Miracles do happen!
When Dale Turner was eight years old, and diagnosed with Leber’s congenital amaurosis, a rare genetic eye disease, the prognosis was bleak. His parents were told that Dale would be completely blind by the age of ten but, at 21 years-old, Dale became the first Canadian to receive an experimental gene therapy treatment that restored some of his vision.
Dale is now able to see colours vividly - like the blue of the sky or the green leaves of a tree. His vision at night has also improved and now, five years after receiving the therapy, he has retained effective vision in the part of his eye that had been treated.
Not letting his vision loss stop him from accomplishing his life’s goals, Dale went on to graduate from Osgoode Hall Law School at York University in 2011.
Dale is proof that investing in research can bring about miracles, and, although It takes time and money, vision can be restored to those living with genetic forms of blindness. Dale says, “My hope is that the gene therapy treatment I received will be available for everyone suffering from vision loss.”
The Foundation Fighting Blindness has continually supported three decades of LCA research in attempt to discover the genes that cause the disease and related retinal conditions. The Foundation Fighting Blindness also supports major projects that are exploring new gene therapies and stem cell treatments – projects that have contributed to a significant advance in worldwide knowledge of retinal conditions.
More research is needed to help those still waiting for treatments and cures. Your support for vision research today will help give the gift of sight to people affected by genetic forms of blindness in the future.
Hear Dale talk about his treatment experience. (Thanks to Accessible Media Inc for the use of this clip from the documentary A Whole New Light).