• By Anni Griswold
    Comprehensive Ophthalmology, Glaucoma, Neuro-Ophthalmology/Orbit, Pediatric Ophth/Strabismus, Retina/Vitreous

    A weekly roundup of ophthalmic news from around the web.

    Virtual reality could offer a reliable and objective assessment of visual field loss in glaucoma patients. The NGoggle wearable device (shown above) monitors peripheral vision loss and glaucoma progression without relying on patient feedback. The goggles use light to stimulate areas of the visual field while recording the brain’s responses using wireless EEG sensors. With funding from the National Eye Institute, Duke University researchers are testing the device’s diagnostic accuracy and reproducibility during various disease stages. National Eye Institute

    The FDA had a record year in 2018: The agency approved 106 novel devices, breaking the previous record of 99 device approvals in 2017. Last year’s list includes approvals for an AI device for detecting diabetic retinopathy, the Hydrus microstent for primary open-angle glaucoma and the first artificial iris in the United States. U.S. Food and Drug Administration

    A Nashville-based startup is screening kids’ eyes with an app instead of a $20,000 device,
    Bloomberg reported this week. GoCheck Kids is the first iPhone app registered with the FDA to screen children for vision impairment with a simple photo. Since the app launched last year, 4,000 pediatricians in 43 states have used it to screen 900,000 kids. Gobiquity has raised $20 million from investors, including Salesforce founder Marc Benioff. Bloomberg Businessweek

    Nanoscope is pressing forward with optogenetic treatments for retinal dystrophies, thanks to multiple grants, including an RO1 and Phase II SBIR, from the National Eye Institute. Last year, the FDA granted orphan drug designation status to the company’s multi-characteristic opsin, which photosensitizes the retina via a single intravitreal. The goal? Restoring vision in patients with retinal dystrophies in ambient light. EurekAlert!

    Five years after thymus surgery, patients with myasthenia gravis continue to reap benefits, researchers reported in The Lancet Neurology this week. Patients with the condition who underwent thymectomy experienced fewer functional limitations, used less immunosuppressive medication and required fewer hospitalizations to address disease progression. These benefits, in turn, are likely to cut health care costs. University at Buffalo