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Our Senior Research Team

The University of Southampton vision science team includes senior scientists, research fellows, PhD students and laboratory technicians, led by Professor Andrew Lotery.   

Collaborations are forged within other disciplines in the University as well as working with scientists in external research institutions.

 

Parwez HossainDr Parwez Hossain MB ChB, PhD FRCS (Ed), FRCOphth FHEA
Associate Professor & Consultant Ophthalmologist

Parwez’s research activity is currently focused finding on new approaches to manage corneal disease, a major cause of visual impairment worldwide. In the UK alone, 6000 patients are affected from corneal microbial infections every year. Visual impairment often is very rapid (within 24 hours) and frequently leads to permanent visual loss.

Please read more about Parwez's work on his University of Southampton staff page, which also includes details of academic and clinical research publications.
 

Jay SelfDr Jay Self BM, FRCOphth, PhD
Associate Professor & Consultant Ophthalmologist

Jay’s research interests cover a range of disorders affecting vision in children including nystagmus, albinism, genetic disorders of the eye, amblyopia and paediatric cataract. His team combines expertise in genetics, bioinformatics, wet-lab modelling, eye-tracking and clinical trials.

Please read more about on Jay's work on his University staff page, which includes details of academic and clinical research publications. He has collaborated with a wider team from the University of Southampton to develop an app to help children with amblyopia (lazy eye) which will help thousands of young patients throughout the UK. Please see our 'Children's Eye Research' page for more information. 

 

ArjunaDr Arjuna Ratnayaka BSc, MPhil, PhD
Associate Professor in Vision Sciences

Arjuna is a specialist in cellular/molecular biology. His group at Southampton studies molecular mechanisms underlying degenerative pathophysiology in the senescent retina and brain. The work undertaken in his group employs histological, molecular/biochemical, light and ultrastructural microscopy as well as 3D imaging techniques.

Vision research attracts a minimal amount of funding and Arjuna, together with Dr Jenny Dewing, completed a study 'Policy Changes amongst stakeholders to increase awareness and funding for research into sight loss'. The article can be read here.

Please read more on Arjuna's staff page, including details of his academic research publications. 

 

Helena LeeDr Helena Lee MB, BCh, BAO, PhD, FRCOphth
Associate Professor and Consultant Ophthalmologist

We are delighted that Helena has received a prestigious MRC Clinician Scientist Fellowship  to continue her research into albinism (the OLIVIA study). Specialising in neuro-ophthalmology, paediatrics and strabismus Helena has an international research reputation in the area of infantile nystagmus, paediatric retinal development and optical coherence tomography (OCT).

Drug testing for the OLIVIA study was originally planned to start this year. (2024) However, the Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has requested data that  requires a significant amount of additional work, before giving authorisation for the clinical trial to proceed. Unfortunately, there were no funds available to carry out this work, which means that it is now necessary to apply for new funding to get the trial underway.

Some families who have children diagnosed with albinism have offered to fundraise to help my team obtain the data that will be necessary to get the trial underway. I am hugely grateful to these generous people and it will be amazing if you will read their stories and help them by donating to their JustGiving pages listed on our Events page www.giftofsight.org.uk/events

 

Helena has made a YouTube video explaining her work.  Please watch it here

Please read Helena's staff page, which includes details of clinical and academic research publications.

 

 

Jorn LakowskiDr Jorn Lakowski
Senior Research Fellow in Vision Science

Jorn joined our team in Southampton as The Andrew Elkington Senior Research Fellow.  His studies include degenerative diseases of the retina, a study of human cone photoreceptor development and pathology and studies of human ganglion cell development and pathology. He is keen to share his expertise with research students.

Please read more on Jorn's staff page, including details of his academic research papers. His current research into preventing cone starvation in retinitis pigmentosa can be found here. In 2023, he secured an academic grant of £548,535 from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council for his stem cell and genome editing work - see his full article in the June 2023 newsletter here.