The Mary Tyler Moore Vision Initiative seeks to preserve and restore vision in people with diabetes.
Diabetic Retinal Disease (DRD) is the number one cause of blindness in working-age adults worldwide. Globally, more than 50 million people suffer from vision-threatening retinal disease due to their diabetes.
While Mary did not make it to see a cure, The Mary Tyler Moore Vision Initiative, which seeks to PRESERVE and RESTORE vision in people with diabetes, continues Mary’s vital work as it honors her legacy.
Capitalizing on today’s highly-advanced biomedical technologies and unique resources and tools, Mary’s Vision Initiative seeks to create a world without vision loss from diabetes by innovating along the entire journey from laboratory discovery, to new treatment development, to validating new ways to diagnose retina disease, early, so it can be stopped before threatening vision, to the delivery of new therapies to people who can benefit.
Our efforts include:
Understanding the full spectrum of the disease’s impact on those who live with it—at 40+ years old, the existing severity scale for DRD is outdated and incorrectly focuses only on the vascular component, ignoring nerve, visual function, quality-of-life, and other components of the disease.
Establishing a cutting-edge human eye tissue biobank exclusively for DRD research. The biobank will have impeccably preserved and stored samples that can be shared with collaborating researchers around the world, and are suitable for advanced analysis to give insights into the cellular and molecular basis of DRD.
Organizing a public-private consortium to use the data generated by research undertaken by biobank collaborating scientists to identify new molecular targets for therapeutics development. This will accelerate design, testing, and delivery of new treatments to preserve and restore vision in people with diabetes.
Creating and sustaining a comprehensive digital image library with millions of retinal images matched with health records that can help support research, improve criteria for diagnosis, and identify new opportunities for therapy development and improved clinical care.
Fostering real-time information sharing and collaboration among top global experts in academia, pharma, and clinical care.
Improving prospects for regulatory approval of new therapies.
Advancing the standard of care for people with diabetes through new methods to PRESERVE and RESTORE visual function.
The Initiative is a joint effort of JDRF, The Mary Tyler Moore and S. Robert Levine, MD Charitable Foundation, and the Elizabeth Weiser Caswell Diabetes Institute (CDI) at the University of Michigan.
Mary believed anything was possible…
Help realize her dream of a world without vision loss from diabetes.