All residents are encouraged to pursue projects in laboratory or clinical investigation. Research familiarizes the resident with the limitations of laboratory methodology, provides a background for evaluating the literature, helps to develop critical thinking, and allows for a better informed choice for career goals. The type of project is the choice of the resident, and a wide range of opportunities are available. An annual Rosenbaum Research Award of $1,000 is presented to the resident who performs the most exciting research. The department emphasizes basic science research as well as clinical research. Basic science research currently involves five principal areas: Neurobiology, Immunology, Molecular Biology, Pharmacology/Physiology, and Clinical Studies and Outcomes Research. There are many opportunities for research in clinical areas as well.

Research projects offered through faculty members are presented below.

Basic Science Research

  • Dr. Steven Bassnett: Pseudoexfoliation syndrome and glaucoma, refractive development, mouse models of ectopia lentis
  • Dr. Shiming Chen: Development of Novel Therapies for Dominant CRX Disease
  • Dr. Mae Gordon & Dr. Philip Ruzycki: Microbiome assays of normal eyes and eyes presenting with conjunctivitis
  • Dr. Lynn Hassman: Single cell transcriptomics of ocular inflammatory cells in uveitis.
  • Dr. Vladimir Kefalov: Photoreceptor Function Experiments
  • Dr. Peter Lukasiewicz: Synaptic Basis of Retinal Information Processing
  • Dr. Todd Margolis: Regulation of latent infection with herpes simplex virus
  • Dr. Joshua Morgan: Downstream circuit degeneration in mouse glaucoma model

Clinical Research

  • Dr. Anjali Bhorade: Functional Implications for Glaucoma Patients
  • Dr. Steven Couch: Genetic Correlates of Extrascleral Extension in Intraocular Melanomas
  • Dr. Todd Margolis: 1. Clinical studies of patients with ocular GVHD and superior limbic keratoconjunctivitis including role of the ocular surface microbiome. 2. Pathology studies of autonomic innervation of corneal buttons from HSV and VZV patients
  • Dr. Gregory P. Van Stavern: Opportunities in Neuro-Ophthalmology
  • Dr. Vollman: Vision screening for maculopathies

Quality Improvement Research