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Research to Prevent Blindness

Grants Database

Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB) provides grants to high-performing U.S.-based departments of ophthalmology and to their high-potential investigators. Use our Grants Database to learn more. Award amounts for some grants are distributed over multiple years.

How to use the Grants Database

Refine your search by using the filter at left. Search by setting a date range, or filter your results by institution, research area keyword, or awardee.  Sort the table by clicking on any column header.  

Learn about an institution or individual by clicking on a name.

Learn about RPB-supported work by clicking on the text link "Research funded by this award," which will take you to our Research Database where you can refine and/or expand a search for published studies. (Note: In some cases this link will not be available because a researcher may have only recently received an award and has yet to publish findings.)

RPB Grant Awards from 2018 & 2019

46 Awards ($9,805,000)

RPB Grant Type
Year
Award
Research Area
Awardee
Institution
Career Development Award 2019 $300,000 Retina Al Diri, Issam / PhD University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
Proposes to study the regulatory mechanisms that control retinal development with the goal of creating therapeutic strategies for microphthalmia (small eye), a disease that results from disrupted retinal development and currently has no cure.
Career Development Award 2019 $300,000 Retina Clark, Brian / PhD Washington University in Saint Louis School of Medicine
Will explore how gene expression is regulated and governs cell type specification during retinal development.
Career Development Award 2019 $300,000 Immunology, Microbiology Fuller, Kevin K. / PhD University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
Will study the biology of fungal corneal ulcers—a major source of blindness worldwide—with the long-term goal of developing novel antifungal therapies.
Career Development Award 2019 $300,000 Glaucoma Herberg, Samuel / PhD State University of New York Upstate Medical University
Will create an artificial model of the trabecular meshwork (TM)—a part of the eye involved in maintaining proper intraocular pressure—in order to better develop and screen new glaucoma therapies.
Career Development Award 2019 $300,000 Diabetic Retinopathy, Retina Sachdeva, Mira Menon / MD, PhD Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Will study the detrimental effects of diabetes on retinal neurons—an understudied area.
Catalyst Award for Innovative Research Approaches for Age-Related Macular Degeneration 2019 $300,000 AMD Fuhrmann, Sabine / PhD Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
Will examine the potential of retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells to regenerate in mature mammalian eyes via specific signaling pathways.
Catalyst Award for Innovative Research Approaches for Age-Related Macular Degeneration 2019 $300,000 AMD jablonski-monica-m-phd-farvo University of Tennessee Health Science Center
Will develop polygenetic models of AMD in order to better study disease pathogenesis and test innovative therapies.
Catalyst Award for Innovative Research Approaches for Age-Related Macular Degeneration 2019 $300,000 AMD lakkaraju-aparna-phd University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine
Will study retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cell damage (a known precursor to AMD), with the goal of learning about the mechanisms that initiate RPE damage and subsequently relate these processes to the onset of AMD.
Catalyst Award for Innovative Research Approaches for Age-Related Macular Degeneration 2019 $300,000 AMD Schey, Kevin L. / PhD Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
Will develop a new tool for AMD diagnosis by adding molecular information to routine optical coherence tomography (OCT) scans.
Disney Award for Amblyopia Research 2019 $100,000 Amblyopia, Neuro-Ophthalmology, Strabismus, Visual Neuroscience Fine, Ione / PhD University of Washington School of Medicine
Will characterize three separate visual phenomena (loss of visual acuity, flattening of monocular contrast response and binocular suppression) to test the hypothesis that “amblyopia” may actually be three separate visual function deficits.
Low Vision Research Award 2019 $300,000 Low Vision, Visual Neuroscience, Visual Psychophysics Kwon, MiYoung / PhD University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine
Will study how different types of visual impairment affect people’s ability to perform common visual function tasks.
Medical Student Eye Research Fellowship 2019 $30,000 Retina Chen, Jimmy Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine
Conducting research at Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine.
Medical Student Eye Research Fellowship 2019 $300,000 Anatomy, Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Pharmacology, Physiology Lee, John Yohan University of Miami Miller School of Medicine
Conducting research at University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.
