Hyderabad: Genome Foundation (GF) and LV Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI) have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for Ocular Genetic Research and Clinical Care.

The MoU was signed by GF Board of Directors Chairman and Economist Dr. C Rangarajan and LVPEI Board of Trustees Chair Dr. Gullapalli N Rao to foster collaborative research, training, and knowledge sharing, the Institute said in a release here on Monday.

Under the agreement, both the institutions will share expertise and resources to expand their capabilities in ophthalmic clinical genetics, molecular genetics, cytogenetic, forensic testing services, research, diagnostics, counseling, training, education, and other similar services. The overarching aim is to develop facilities for research, diagnostics, and counseling, ophthalmic clinical, and other services that will greatly benefit patients suffering from vision impairment and blindness.

The focus will be on better, advanced, and economical treatment plans to treat basic and complex ocular disorders. On the occasion, the foundation said that it will develop a state-of-the-art facility at Medipally Village in Malkajigiri district on the outskirts of the city for the specified purpose and both the institutions will work closely to raise funds and resources to develop these facilities.

"This collaboration is between two intellectual institutes and this will be a springboard for much greater interactions as we move forward, the release said. The focus will be on identifying the genetic eye disorders and genetic intervention to treat those disorders, and creating awareness about them in the public and eye care community at large," Dr. Rangarajan said.

Dr. Rao said their focus is on developing Institutes of Excellence in the next 20 years. "One such area is genetics in eye care and ophthalmology. We have been working in this area for quite some time and this partnership will further strengthen the ongoing efforts. We thank Genome Foundation for this partnership and look forward to making significant strides in this field of eye care that will benefit the community at large - both urban and rural," he said.

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