In recent years, biomedicine witnessed a wealth of breakthrough discoveries, technologies, and concepts. The four cornerstones of progress are discoveries in human and animal genetics and genetic engineering, the development of patient-derived organ models, the understanding of the physiology of complex tissues, and the development of technologies to target specific cell types with biological or chemical materials. The eye has been at the forefront of these developments, and is also at the forefront of turning these developments into innovative therapies.
Our goal is to develop gene therapy for Stargardt disease type 1, the commonest form of juvenile inherited macular degeneration, by combining magnetic nanoparticles with viral vectors to develop magnetic force assisted intravitreal viral delivery for concentrating viral vectors on photoreceptors. We then intend to further develop the technology for the engineering of intelligent and programmable nanoparticles for remote health control.