Diana Davis Spencer Foundation pledges $5 million to Foundation Fighting Blindness for inherited retinal disease research

Organization makes a commitment to expand translational research acceleration program and fund career development award.

The Foundation Fighting Blindness has announced the launch of the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Enhanced Translational Research Acceleration Program, designed to accelerate the progress of particularly promising preclinical research toward an Investigational New Drug filing that can lead to follow-on investment and clinical trials — providing a robust and diverse pipeline of potential therapies to fight inherited retinal degenerative diseases.

"We are honored by the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation's relentless commitment to supporting the mission of the Foundation Fighting Blindness to find treatments and cures for inherited retinal diseases," Benjamin Yerxa, PhD, chief executive officer, Foundation Fighting Blindness, said in a statement. "This level of investment drives the acceleration of the very best researchers in the retinal field."

According to the foundation, it will develop the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Career Development Award to provide financial support and protected time to conduct clinical research to individuals with MD or MD/PhD degrees. This contribution will facilitate advances in laboratory and clinical research and ultimately lead to a clinical research career in the field of retinal diseases. Research projects and clinical training activities will focus on inherited retinal degenerative diseases.

"We're thrilled to continue our longstanding support for the Foundation Fighting Blindness," Abby Moffat, president and CEO of the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation, said in a statement. "We are proud of their half-century commitment as leaders in retinal research and look forward to the day these diseases are eradicated