We use genetics, genomics, cell biology and physiology to understand the fundamental biologic processes that cause disease, with a focus on neurodegeneration and glaucoma. Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness, affecting 70 million people worldwide. Retinal ganglion cell death and optic nerve degeneration lead to blindness. Harmfully high intraocular pressure (IOP) is an important contributing factor in many cases. The genetic factors determining IOP and susceptibility to pressure-induced damage are largely unknown.
Our work spans developmental biology, melanosomal biology, immunology, and neurobiology. In addition to glaucoma, we study age-related macular degeneration-relevant phenotypes and Alzheimer's disease. The subsequent listed research areas provide more detailed summaries of the primary areas of focus of our glaucoma research.