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Research to Prevent Blindness Awards $100,000 Grant to Mass. Eye and Ear’s Department of Ophthalmology

Contact: Public Affairs
Ph: 617-573-3340

Boston (Aug. 31, 2011) – Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB) has awarded a grant of $100,000 to the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary to support research into the causes, treatment and prevention of blinding diseases. The research will be directed by Joan W. Miller, M.D., Chief of the Mass. Eye and Ear and Mass. General Hospital’s Departments of Ophthalmology and Chair of the Department of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School.

Research to Prevent Blindness is the world’s leading volunteer organization supporting eye research. To date, the organization has awarded grants totaling $7,067,315 to Harvard Medical School.
“The generous grants Mass. Eye and Ear and Harvard Medical School receive from Research to Prevent Blindness allow the researchers in the Department of Ophthalmology to continue to seek out improved disease management, treatment and future cures for our patients by continuing important research into the causes of vision loss,” said Dr. Miller.

The Mass. Eye and Ear/Mass General Department of Ophthalmology is one of the world's premier centers for excellence in ophthalmic clinical care, research and education. Fields of investigation currently under intensive study include: retinal degeneration, including age-related macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa; diabetic retinopathy; glaucoma and other optic neuropathies; corneal and ocular surface diseases; and all aspects of ocular therapeutics and surgery.  Recently, research has expanded in specialty fields such as outcomes, genomics and genetics, gene-base therapies, ocular immunology, cell biology and angiogenesis. As the seat of Ophthalmology leadership for Harvard Medical School, the Department builds on the strengths of affiliated faculty from such renowned local institutions as Joslin Diabetes Center, Children's Hospital Boston, Schepens Eye Research Institute, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Boston Veteran's Administration Healthcare System to encourage innovation and remain a global leader in ophthalmology.

About Mass. Eye and Ear
Founded in 1824, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary is an independent specialty hospital providing patient care for disorders of the eye, ear, nose, throat, head and neck. Mass. Eye and Ear is an international leader in Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology research and a teaching partner of Harvard Medical School. Under the direction of Mass. Eye and Ear’s board of directors, the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and Schepens Eye Research Institute recently formed the world’s largest and most robust private basic and clinical ophthalmology research enterprise. For more information, call 617-523-7900 or visit http://www.masseyeandear.org/.

About RPB
RPB is the world’s leading voluntary organization supporting eye research. Since it was founded in 1960, RPB has channeled hundreds of millions of dollars to medical institutions for research into the causes, treatment and prevention of binding eye diseases. For information on RPB, RPB-funded research, eye disorders and the RPB Grants Program, go to www.rpbusa.org.