ARVO announces the winners of multiple awards

These awards will help to advance the winner’s work and research in their respective fields in retinal surgery and age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

The awards and funding will help to advance the winner’s work and research in their respective fields in retinal surgery and age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) announced the winners of the 2022 Kreissig Award for Excellence in Retinal Surgery and the 2023 Bert M. Glaser, MD Award for Innovative Research in Retina recently in a press release.

Miguel Flores-Bellver, PhD, is the recipient of the 2023 Bert M. Glaser, MD Award for Innovative Research in Retina. This award recognizes an early-career investigator who has made a novel discovery that impacted the understanding and/or treatment of a retinal disease or condition and provides $10,000 in funding.

Demetrios G. Vavvas, MD, PhD, is the recipient of the 2022 recipient of the Kreissig Award for Excellence in Retinal Surgery. This award recognizes excellence in the understanding of the mechanisms of retinal disease requiring surgical management, innovative approaches to management, and/or outcomes of surgical treatment and provides $30,000 in funding.

According to ARVO, these awards will help to advance the winner’s work and research in their respective fields in retinal surgery and age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

Flores-Bellver, the recipient of the 2023 Bert M. Glaser, MD Award for Innovative Research in Retina, is a research instructor in the Department of Ophthalmology, University of Colorado, and a principal investigator at the CellSight-Ocular Stem Cell and Regeneration Program. He is also director of The Human Stem Cells Exosome Lab (ExoSight). His team's research aims to better understand the early events involved in early age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

"Dry AMD begins with the appearance of drusen, and the lack of therapies responds, to a certain extent, to our little understanding of drusen formation," said Flores-Bellver in the ARVO press release. "Our studies seek to understand how little vesicles, called exosomes, secreted by retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) and containing cellular bioproducts, are delivered from unhealthy RPE and contribute to drusen formation and AMD progression.”

Vavvas, the recipient of the 2022 recipient of the Kreissig Award for Excellence in Retinal Surgery, is the Solman and Libe Friedman Professor of Ophthalmology, and director of the Retina Service at Harvard Medical School. Vavvas was first to describe transconjuctival minimally invasive surgery for repairing cataract surgery complications and intraocular foreign body trauma, now the mainstay of surgical approach for these conditions worldwide.

"This technique that we published, has become the standard of care for this serious complication which affects about 20,000 - 35,000 patients in the U.S. a year and twice as many in the rest of the world. It is easier for the patient leading to speedier recovery," said Vavvas in the ARVO release.

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