Past Awards

The ASCRS Foundation has named the recipients of its 2015 Research Grant Awards. This year’s winners are working on research that ranges from studying the incidence of glaucoma in children following corneal transplants, to evaluating new surgical approaches to prevent dysphotopsia.

Each year, the ASCRS Foundation awards ten $5,000 grants to support research into all areas of eye disease and treatment. More than $550,000 in grants have been awarded since the program began in 2003.

Winners by year:


2016 Research Grant Award Winners 

Utility of the postoperative week 1 examination and postoperative month 1 dilated examination after cataract surgery
Durga Borkar, MD

Exon usage and splicing variation in human age-related meibomian gland dysfunction (ARMGD)
Emily Sara Charlson, MD

Interaction between accommodating intraocular lens and ciliary muscle using real-time optical coherence tomography
Heather Durkee, MSBME

Cataract surgical outcomes among survivors of Ebola virus disease
Allen Eghrari, MD

Three-dimensional characterization of modern post-refractive intraocular lens formulas to generate a singular post-refractive IOL calculation solution and maximize accuracy
Aazim A. Siddiqui, MD

MMP9 levels after cataract surgery
Ilya M. Sluch, MD

Time between DMEK preparation and use on endothelial cell viability
Nishant Soni, MD

Evaluation of resources required for measurement of cataract surgery outcomes
Brian Stagg, MD

Experimental model of keratoectasia for testing a potential “lenticular insertion” therapy in ex-vivo porcine cornea
Ivey Thornton, MD

Development of novel ophthalmic antibiotics
Rachel Wozniak MD, PhD

2015 Research Grant Award Winners 

Ocular aberrations and contrast sensitivity following different types of wavefront excimer laser treatment
Nizar Saleh Abdelfattah, MD

Treatment of postoperative discomfort/pain and facilitation of corneal re-epithelialization after
Xiangjun Chen, MD, PhD

Effect of intraoperative factors on IOP reduction after phacoemulsification in open-angle glaucoma patients
Eva DeVience, MD

Multicenter clinical trial to evaluate a new surgical approach for the prevention of negative dysphotopsia
Ivayla Geneva, MD, PhD

The incidence of glaucoma in children post pediatric corneal
Luxme Hariharan, MD, MPH

Early diagnosis of Sjögren’s syndrome among dry eye patients
Sezen Karakus, MD

Which aqueous humor outflow pathways are key structures for MIGS outcome?
Sayoko Maroi, MD, PhD

Investigation of interaction of immune cells with limbal stem cells
Doran Spencer, MD

DSAEK combined with endocyclophotocoagulation in eyes with pre-existing glaucoma: Long term graft survival
Luis Oswaldo Villavicencio, MD

A polyacrylamide vitreo-refractive prosthesis designed to prevent post-vitrectomy cataract and restore accommodation
Scott Walter, MD

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2014 Research Grant Award Winners 

Pharmacologic Reduction of Posterior Capsule Opacification Using a Novel Thermogel Drug Delivery Device
Heather Chandler, MD

Trabeculectomy with Mitomycin C versus Phaco-iStent X2 in Patients with Open Angle Glaucoma: A Prospective Randomized Control Trial
Michael Dorey, MD

Modulation of Glaucoma Filtration Surgery Healing Response through Local TNF-Alpha Inhibition in New Zealand White Rabbit Model
Ahmara Gibbons Ross, MD

Comparison of Ocular Surface Flora in Boston Keratoprosthesis Patients on Prophylactic Vancomycin vs. Linezolid
Joshua H. Hou, MD

Imaging of Aqueous Collector Channels Using a Catheter-Based Confocal Laser Microprobe
Ken Lin, MD, PhD

Corneal Collagen Cross-Linking for Boston Keratoprosthesis Carriers
Marie-Claude Robert, MD

Effects of Pupil Constricting and Dilating Drops, and Tamsulosin on Ocular Biometry Measured by Partial Coherence Interferometry
Mona Sane, MD