RPB International Research Collaborators Award 2019 $75,000 Glaucoma Gregory-Ksander, Meredith / PhD Harvard Medical School
Will test a novel treatment for glaucoma aimed at inhibiting the “NLRP3 inflammasome,” which becomes activated during glaucoma and contributes to harmful inflammation of the optic nerve head.
Special Grant 2019 $125,000 Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology
AUPO is a key ally in RPB's commitment to enrich the development of the Chairs, Directors of Research, and other leaders from departments of ophthalmology.
Special Scholar Award 2019 $125,000 Glaucoma, Retina, Retinal Cell Biology Kuwajima, Takaaki / PhD University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
Proposes to identify new molecular targets for retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axon death—one of the earliest molecular changes linked to optic nerve injury and glaucoma.
Stein Innovation Award 2019 $300,000 Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Retina Pierce, Eric A. / MD, PhD Harvard Medical School
Will identify biomarkers that can be used to help measure treatment response in patients with inherited retinal degenerations (IRDs).
Stein Innovation Award 2019 $300,000 Anatomy, Ocular Oncology, Pathology, Retina Toth, Cynthia A. / MD Duke University School of Medicine
Will build and apply an easy-access device that allows clinicians to view microvascular blockage and injury in a patient’s eyes when they are in the hospital after heart surgery with heart-lung bypass.
Career Development Award 2018 $300,000 Retina Campbell, J. Peter / MD, MPH Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine
Will develop quantitative metrics to monitor the earliest onset and pace of disease in retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), a leading cause of childhood blindness worldwide.
Career Development Award 2018 $300,000 Retina Lee, Aaron Y. / MD, MSCI University of Washington School of Medicine
Proposes to pinpoint imaging biomarkers for age-related macular degeneration (AMD) that can be used as surrogate endpoints for clinical trials.
Career Development Award 2018 $300,000 Retinal Cell Biology Martinez-De Luna, Reyna I. / PhD State University of New York Upstate Medical University
Will elucidate the molecular mechanisms of the development of retinal ganglion cell (RGC)-based diseases.
Career Development Award 2018 $300,000 Cornea Myung, David / MD, PhD Stanford University School of Medicine
Aims to develop a sutureless, injectable corneal tissue substitute that stabilizes deep wounds of the cornea.
Medical Student Eye Research Fellowship 2018 $30,000 Glaucoma Gomez-Caraballo, Maria Duke University School of Medicine
Conducting research at Duke University School of Medicine.
Medical Student Eye Research Fellowship 2018 $30,000 Visual Neuroscience Hall, Leo Wayne State University School of Medicine
Conducting research at Wayne State University School of Medicine.
Physician-Scientist Award 2018 $300,000 Cornea Djalilian, Ali / MD University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine
Proposes to develop a novel regenerative therapy for corneal and ocular surface diseases via exosomes, or extracellular vesicles, which are “packages” of biologic “goodies” secreted by stem cells.
Physician-Scientist Award 2018 $300,000 Glaucoma Frankfort, Benjamin J. / MD, PhD Baylor College of Medicine
Will test the hypothesis that normal serotonin signaling is disrupted in glaucoma, and/or that the pharmacologic enhancement of serotonin signaling in patients with glaucoma prevents or reduces neuron injury.
RPB/SNF International Research Collaborators Award 2018 $75,000 Retina Kador, Karl / PhD University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Medicine
Propose to develop an advanced human retinal organoid model with two components that are missing in in vitro human stem cells: a nerve fiber layer containing retinal ganglion cell axons and a vasculature.
RPB/SNF International Research Collaborators Award 2018 $75,000 Clinical, Epidemiologic Merbs, Shannath L. / MD, PhD Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Will study a newly developed surgical procedure for lower eyelid trachomatous trichiasis, a condition in which the eyelashes turn into the eye and cause scarring and blindness, and for which there is currently no standard treatment.
Stein Innovation Award 2018 $300,000 Retina, Visual Neuroscience Chichilnisky, E.J. / PhD Stanford University School of Medicine
Proposes to lay the foundation for the creation of an artificial retina that can match or exceed the normal biological function of the retina, thereby providing an effective treatment for vision loss from blinding diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration.
Stein Professorship/Extension 2018 $250,000 Anatomy, Cornea, Lens, Retina Zhang, Xin / PhD Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons
Aims to uncover the molecular interactions that cause growth factor signaling (which helps cells to communicate and perform their intended functions) during eye development.
Career Development Award 2018 $300,000 Visual Neuroscience Morgan, Joshua / PhD Washington University in Saint Louis School of Medicine
