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A Flurry of Activity to Close Out The Year

2023-02-04 09:12:08

Dear friends and colleagues,

It seems hard to believe that we are nearing the end of 2022. While we are still dealing with the effects of the pandemic, as this issue demonstrates that hasn’t stopped the impressive Wilmer team from pursuing their tripartite mission of education, research and patient care.

Wishing you and yours all the best in the new year,

Peter J. McDonnell, M.D.


Featured Articles

Wilmer Faculty to Present on Range of Topics at EyeCon 2022

Ophthalmology Times’ EyeCon 2022 will take place Dec. 16-17 in Marco Island, Florida. We spoke to four Wilmer faculty members who will be presenting during the hybrid conference for insights into what they’ll be sharing. Click on the links below to find out:

Esen Akpek, M.D.Bendann Family Professor of Ophthalmology

Award-Winning (Tear) Film: Treating Dry Eye Disease


Two Receive Clinical Investigator Certification

Wilmer optometrists Katharine Funari, O.D., M.P.H. and Kelly Seidler, O.D. recently completed the American Academy of Optometry Clinical Investigator Certification Program. The eight-week course is designed to teach skills required to conduct rigorous sponsored clinical trials within the practice setting.


Evaporative Dry Eye: What You Need To Know

As an optometrist, Lauren Gormley, O.D. provides comprehensive eye care to patients at Wilmer Eye Institute’s Green Spring Station location, but she also specializes in a condition that is getting increasing attention these days: evaporative dry eye.


In the Spotlight

Construction Begins on New Kashani Lab

Work is underway to construct a new Kashani Lab at Wilmer, which is expected to open in 2023. Amir Kashani, M.D., Ph.D., the Boone Pickens Professor of Ophthalmology, and his interdisciplinary team conduct research to detect early stages of retinal vascular disease. Learn more about the Kashani Lab.


Ensign Presents on Research as French Minister Visits JHU

Laura Ensign, Ph.D., the Marcella E. Woll Professor of Ophthalmology, was among those who presented on their translational research efforts to Sylvie Retailleau (in photo, bottom right), Minister of Higher Education and Research of France, during Retailleau’s recent visit to Johns Hopkins University. The visit included a tour of the Robert H. and Clarice Smith Building. Learn more about research at Wilmer.

Photos: Heloïse Therrat, Science Office, Embassy of France

Envisioning Equity in Eye Care

The inaugural Envisioning Equity in Eye Care, a virtual conference sponsored by the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), was held Nov. 16–17. Researchers, clinicians and community leaders examined the social and environmental factors fueling disparities within the U.S. health system and discussed solutions. Megan Collins, M.D., M.P.H., the Allan and Claire Jensen Professor of Ophthalmology, presented on “Advancing Health Equity in Pediatric Eye Care: The Role of Schools.” In addition, Fasika Woreta, M.D., M.P.H., the Eugene de Juan, M.D. Professor of Ophthalmic Education, participated in a panel discussion on “Increasing Diversity Within Eye and Vision Science.”


Goldberg Profile Yields Insights Into Illustrious Career, History of Retina

Morton F. Goldberg, M.D., the Joseph E. Green Professor of Ophthalmology and director emeritus of Wilmer, was profiled as part of History of Retina, a project of the American Society of Retina Specialists. The project includes stories of retina pioneers “whose innovative spirit and pivotal contributions laid the framework for the advanced sight-saving retinal care of today and the…promising treatments of tomorrow.”


In the Spotlight

Liu: How Technology Is Transforming Ophthalmology

AI software in ophthalmology holds great potential in helping physicians automate the diagnostic process, says T.Y. Alvin Liu, M.D., director of the Wilmer Precision Ophthalmology Center of Excellence, in HealthTech magazine.


Sodhi Study Compares Outcomes for Two Popular AMD Drugs

A pilot, “look-back” study of information about 106 patients with “wet” age-related macular degeneration (AMD) treated at Wilmer revealed that nearly half of patients treated with aflibercept could safely stop eye injection therapy after one year without further vision loss. Only 17% of patients taking another commonly used wet AMD therapy were able to safely wean from the drug at a year. Results of the study, which was led by Akrit Sodhi, M.D., Ph.D., the Branna and Irving Sisenwein Professor of Ophthalmology, were published in The Journal of Clinical Investigation and highlighted in this Johns Hopkins Medicine press release.


