Promoters for Glaucoma Gene Therapy

Curtis Brandt, PhD Board of Regents of University of Wisconsin

Project Details

Gene therapy may prove to be an ideal form of treatment for diseases with genetic causes because a normal version of a gene could be introduced into cells to restore functions that have been disrupted due to the genetic mutation. If gene therapy is to be used one day for treating forms of glaucoma, two requirements must be met. First, one needs an efficient means, or vector, for placing genes in eye tissues. Second, genetic elements called promoters are required that will allow the therapeutic gene to be specifically turned on in the appropriate cell type (e.g., TM cells). Dr. Brandt has already attained the first goal and is now focused on identifying TM cell-specific promoters.