan de ontwikkeling van moleculaire therapieën voor verschillende zeldzame ziekten, waaronder erfelijke netvliesaandoeningen.


Vision is one of the most important senses in human. It allow us to know what is going on around us, recognize faces, find stuff at the supermarket, etc. Over 5.5 million people affected by inherited retinal diseases, and more than 180 million people suffer from other type of vision loss problems.

In order to help the race for a treatment, fundraising activities are a great ally for supporting the cause and giving visibility to this complex situation. For many years, our research group (Collin and Garanto lab, www.collin-garanto-lab.com) at Radboudumc  has been working on the development of molecular therapies for several rare diseases, including inherited retinal diseases.

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The challenging race towards a cure for blindness

28-05-2024 | 11:28 In 2022, several members of our group and I walked the 4daagse together. At that time, Dr. Nuria Suárez-Herrera made a nice comparison between the 4 day marches and the development of treatments. The marches The 4 day marches usually starts off with many registered participants, some people may not show up, some will give up, but most of them will take the chance to start walking on the first day. The second and the third day are now way more challenging for your mind and body. Since you have accumulated more mental and physical fatigue from the previous days, it might end up affecting your motivation as well. Once completed, it does not mean you will easily make it until the end, but you are already aware of the walking strategy that worked the best for you. However, the last day of the marches is also the final challenge to prove that you were able to maintain a good physical endurance with minor injuries until the end. If successfully finished, walkers receive gladiola flowers and military medal as a token for their huge achievement. The development of therapies All of the above is something comparable to what happens during race for therapeutic development. First, discoveries of potential treatments appear at the preclinical phases. Most of them will have the chance to go through initial testing in the laboratory, but several will drop during this stage. In fact, this can take a long time before entering the first phase of the clinical trial. Here, safety of the potential treatment is checked to make sure it doesn’t do any damage in healthy individuals. We are now halfway through it, great!  Since the potential therapy overcame the testing period and safety needs, that means we can move to the second clinical trial phase. At the end of this stage, it will be determined whether the treatment has any side effects. Basically, confirming if the followed strategy for the therapy is good enough to continue to the next phase.  Almost there. After all the time and effort invested in the previous clinical trial phases, we can proceed to the third phase. This last stage checks if the therapy works while still being safe for the patients. In the case of successful therapies, the equivalent “medal” or “gladiola” would be the approval by regulatory agencies, allowing them to be safely implemented as treatment for people. Your support In summary, it is clear that therapeutic development for any disease, including inherited retinal diseases, is a long way to go. Most of the times, it is a tedious process that requires both time and money, where many ideas, unfortunately, cannot complete the full race. Therefore, the longer it takes to finish the whole process, the longer the delay will be for people already suffering from inherited retinal diseases. In collaboration with Oogfonds, we also aim to increase visibility of inherited retinal diseases and the importance of slowing down blindness progression. Therefore, we would like to encourage everyone to become more aware of the complex situation for rare diseases. You are welcome to read more about our research (www.garanto-collin-lab.com) but more importantly, by clicking on this link (https://www.devierdaagsesponsorloop.nl/fundraisers/alexgaranto), you can perhaps take action. Any effort or contribution can help! Your support not only encourages walkers, but also the challenging race towards successful treatment options to cure blindness.
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