Did you know that obesity is the second most important environmental risk factor for wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD)? At the FFB, we are very proud to be funding Dr. Mike Sapieha, who is leading a study to understand how high-fat diets may impact the progression of dry AMD to the more severe, “wet” form of the disease. To do this, Dr. Sapieha is exploring how the microbes of our body (the microbiome) affect obesity, the body’s immune response, and ultimately the progression of AMD. By studying new wet AMD pathways, he aims to identify new therapeutic targets for the disease.
Thanks to the FFB’s generous donors, we are providing Dr. Sapieha with $240,000 over 3 years to support his research about the connections between wet AMD and high-fat diets. We are absolutely thrilled to report that his research is gaining attention on the world stage! In 2019, Dr. Sapieha will be awarded the prestigious Cogan Award from the ARVO (Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology).
ARVO is the largest and most respected eye and vision research organization in the world. Its membership includes nearly 12,000 researchers from over 75 countries across the globe.
The Cogan Award was established in 1988 to commemorate Dr. David G. Cogan, for his outstanding leadership and commitment to advancing the understanding of the causes, mechanisms, and treatment of human eye disease.
This award is intended to recognize a young researcher who is 45 years of age or younger at the time of nomination, and who has made important and worthwhile contributions to research in ophthalmology or visual science that are directly related to disorders of the human eye or visual system, and who show substantial promise for future contributions. The recipient presents the Cogan Award Lecture at the ARVO Annual Meeting! We can hardly wait for next year’s ARVO meeting!
Dr. Sapieha is the Wolfe Professor of translational vision research and Canada Research Chair in retinal cell biology at the Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital Research Centre of the University of Montreal. The FFB is currently funding his research into high-fat diets and AMD, but we are proud long-time supporters of Dr. Sapieha. You can read more about Dr. Sapieha’s incredible research in the FFB research news archives – we’ve collected some of the more recent stories for you here.
Congratulations, Dr. Sapieha!!