The proposed Core facilities are designed to enhance and make more efficient the NEI-supported research carried out at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. The participating investigators conduct research involving the retina, retinal diseases, glaucoma, diseases and immunology of the cornea, and ocular development. The proposed Core is organized into the following four modules. 1. The Morphology Module provides resources, services, training, and technical assistance for investigators who require laser scanning confocal microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, light microscopy, immunofluorescence analysis, and related technologies. 2. The Molecular Biology Module provides services and equipment and DNA sequencing currently required for state-of-the-art molecular biology experiments involving vision science. 3. The Clinical Interface Module provides investigators with centralized and efficient processing of blood and other types of samples derived from patients who volunteer to participate in molecular genetics research and other research of the participating investigators. As such, it serves as the interface between clinicians who diagnose and treat patients with ocular disease and the clinician-scientists and basic scientists who wish to conduct experiments that require the analysis of DNA or other biological compounds derived from those patients. 4. The in Vivo Imaging and Function Module is a new module that will use non-invasive techniques to evaluate the status of ocular tissues in living animals used in vision research. The two technologies to be initially offered by this module will be optical coherence tomographic (OCT) imaging and electroretinographic (ERG) evaluation of retinal function. These methods will allow investigators to follow the course of ocular disease over time in individual animals, thereby reducing the number of animals needed for vision research as well as providing new insights into the physiology and pathology of ocular disease. This Core will augment our institution's commitment to devote major resources to the study of ocular diseases of its patients, especially diseases that still result in blindness despite current therapies, with the long-term goal of developing new therapies for these conditions.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Eye Institute (NEI)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZEY1-VSN (08))
Program Officer
Liberman, Ellen S
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Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary
United States
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