Joseph B. Ciolino, M.D.

Harvard Medical School

Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Department of Ophthalmology

Massachusetts Eye and Ear

Henry Freeman Allen Cornea Scholar


Research Summary

Center/Research Area Affiliations

Research Summary

Dr. Ciolino is a clinician scientist who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of corneal diseases. His research aims to develop and test a drug-eluting contact lens for the treatment of eye diseases. Specifically, he plans to carry out proof-of-concept studies to demonstrate the functionality and safety of this drug-eluting contact lens, advancing toward the goal of treating glaucoma, eye infections, and ocular inflammation in patients. He is currently working to bring a dexamethasone-eluting contact lens and a latanoprost-eluting contact lens closer to first tests in human subjects.

Select Publications

For a full publication list, please see his CV.

In vivo performance of a drug-eluting contact lens to treat glaucoma for a month. Ciolino JB, Stefanescu CF, Ross AE, Salvador-Culla B, Cortez P, Ford EM, Wymbs KA, Sprague SL, Mascoop DR, Rudina SS, Trauger SA, Cade F, Kohane DS. Biomaterials. 2014 Jan;35(1):432-9.

A drug-eluting contact lens. Ciolino JB, Hoare TR, Iwata NG, Behlau I, Dohlman CH, Langer R, Kohane DS. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2009 Jul; 50(7): 3346-52.

A prototype antifungal contact lens. Ciolino JB, Hudson SP, Mobbs AN, Hoare TR, Iwata NG, Fink GR, Kohane DS.  Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2011 Aug; 52(9): 6286-91.

Retention of the Boston Keratoprosthesis type 1: multicenter study results. Ciolino JB, Belin MW, Todani A, Al-Arfaj K, Ciolino JB. Ophthalmology. 2013 Jun;120(6):1195-200.

Reliable intraocular pressure measurement using automated radio-wave telemetry. Paschalis E, Cade F, Melki SA, Pasquale LR, Dohlman CH, Ciolino JB. Clin Ophthalmol. 2014 Jan 7;8:177-85.

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  • 1994-1998: B.S., Economics, Boston College
  • 1998-2002: M.D., Medicine, Georgetown University School of Medicine

Postgraduate Training

  • 2002-2003: Internship, Internal Medicine, Brown Medical School
  • 2003-2004: Research Fellowship, Ophthalmology, Massachusetts Eye and Ear
  • 2004-2007: Residency, Ophthalmology, Albany Medical College
  • 2007-2009: Clinical Fellowship, Cornea and External Disease, Massachusetts Eye and Ear

Academic Appointments

  • 2007-present: Research Affiliate, Health Science and Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • 2009-2012: Instructor, Ophthalmology, Harvard Medical School
  • 2012-present: Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology, Harvard Medical School

Professional Memberships

  • 2004-present: Member, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology
  • 2004-present: Member, American Academy of Ophthalmology


  • 2005, Best Scientific Paper Fellow Award, Cornea Federated Society
  • 2006: Robert D. Reinecke Research Award, Albany Medical College
  • 2007: Annual House Staff Research Award, Albany Medical College
  • 2009: MIT 100K Finalist, Winner of Life-Sciences Track, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • 2009: Dohlman Cornea Fellow Award, Dohlman Society