Aniridie is a rare but very serious inherent eye disease which is difficult to treat. The iris of the affected is incomplete or has not been formed at all during pregnancy, additionally, patients often suffer from a vascularized, dull cornea. It is not seldom that patient has a deformity of their retina, both can cause blindness if not treated properly.
The European Union (EU) supports within the European Cooperation in Science and Technology – Program (COST) the project Aniridia-net from 2019 to 2023 in order to get a better understanding and to develop new therapeutic options.
Aniridai-Net is a European wide bottom-up- network including scientist, ophthalmologists, interns, Aniridie – patient organisation, industry and special groups of interest conducted by Univ. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Claus Cursiefen, Chairman, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Cologne and Prof. Dr. Neil Lagali, University Linköping in Sweden.
The objective of this program is to improve the clinical management of the disease, support of innovative science, as well as the development of new alternatives for diagnostic and therapy. A great focus of research lies within the stem cell studies which along with other research fields complement the DFG Research Unit FOR 2240 at the Department of Ophthalmology at the University Hospital of Cologne.