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Cornea Transplants

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NEWS
August 25, 2010
Researchers have a identified a faulty gene that is the major cause of Fuchs' corneal dystrophy, which affects an estimated 5% of Americans over the age of 40. The condition can ultimately cause blindness by blocking the transmission of light through the cornea. It is responsible for about a quarter of the 42,000 cornea transplants in the United States each year. People with one copy of the mutant gene are 5.5 times as likely to develop Fuchs', while those with two copies are 30 times as likely.
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NEWS
August 25, 2010
Researchers have a identified a faulty gene that is the major cause of Fuchs' corneal dystrophy, which affects an estimated 5% of Americans over the age of 40. The condition can ultimately cause blindness by blocking the transmission of light through the cornea. It is responsible for about a quarter of the 42,000 cornea transplants in the United States each year. People with one copy of the mutant gene are 5.5 times as likely to develop Fuchs', while those with two copies are 30 times as likely.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 17, 1997 | RALPH FRAMMOLINO, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The number of corneas harvested from bodies at the Los Angeles County coroner's office dropped nearly 70% last month under a new policy that requires death investigators to contact family members for permission before removing the eye tissue, statistics released Tuesday show.
HEALTH
September 25, 2006 | Linda Marsa, Special to The Times
THE cornea of the eye seems so simple a structure -- yet it's so important and so tricky to re-create in a lab. It is the eye's protective window, keeping out dirt, debris and germs. It's a lens that helps focus light so that we can see. But when a cornea becomes cloudy or scarred from disease, injury or infection, the path of light into the eye can be distorted or blocked, resulting in blindness. Transplanting human corneas from cadavers can restore someone's vision.
NEWS
December 10, 1999 | TERENCE MONMANEY, TIMES MEDICAL WRITER
Scientists have grown nearly complete human corneas in a laboratory dish for the first time, fashioning a possible new tool to replace animals in some product safety testing and advancing toward an abundant future supply of vital tissue to help restore sight in people. The scientists say the bioengineered tissue has many key properties of a real human cornea, the pupil's transparent covering.
HEALTH
September 25, 2006 | Linda Marsa, Special to The Times
THE cornea of the eye seems so simple a structure -- yet it's so important and so tricky to re-create in a lab. It is the eye's protective window, keeping out dirt, debris and germs. It's a lens that helps focus light so that we can see. But when a cornea becomes cloudy or scarred from disease, injury or infection, the path of light into the eye can be distorted or blocked, resulting in blindness. Transplanting human corneas from cadavers can restore someone's vision.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 13, 1998 | ANN W. O'NEILL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Richard Baltierra sought solace in the family photographs after his only son and namesake took his life with a shotgun two years ago. He would look into the shining brown eyes of the boy he had taken bowling and fishing and ask, "What was going through your mind?" But when Baltierra picked up the report of the autopsy two weeks after the death, he noticed a mysterious notation--"Corneas CGC24791.47."
NEWS
December 7, 1993 | PAT MOTT, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
On the afternoon of Oct. 1, a violent death set in motion a chain of events that ended with a minor medical miracle. Involved in the outcome were ordinary people inextricably linked by grief and hope who would never know one another, and medical professionals who every day deal with death to enhance life. Chance, coincidence, fortunate and tragic circumstance, luck both good and bad, senselessness and selflessness and skill all played their hand.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 30, 1998 | RALPH FRAMMOLINO
The Doheny Eye & Tissue Transplant Bank is conducting an extensive review to determine whether any of the hundreds of corneas it recovered without family permission from the Los Angeles County coroner's office were unfit for transplant.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 22, 1998 | ANN W. O'NEILL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A Superior Court jury ruled Thursday that the county coroner and the Doheny Eye and Tissue Bank followed the law when they took a 17-year-old suicide victim's corneas without asking his parents. But even as the verdicts were being recorded in the closely watched case, jurors issued a rare statement asking officials to change their cornea harvesting practices to be more sensitive to relatives of the dead. The family of Richard Baltierra Jr.
NEWS
July 13, 2000 | KENDALL S. POWELL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
For the first time, researchers have used cells grown in the laboratory to restore vision to people who suffer from conditions that damage the cornea, the clear covering of the eye. In separate reports in today's New England Journal of Medicine and this month's issue of the journal Cornea, researchers in California and Taiwan report that they have successfully improved sight in 15 of 20 patients treated with the procedure.
NEWS
December 10, 1999 | TERENCE MONMANEY, TIMES MEDICAL WRITER
Scientists have grown nearly complete human corneas in a laboratory dish for the first time, fashioning a possible new tool to replace animals in some product safety testing and advancing toward an abundant future supply of vital tissue to help restore sight in people. The scientists say the bioengineered tissue has many key properties of a real human cornea, the pupil's transparent covering.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 22, 1998 | ANN W. O'NEILL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A Superior Court jury ruled Thursday that the county coroner and the Doheny Eye and Tissue Bank followed the law when they took a 17-year-old suicide victim's corneas without asking his parents. But even as the verdicts were being recorded in the closely watched case, jurors issued a rare statement asking officials to change their cornea harvesting practices to be more sensitive to relatives of the dead. The family of Richard Baltierra Jr.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 20, 1998 | ANN W. O'NEILL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The lawyer for the father of a teenage suicide victim urged a Los Angeles Superior Court jury to award $1 million in damages because the county coroner's office and a private tissue bank took the dead boy's corneas despite his father's objection. Attorney Joel Warren told jurors in closing arguments Tuesday that the coroner's office and the Doheny Eye & Tissue Transplant Bank were "driven by the almighty dollar" to take corneas from the dead without asking permission from relatives.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 13, 1998 | ANN W. O'NEILL, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Richard Baltierra sought solace in the family photographs after his only son and namesake took his life with a shotgun two years ago. He would look into the shining brown eyes of the boy he had taken bowling and fishing and ask, "What was going through your mind?" But when Baltierra picked up the report of the autopsy two weeks after the death, he noticed a mysterious notation--"Corneas CGC24791.47."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 1, 1998 | RALPH FRAMMOLINO
The Doheny Eye & Tissue Transplant Bank is conducting an extensive review to determine whether any of the hundreds of corneas it recovered without family permission from the Los Angeles County coroner's office were unfit for transplant.
NEWS
April 5, 1987
A 9 1/2-pound bald eagle received a new cornea in what doctors at the University of California Veterinary Medical Hospital in Davis said they believe was the world's first cornea transplant in a bird. Dr. Mark Mannis said the 75-minute surgery was completed with no complications, but it will be several weeks before doctors know if there are any complications such as tissue rejection. "From a technical standpoint, it was rather routine," Mannis said. Dr.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 30, 1998 | RALPH FRAMMOLINO
The Doheny Eye & Tissue Transplant Bank is conducting an extensive review to determine whether any of the hundreds of corneas it recovered without family permission from the Los Angeles County coroner's office were unfit for transplant.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 14, 1998 | RALPH FRAMMOLINO, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A Los Angeles lawmaker introduced legislation Tuesday aimed at plugging a loophole that had allowed the Los Angeles County coroner's office to harvest thousands of corneas from cadavers without the consent of the next of kin. Democratic state Sen. Richard G. Polanco introduced the bill in response to The Times' disclosure that the coroner used an obscure "implied consent" law to let the Doheny Eye & Tissue Transplant Bank remove corneas from bodies without the knowledge of family members.
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