Proposes to identify structural impediments to the regeneration of visual connections, which are lost in diseases like glaucoma when there is damage to the retinal ganglion cell axons that travel through the optic nerve to connect with the brain.
Career Development Award 2018 $300,000 Clinical, Epidemiologic Oldenburg, Catherine / ScD, MPH University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine
Will evaluate an alternative antibiotic (azithromycin) distribution strategy that involves intensive treatment of children with active trachoma, the world’s leading infectious cause of blindness, in addition to the World Health Organization (WHO) annual mass azithromycin distribution, compared to the WHO strategy alone.
Career Development Award 2018 $300,000 Retinal Cell Biology Pearring, Jillian / PhD The Regents of the University of Michigan School of Medicine
Will explore defects in protein trafficking to the light-sensing outer segment of photoreceptors, which are responsible for capturing light and generating a visual signal.
Low Vision Research Award 2018 $150,000 Low Vision Dougherty, Bradley E. / OD, PhD The Ohio State University
Proposes to integrate features for low vision rehabilitation into an existing head-mounted tablet device, the RealWear HMT-1, and then test the device’s ability to help people with low vision read text and navigate in an unfamiliar building.
Low Vision Research Award 2018 $150,000 Low Vision Ender, Tekin / PhD University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine & Public Health
Developing an affordable, portable system to improve access to presentations and lecture notes for students and professionals with low vision.
Low Vision Research Award 2018 $300,000 Low Vision, Retina Yuan, Alex / MD, PhD Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of CWRU
Will assess biomarkers of visual recovery in patients with the Argus II retinal prosthesis using functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
Medical Student Eye Research Fellowship 2018 $30,000 Retina Luo, Shiming Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of CWRU
Conducting research at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine.
Medical Student Eye Research Fellowship 2018 $30,000 Retinal Cell Biology Schultz, Hannah University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Conducting research at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.
RPB/SNF International Research Collaborators Award 2018 $75,000 Glaucoma Chan, Kevin C. / PhD New York University School of Medicine
Will develop a novel model of experimental (mouse) glaucoma to allow researchers to better study neurodegeneration and neuroprotection of the visual system and, ultimately, to better test potential therapeutics.
Special Grant 2018 $165,000 Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology
AUPO is a key ally in RPB's commitment to enrich the development of the Chairs, Directors of Research, and other leaders from departments of ophthalmology.
Special Scholar Award 2018 $55,000 Clinical, Epidemiologic Eghrari, Allen / MD, MPH Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
Will develop clinical and genetic characterizations of Fuchs dystrophy, a corneal disease that impacts vision, in African Americans, who have been shown to have unique features of the disease.
Special Scholar Award 2018 $60,000 Glaucoma Hu, Yang / PhD Stanford University School of Medicine
Will investigate possible commonalities between genes associated with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and glaucoma, specifically with regard to the genes’ roles in axon degeneration and retrograde neuronal cell death.
Special Scholar Award 2018 $75,000 Biochemistry, Glaucoma, Molecular Biology Skowronska-Krawczyk, Dorota / PhD University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine
Proposes to counteract the expression of a specific age-related gene in eyes with glaucoma to better understand the gene’s impact on tissue and to aid in the development of novel strategies for the treatment of glaucoma.
Stein Innovation Award 2018 $300,000 Glaucoma Calkins, David J. / PhD Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
Will explore whether using novel forms of gene therapy can boost energy sharing between astrocytes and ganglion cell axons to maintain signaling along the optic nerve and preserve vision (independent of ocular pressure) in glaucoma.
Stein Innovation Award 2018 $300,000 Cornea Dana, Reza / MD, MSc, MPH Harvard Medical School
Will develop a biomaterial for replacement and regeneration of the cornea that does not require surgery.
Stein Innovation Award 2018 $300,000 Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Retinal Cell Biology Nachury, Maxence / PhD University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine
Will utilize a precision medicine strategy to ameliorate Bardet-Biedl Syndrome (BBS), the second most common inherited syndromic retinal degeneration, by targeting its molecular root. Will also test for the existence of a novel pathway, the ciliary stress response, which may be responsible for eliciting photoreceptor death in BBS patients.

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