A Novel Sign for the Diagnosis of Corneal Graft Rejection
Mohamed Abou Shousha, MD, FRCS, PhD

Preservation of the Corneal Epithelium in Life 4oC vs Optisol GS Corneal Storage Media
Nishant G. Soni, MD

Evaluation of a New Technique for the Preparation of Endothelial Graft for Descemet’s Membrane Endothelial Keratoplasty
Setareh Ziai, MD

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2013 Research Grant Award Winners 

Lacrimal Stem Cells and Dry Eye Disease
Vinay Aakalu, MD

Neuroprotection by Sulforaphane in Retinal Ischemia Reperfusion Injury
Lindsay Ambrecht, MD

Elucidating Novel Regulators of Cystoid Macular Edema
Daniel Chao, MD

Local Application of Human Adipose-Derived Stem Cells Overlaid on a Scleral Contact Lens for the Treatment of Limbal Stem Cell Deficiency
Ladan Espandar, MD

The Effect of Real-Time OCT During Cataract Surgery and Descemet-Stripping Endothelial Keratoplasty on Postoperative Corneal Wound Dynamics
Francisco Folgar, MD

Comparative Analysis of Morphologic Features of Clear Corneal Incisions Created with the Femtosecond Cataract Laser and a Manual Keratome Using Anterior Segment Optical Coherence Tomography
Dilraj S. Grewal, MD

Descemet Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty: A Microscope View
Mark S. Hansen, MD

Application of Anterior Segment Optical Coherence Tomography in Micro Invasive Glaucoma Surgery
Wei Huang, MD, PhD

Efficacyof Intense Pulsed Light for Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, Ocular Rosacea, and Dry Eye Syndrome
Bradford W. Lee, MD

Randomized Clinical Trial Evaluating Visual Axis Obscuration and Complications of in-the-bag IOL vs. Optic Capture of IOL in Pediatric Cataract and Intraocular Lens Surgery
Vaishali Vasavada, MD

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2012 Research Grant Award Winners 

A Method to Liquefy the Lens to Simplify Cataract Surgery
Richard A. Eiferman, MD, FACS

Survey to Formulate a Microsurgical Curriculum
Tamar Goldstein, MD

Mechanical Corneal Transplant Suturing Device
Houman David Hemmati, MD, PhD

Assessment of Endothelial Health for PK or EK Using Vision Blue
Gioconda Mojica, MD

Effects of Alpha-1a Antagonists on Pupillary Dilation and Iris Thickness
Peter Ness, MD

10-Year Outcome of Fungal Keratitis at a Single Center
Gina M. Rogers, MD

Predictive Ability of Intraoperative Zonulopathy: Ultrasound Biomicroscopy (UBM) versus Clinical Assessment
Hady Saheb, MD, FRCSC

Modified Anthrax Toxin Engineered…
Akrit Sodhi, MD, PhD

Epithelial Downgrowth: A Novel Rodent Model
Matthew Weiss, MD

Anterior Segment Optical Coherence Tomography Imaging of Implanted Type I Boston Keratoprosthesis for the Evaluation of Postoperative Anterior Chamber Positioning and Complications
Cynthia Xin-ya Qian

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2011 Research Grant Award Winners 

Lacrimal Stem Cells and Dry Eye Research:
Vinay K. Aakalu, MD, MPH

Collagenase-Assisted Dissection for Deep Anterior Lamellar Keratoplasty (DALK):
David Hunter Cherwek, MD

Protective Role of the Cornea Cap during Donor Graft Creation in Descemet-Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty:
Deepinder K. Dhaliwal, MD

Effective Lens Position, Pseudophakic Accomodation, Rate of Posterior Capsule Opacification, and Intraocular Lens Posterior Capsule Adhesion Assessed by Visante Anterior Segment OCT:
Boris Dilman, MD

