The Houston Area Vision Training Program is a long-standing collaborative effort among 38 experienced Vision Research faculty at the University of Texas Health Science Center (UT) and the University of Houston College of Optometry (UHCO). The primary goal of the Program is to provide high quality training in well-equipped labs by preceptors with strong records of NEI funding, peer-reviewed publication, innovative research and previous training experience. A specific training program is outlined which provides laboratory training in either basic or clinical research with strong components of relevant course work and a rich environment of seminars and visiting scholars. The co-PIs will be Dr. Massey from UT and Dr. Frishman from UHCO. There are 19 investigators at each institution who together hold 21 R01s and 2 R21s from NEI. In addition, both UT and UHCO hold Vision Core Grants. Support is requested for 4 predoctoral positions and 2 post-doctoral positions. This includes 1 new postdoctoral position to support those clinicians with OD degrees who choose to enter the PhD program. In the last funding period, this program supported 15 Ph.D. candidates including 12 predoctoral students and 3 ODs who entered the PhD program. Of these 15 trainees, 10 completed their PhDs , 4 are close to completion and 1 obtained a MS degree. Of the 10 trainees who graduated with PhDs, 9 have research or academic positions. One had obtained an F31 during training, one was awarded an NEI R01 after training and 1 has a tenure-track position. Of the 4 postdoctoral trainees, 3 were ODs in the PhD program and one was a recent PhD. They are all research faculty and/or still in training. Two of the 3 ODs obtained K-Awards during training and the most recent postdoctoral trainee has a pending F32 Award. From a public health perspective, it is important to train the next generation of Vision Researchers. As life expectancy is prolonged, visual problems will be more frequent and will require new methods of treatment. This will require a multidisciplinary approach by researchers specifically trained in Visual Science to apply the latest technology to problems of the Visual System.
perspective, it is important to train the next generation of Vision Researchers. As life expectancy is prolonged, visual problems will be more frequent and will require new methods of treatment. This will require a multidisciplinary approach by researchers specifically trained in Visual Science to apply the latest technology to problems of the Visual System.
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