A rare inherited disorder causing both blindness and deafness, Usher syndrome is understandably devastating for many families. There are three types of the condition, each causing hearing loss (due to damage to the sensory cells of the inner ear) and retinitis pigmentosa (a slow degeneration of the retina, the light-sensing tissue at the back of the eye). The vision loss, in particular, can begin in early childhood.
Researchers at Mass. Eye and Ear are hard at work on a cure.
Luk Vandenberghe, Ph.D., Director of the Grousbeck Gene Therapy Center at Mass. Eye and Ear, spoke with Kristy Lee of NBC Boston about a gene therapy that may one day help families with Usher syndrome.