Thaddeus P. Dryja, M.D.



Ophthalmic Pathology

Ophthalmic Oncology

Board Certification

  • Ophthalmology

Main Campus
243 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114
Phone: 617-573-3319
Fax: 614-573-3168



Thaddeus (Ted) Dryja, M.D. is a Professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and Massachusetts Eye and Ear. Dr. Dryja is a 1972 magna cum laude graduate of Yale College (BA, chemistry) and a 1976 graduate of the Yale University School of Medicine (MD).  From 1976-1983 he completed an internship in medicine (Waterbury Hospital, Connecticut), a residency in ophthalmology (Mass. Eye and Ear) and fellowships in ophthalmic pathology and molecular genetics (both at HMS).  In 1983, he joined the ophthalmology department faculty at Mass. Eye and Ear and HMS.  From 1983-2006, he led a research team studying the molecular genetics of hereditary eye diseases while concurrently practicing general ophthalmology and ophthalmic pathology. In 1992, he became the director of the David G. Cogan Pathology Laboratory at Mass. Eye and Ear and in 1993 he became the Cogan Professor of Ophthalmology at HMS.  In 1996 he became a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.  His research discoveries included finding compelling evidence for the recessive nature of oncogenic mutations at tumor suppressor genes like the retinoblastoma gene, the identification and cloning of the retinoblastoma gene, and the identification of 16 different genes responsible for retinitis pigmentosa and other forms of retinal degeneration and retinal dysfunction.  In 2006 Dr. Dryja joined the Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research where he was the Global Head of Translational Medicine in Ophthalmology (2006-2009) and then the Vice President and Global Head of Ophthalmology research (2009-2017).  In 2017, he retired from Novartis and returned to HMS.  He currently works as an attending eye pathologist in the Cogan Eye Pathology Laboratory at Mass. Eye and Ear.

Clinical Interests


Research Interests

Genetics of hereditary eye disease


For a full publication list, please see his CV. A representative list (2006 - 2012) is available through

Ghosh JG, Nguyen AA, Bigelow CE, Poor S, Qiu Y, Rangaswamy N, Ornberg R, Jackson B, Mak H, Ezell T, Kenanova V, de la Cruz E, Carrion A, Etemad-Gilbertson B, Caro RG, Zhu K, George V, Bai J, Sharma-Nahar R, Shen S, Wang Y, Subramanian KK, Fassbender E, Maker M, Hanks S, Vrouvlianis J, Leehy B, Long D, Prentiss M, Kansara V, Jaffee B, Dryja TP, Roguska M.  Long-acting protein drugs for the treatment of ocular diseasesNature Communications. 8:14837. March 23, 2017.

Liao S-M, Zheng W, Zhu J, Lewis CA, Delgado O, Crowley MA, Buchanan NM, Jaffee BD, Dryja TP.  Specific correlation between the major chromosome 10q26 haplotype conferring risk for age-related macular degeneration and the expression of HTRA1Mol Vision. 23:318-333. 2017.

Zhou EH, Paolucci M, Dryja TP, Manley T, Xiang C, Rice DS, Prasanna G, Chen A.  A compact whole-eye perfusion system to evaluate pharmacologic responses of outflow facility Invest Ophthal Vis Sci. 58:2991-3003. 2017.

Crowley MA, Delgado O, Will-Orrego A, Buchanan NM, Anderson K, Jaffee BD, Dryja TP, Liao S-M.  Induction of ocular complement activation by inflammatory stimuli and intraocular inhibition of complement factor D in animal modelsInvest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 59:940-951. 2018.

Zheng W, Dryja TP, Wei Z, Song D, Tian H, Kahler KH, Khawaja AP.  Systemic medication associations with presumed advanced or uncontrolled primary open-angle glaucomaOphthalmology. 125:984-993. 2018.



  • Chemistry, Yale College, BA
  • Yale University School of Medicine, M.D.


  • Ophthalmology, Harvard Medical School, Mass. Eye and Ear


  • Clinical Genetics and Ophthalmology, Harvard Medical School, Children's Hospital
  • Harvard Medical School, Mass. Eye and Ear