Nationwide study to focus on Fuchs' endothelial corneal dystrophy

May 1, 2006

A nationwide study will research the genetics of Fuchs' endothelialcorneal dystrophy (FECD), which afflicts about 1% of the generalpopulation. Twenty-three sites nationwide will collect data fromFECD patients and their family members, in order for researchers tofurther explore the genetic causes of the disease.

A nationwide study will research the genetics of Fuchs' endothelial corneal dystrophy (FECD), which afflicts about 1% of the general population. Twenty-three sites nationwide will collect data from FECD patients and their family members, in order for researchers to explore the genetic causes of the disease further.

"A complex relationship between genes-not a single gene-is responsible for causing FECD," said Sudha Iyengar, PhD, principal investigator and associate professor of epidemiology, biostatistics, genetics, and ophthalmology at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland. "With this new research initiative, we hope to discover more about the genetic likelihood that would cause an individual to develop the disease."

Investigators from the Vision Research Coordinating Center and the department of epidemiology and biostatistics at University Hospitals of Cleveland and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine will conduct the study, which is funded by a 5-year grant from the National Eye Institute of the National Institutes of Health. The FECD Genetics Multicenter Study will be headquartered at University Hospitals and Case.