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European Consortium for the Early Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy (EUROCONDOR)
Start date: Mar 1, 2012, End date: Jun 30, 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Diabetic retinopathy (DR), the leading cause of blindness among working-age individuals in developed countries has been classically considered to be a microcirculatory disease of the retina. However, there is growing evidence to suggest that retinal neurodegeneration is an early event in the pathogenesis of DR. For this reason, it is reasonable to hypothesize that therapeutic strategies based on neuroprotection will be effective not only in preventing or arresting retinal neurodegeneration but also in preventing the development and progression of the early stages of DR (ie. microaneurysms and/or retinal thickness).EUROCONDOR (European Consortium for the Early Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy) is a solid and well balanced consortium (ophthalmologists, endocrinologists, basic researchers) which has been created in order to implement the first clinical trial using eye drops for treatment of the early stages of DR. The participants are top leaders in their field and central readings will be performed by the Coordinating Centre of the European Vision Institute Clinical Research Network (EVICR.Net).The main objectives of the project are the following:Primary objective: To assess whether the selected neuroprotective drugs (brimonidine and somatostatin) administered topically are able to prevent or arrest neurodegeneration, as well as the development and progression of the early stages of DR.Secondary objectives: 1) To determine the prevalence of functional abnormalities related to neurodegeneration in those patients without or with minimal microvascular damage under ophthalmoscopic examination. 2) To compare the effectiveness of the selected drugs. 3) To evaluate the local and systemic adverse effects of the selected drugs. 4) To identify those patients most prone to progressive worsening (characterization of phenotypes and circulating biomarkers). 5) To determine the molecular mechanisms by which the selected drugs exert their beneficial effects.
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