Derrek Lee and Boston Celtics CEO and co-owner Wyc Grousbeck have decided to combine their talents to eradicate a disease that has touched both of their families, Lebers Congenital Amaurosis or LCA. They call their effort "Project 3000" because a central part of their plan is to find every man, woman and child affected with LCA in the United States - about 3000 people.
LCA is an inherited form of blindness that is usually apparent shortly after birth. In most cases, affected children are otherwise completely healthy but a subset of children do have other problems such as learning disabilities, autism, seizures, or kidney disease. At least nine different genes are currently known to cause the disease and as a group these genes are responsible for about 70% of all cases. There have been some very exciting developments regarding treatment for LCA. Years of research led to treatments to restore vision in animals with similar disorders and last year (2009) the first human clinical trialsε met with similar success. It is expected that more treatments will soon be ready for testing in human beings and for most of these treatment trials knowledge of the disease-causing gene will be important.
Goals of Project 3000
- Provide Hope
- Provide Accurate Information
- Find the remaining Genes
- Find Cures
- Make a genetic test for LCA available to all who might benefit from one.
Project 3000 has five major partners: Carver Non-profit Genetic Testing Laboratory, The Chicago Cubs, The Boston Celtics, The Foundation for Retinal Research, The Foundation for Fighting Blindness
New LCA Subject Sign Up and Information for Physicians found here: www.carverlab.org/project3000
At this time, we would like to thank all of you who have contributed to this cause. With continued efforts and perseverance we will make great strides in the eradication of LCA.
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