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Approved Research

Risk assessment, early diagnosis and treatment prediction of age-related diseases using ophthalmic data.

Principal Investigator: Dr Kai Jin
Approved Research ID: 87012
Approval date: September 9th 2022

Lay summary

Aims:This project aims to enable the risk assessment, early diagnosis and treatment prediction of age-related diseases using ophthalmic data.

Scientific rationale: Age-related diseases, including cardiovascular, neuro-degenerative diseases and ophthalmic disorders, are the leading cause of death and major burden of global health system. Assessing risk, diagnosing in early course and predicting prognosis is crucial for highly effective health management. However, current medical examination methods for these diseases are split in several departments of the hospital and some of the common methods are invasive, which promotes the need for novel non-invasive integrated examinations. Ophthalmic examination, including color fundus photograph and optical coherence tomography, provides us with comprehensive and detailed observation of human eyes through non-invasive medical procedure. More than this, the features derived from ophthalmic examination is thought to be linked to multiple systemic clinical conditions. For example, the imaging data of retina enables us to directly observe retinal vessels and analyze the vasculature alterations due to either physiological of pathological changes, such as cardiovascular disease and neuro-degenerative dysfunction. We think there is great promise of adopting multi-modality ophthalmic data for assisting whole course administration and management of major age-related diseases. With the development of statistics, bioinformatics and artificial intelligence, scientists are capable of exploring big data and revealing deeper relationship between genetic, epidemic and clinical features, which lays the ground for preciser risk assessment, earlier diagnosis and more accurate prognosis prediction.

Project duration: 36 months.

Public health impact: This project aims at millions of population who are at the risk of aging-diseases. The non-invasive risk assessment, early diagnosis and prognosis prediction of major diseases through ophthalmic data provides great promise in reducing the socioeconomic burden and improving people's life quality.