Rate of IOP Elevation in Normal Tension Glaucoma, Open Angle Glaucoma, Glaucoma Suspects and Ocular Hypertension Patients Using Difluprednate 0.05% after Phacoemulsification:
Melissa Morrison Cable, MD

Evaluating Teaching Methods of Cataract Surgery: Validation of an Evaluation Tool for Assessing Surgical Technique of Capsulorhexis:
Ronald J. Smith, MD

An Investigation of the Safety and Efficacy of Subconjunctival Bevacizumab in the Treatment of Corneal Neovascularization:
Renee Solomon, MD

Omental Stromal Cell Transplantation in the Management of Limbal Stem Cell Deficiency:
Anita P. Vin, MD

Iris Dysfunction and IFIS with Alpha-1 Blockers:
Chris Watts, MD

Analysis of Factors Contributing to Long-Term Success in Descement’s Stripping Automated Endothelial Keratoplasty (DSEAK) Surgery:
Jeremy B. Wingard, MD

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2010 Research Grant Award Winners 

Intraocular Pressure Parameters and Visual Field Progression in Patients with Treated Glaucoma:
Viral Juthani, MD

A Longitudinal Investigation Analyzing the Rick Factors, Incidence, Signs and Symptoms of Graft Rejection Following Descemet Stripping Endothelial Keratoplasty: 
Renee Solomon, MD

Corneal Endothelial Cell Replacement Therapy: A Nanoparticle Approach:
Jeffrey L. Goldberg, MD, PhD

Oral Omega-3 Fatty Acids in the Treatment of Dry Eye Syndrome:
Admad A. Aref, MD

The Effect of Filtering Surgery on Visual Field Progression Rates in Treated Glaucoma Patients: 
Francisco A. Folgar, MD

Preliminary Study of Enhanced Ectasia Screening of Refractive Surgery Patients: Sensitivity and Specificity of Corneal Tomography:
Frederico Guerra, MD

Nanotechnology-Mediated Gene Delivery into Corneal Endothelium to Treat Fuch’s Dystropy: 
Chetan Soni, MD

Relationship between Central Serous Chorioretinopathy and Helicobacter Pylori: 
Sri Krishna Mukkamala, MD

Efficacy of Large-Diameter Soft Contact Lenses in the Post-Surgical Management of Pterygium
Elizabeth Yeu, MD

Ocular Surface Squamous Neoplasia Treatment for Topical and Intralesional Injection or Interferon 
Hyunjin Jane Kim, MD

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2009 Research Grant Award Winners 

Adipose-Derived Stem Cells on Naturally Derived Scaffold as a New Horizon in Bioengineered Cornea:
Ladan Espandar, MD

Thermosensitive Tissue-Adhesive Biodegradable Polymeric Device: A new Platform for Sustained Drug Delivery in Ophthalmology: 
Tueng T. Shen, MD, PhD

A Novel Wet-Field Adhesive: Complex Coacervate for Corneal and Cataract Wounds: 
Gilbert C. Wong, MD

Comparison of Progression Rates between Normal-Tension and High-Tension Glaucoma Patients: 
Kristy Ahrlich, MD

Anterior Capsule Staining and Brilliant Blue G: A Promising Dye for use in Cataract Surgery: 
Hebeeb O. Ahmad, MD

Intraoperative Floppy Iris Syndrome in Women:
Christopher J. Gee, MD

Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) Susceptibilities to Current and Previous Antibiotics: 
Pankaj C. Gupta, MD

Factors Affecting Donor Cornea Cuts for Descemet Stripping Automated Endothelial Keraplasty: 
Carolyn Y. Shih, MD, MPH

An Investigation of New, Real-Time, Intraoperative Aberrometry to Evaluate and Improve Accuracy in IOL Power Selection in Eyes Undergoing Cataract Surgery Following Previous Refractive Surgery:
Renee Solomon, MD

Effect of Riboflavin/UV-A Collagen Crosslinking on Corneal Permeability:
Jay M. Stewart, MD

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