The Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Yissum Research Development Company has developed a novel method to diagnose retinal micro-aneurysms that pose a high risk for leakage, a primary cause of diabetic retinopathy.
Patented by Yissum, this method offers early diagnosis and treatment of the condition, which enables in saving vision.
A group of scientists including Dr. Yaakov Nahmias from the Center for Bioengineering at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem developed a computational method based on fluid dynamics in order to identify microvascular regions with high risk of leakage, which will help ophthalmologists in identifying microaneurysms with high leakage risk by using adaptive optics.
According to the team, the high risk is correlated with increased level of a protein called Von Willebrand factor (vWF), which is linked with early development of diabetic retinopathy.
Yissum CEO Yaacov Michlin said: "The novel method developed by Nahmias will allow experts to rapidly identify and treat those microaneurysms that pose a high-risk of leakage, minimizing edema and saving vision. Moreover, the scientists open the route for targeted therapy or clinical detection using vWF, which they show serves as a protein marker for risky regions in the retina.
"By enabling early detection of high-risk areas, treatment of diabetic retinopathy can shift from a reactive treatment to a preventive one, not only preventing blindness but also saving millions of dollars in medical costs," added Michlin.