Mission

The main motivation behind the Barcelona Macula Foundation: Research for Vision is to conduct and support research into diseases of the retina and macula that cause blindness and have no effective treatment, in order to restore or prevent loss of vision. The principal focus of interest is macular and retinal degeneration, such as atrophic age-related macular degeneration (AMD), retinitis pigmentosa and Stargardt’s disease.

Vision

At the BMF we work alongside institutions and corporations linked to the scientific elite to revert vision pathologies which until recently were incurable and to make blindness a problem of the past.

Objectives

Primary

  • Prevent blindness or restore sight.

Secondary

  • To build new therapeutic approaches to macular and retinal degeneration on cellular therapies, tissue engineering and transplantation, and biomaterials applied to these therapies.
  • To promote a better understanding of degenerative diseases of the macula and the retina in the scientific world and in society. The general public, and patients in particular, are a key part of our activities.
  • To become a key player internationally by creating a network for more efficient and focused research.

Optimism. We like this concept.

We are medical researchers committed to the international fight against blindness. Everything leads us to be optimistic. We work with top-flight assistance and research centers and also have the collaboration of institutions, companies and altruistic private donations. The advances achieved in recent years have enabled us to glimpse a near future in which the causes of vision loss and blindness will not condemn patients to living in darkness.

We are in a race against the clock to seek solutions to diseases that affect people who today are losing their eyesight.

This road is full of obstacles, but we already know what it feels like to overcome one: in fact, we are proud to say that we have already mastered the principal cause of legal blindness: wet AMD. It used to cause devastating effects, and now we can halt it. Now we have to keep up the effort to improve its treatments and to achieve solutions for complaints that are still untreatable, such as retinitis pigmentosa or Stargardt’s disease. But we foresee definitive solutions that will allow sufferers to recover their vision, one of the most highly-values treasures for the wellbeing of both young and old.

We do not resign ourselves to anything. We know that achieving these goals is only a matter of time, of insistence, of applying talent and resources. And this is why you find us on this path.

20 years of research, design and conduct of clinical trials for severe loss of vision.

Jordi Monés, MD, PhD


  • Area of Activity
  • Oftalmology
  • Company type
  • Health Biotechnology
Office
Horaci 41-43, Esc. B,
Barcelona, Barcelona 08022, ES
P: +34 93 595 05 38
E:aborrell@barcelonamaculafound.org

BMF Team
Executive Team

Jordi Monés, MD, PhD
David Bellver
Manager
Anna Borrell
Assistant to the Board
Noemí Blanco
Technical Coordinator

Pathologies

According to estimates from the World Health Organization (WHO), in the world there are approximately 39 million blind people and by the year 2020 there will be 90 million. According to the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness, 80% of blind people are aged over 50 years.

AMD

Age-related macular degeneration is the primary cause of sight loss in the western world. It is characterized by the appearance of progressive degenerative lesions in the macula. It is classified into two groups: the wet variant, for which there are already treatments which can slow its progression, and the atrophic variant , on which there are already hopeful lines of research.

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Retinitis Pigmentosa

Retinitis pigmentosa is an eye disorder of a degenerative and hereditary nature that produces a severe deterioration in visual capacity and in many cases leads to blindness. In Spain, it is estimated that some 60,000 people carry the faulty genes responsible.

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Stargardt's disease

Stargardt's disease is the most common macular dystrophy. The incidence stands at around one person affected in every 10,000, and it usually affects adolescents and young people aged under 20 years. The symptoms are blurred vision that lacks sharpness, which hinders the recognition of faces and shapes as well as reading from both close up and from a distance.

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Clinical trials

Clinical trials are the only means of access to the new medicines that are as yet unavailable on the market. At present, there are many incurable eye diseases and research into new techniques and drugs is needed to confirm their efficacy and set out on the path to treatment and cure.

From the outset, BMF’s team has undertaken clinical trials that enable us to research new treatments or new ways of using existing ones in order to cure diseases and rescue patients from vision loss. The BMF, together with the Institut de la Màcula, is currently working on several clinical trials.

Who can take part in these clinical trials?

The access of patients to clinical trials is defined by means of exhaustive assessment of the candidate’s profile and the confirmation that a set of eligibility criteria have been met in order to participate in the study and receive treatment. The medical team will use all this information before giving its final approval.

What are the benefits/risks of taking part in a trial?

Participation in a clinical trial offers patients a series of advantages: the new treatment gives them the chance to receive state-of-the-art medical care from experts. This is, for the time being, also the only means of access to new drugs which are not available to the general public.

Clinical trials are performed in accordance with strict ethical and scientific principles. We at the BMF apply national and international standards and policies in protection of the rights, safety and welfare of participants.

Do patients need to pay?

The patients chosen for clinical trials are not charged for treatment and therefore it is completely free of charge.

How long will the trial last?

The duration will depend on the trial in which patients participate. Generally, this will be between one and two years maximum.

Clinical trials recruiting

If you are interested in taking part in a clinical trial, please call Institut de la Màcula at +34 93 595 01 55 and we will assess whether you are eligible.

Values

  • Innovation

    We seek to incorporate innovative, promising therapeutic strategies for age-related macular degeneration and other diseases of the macula and the retina by associating with national and international academic institutions.

  • Social commitment

    Our responsibility is to society, our sponsors, our colleagues and, above all, our patients.

  • Experience

    The experience gained from both clinical practice and research keeps us in very close touch with the needs and wishes of our patients and their families. Everything we do is for them.

Research projects

Funding requested

Ongoing Projects

European Comission Financed

Other funded projects

BMF Barcelona Macula Foundation: Research for Vision