Researchers Capture 3D Cellular Dynamics Across Whole Organism

Ji Yi, Ph.D., M.S., led a team of researchers in establishing a new microscopy technique that can capture dynamic 3D images of an entire zebrafish larvae while maintaining cellular resolution in all three dimensions. “Looking at biological systems in their larger context — also known as a mesoscopic scale — provides holistic information for complex biological systems such as a complete neural circuit in mouse brain/retina, 3D organoids culture or entire zebrafish larvae,” said Yi. “Our work also lays a foundation for further development that would allow even faster, larger and deeper biological imaging.” Team members included Jeffrey Mumm, Ph.D., the Helen Larson & Charles Glenn Grover Professor in Ophthalmology. The work was published in Optica.

Members of the research team included (L to R) Jeffrey Mumm, Ph.D.; JHU biomedical engineer Patrick KanoldJi Yi, Ph.D., M.S.; and postdoctoral student Minzi Chang, Ph.D.


Awards and Honors

Singh Named Dracopoulos Professor

Mandeep Singh, M.B.B.S., M.D., Ph.D. has been selected as the Andreas C. Dracopoulos Professor of Ophthalmology. The professorship was previously held by the late Daniel Finkelstein.


Upcoming Events

Virtual Grand Rounds

Join Wilmer for virtual Grand Rounds, Thursday mornings from 7:30am – 8:30am. CME credit is available for Johns Hopkins affiliates. Click here to join these upcoming sessions:

·     Jan. 12General

·     Jan. 19General

·     Jan. 26Refractive Surgery


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Stay on Top of News and Research at Wilmer Eye Institute

Thank you for reading Wilmer in Focus, a monthly newsletter featuring the latest on Wilmer’s exciting collaborations, pioneering research, and inspiring patient stories. Stay up to date on major events and initiatives through our website. Learn More

More news

2022 Wilmer Annual Report

The eye, which is more easily accessible than organs shielded by skin and muscle, often reveals insights into a patient’s overall state of health. The Wilmer Eye Institute’s Annual Report details stories of lifesaving discoveries, innovative educational initiatives, and groundbreaking research that are advancing patient care and the field of ophthalmology.  Read the report: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/publications/wilmer_issues/annual-report-2022

WAEH – Deadline Projects January 2023

REMINDER: Call for Projects Interested in funding for a project? The WAEH can finance two to three projects per year with 7.500,- euro. You can use the following WAEH project format to send in your project proposal: WAEH project proposal.Round 1 – Deadline 31 January 2023– Incoming proposals reviewed by board in February / March board meeting– […]

Longitudinal Use of Telehealth During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Utility of Asynchronous Testing for Subspecialty-Level Ophthalmic Care 

Publication by WAEH Member UCSF – Department of Ophthalmology Importance: Telehealth in ophthalmology has traditionally focused on preventive disease screening with limited use in outpatient evaluation. The unique conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic afforded the opportunity to evaluate different implementations of teleophthalmology at scale, providing insight into expanding teleophthalmology care.  Objective: To compare telehealth use in ophthalmology […]

The Victoria Cohen Scholarship 2023/24 – open for applications

The Victoria Cohen Scholarship is now open for applications from aspiring ocular oncologists in need of financial support throughout their fellowship.  The Victoria Cohen Eye Cancer Charitable Trust was established in 2021 in memory of the late Victoria Cohen, former president of ISOO. Victoria was always keen to support the next generation of eye surgeons […]

Saving lives, eyes and vision through education

Eye cancer is a terrible disease and there are not enough ocular oncologists in the world. Training takes time and money. The Victoria Cohen Eye Cancer Charitable Trust provides scholarships to support aspiring ocular oncologists through their training and education. The deadline for applications for the Victoria Cohen Scholarship 2023/24 is the 31st March 2023.  For […]

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