ONL’s scientific founder, Dr. David Zacks, is widely considered the world’s leading expert on the role that the Fas pathway plays in apoptosis of key retinal cells, including photoreceptors. Based on his foundational research, the Fas pathway is now broadly understood to mediate death of these retinal cells and act as the most upstream activator of that cell death. Furthermore, his research has directly led to the discovery of unique molecules that are able to effectively block the Fas pathway and prevent the death of the key retinal cells, including photoreceptors.
Retinal Disease Applications
The death of key retinal cells, including photoreceptors, is mediated by the Fas pathway and is responsible for the vision loss associated with a range of retinal diseases and conditions. As such, the therapeutic approach being developed by ONL has broad applicability across some of the largest ocular disease markets. These potential applications for ONL’s vision protection technology include retinal detachment, wet age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD), dry AMD and diabetic retinopathy.
ONL possesses a strong and wide-ranging intellectual property portfolio providing protection of the company’s drug candidates as well as complete and exclusive coverage of the Fas pathway in all ocular diseases and conditions.
This broad patent portfolio has been licensed exclusively from the University of Michigan and the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary.