Knights Templar Eye Foundation Awards Columbia Post-Doctoral Researcher Pediatric Ophthalmology Research Grant

New York, NY (May 25, 2017)Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) Department of Ophthalmology has announced that research scientist Revathi Balasubramanian, PhD has been awarded a Pediatric Ophthalmology Career-Starter Research Grant from the Knights Templar Eye Foundation, Inc.

The award, presented Thursday, May 25 during the Department’s weekly Ground Rounds lecture series, is a one-year grant for $65,000 that will fund Dr. Balasubramanian’s research to better understand the genetic basis of the development of iris and ciliary body. This work is crucial to develop treatment options for congenital forms of glaucoma and aniridia. Dr. Balasubramanian’s project is being conducted in the lab of Associate Professor of Ophthalmic Sciences, Xin Zhang, PhD.

Based in Flower Mound, Texas, Knights Templar Eye Foundation is the funding organization for the grant. Mr. Richard Kerimoglu, Right Eminent Grand Commander and Mr. David Dixon Goodwin, Most Eminent Past Grand Master, Grand Encampment of Knights Templar, Past President and Trustee of the Knights Templar were in attendance at the Grand Rounds lecture and made the award presentation to Dr. Balasubramanian. Department of Ophthalmology, Chairman Dr. George “Jack” Cioffi and Professor Xin Zhang, in whose lab Dr. Balasubramanian’s work is currently conducted, were also part of the presentation.

From left: Mr. Xin Zhang, PhD, Chairman Jack Cioffi, MD, with award recipient Ms. Revathi Balasubramanian, PhD receiving the award from Knights Templar Eye Foundation, Inc. members Mr. Richard Kerimoglu, Right Eminent Grand Commander and Mr. David Goodwin, Most Eminent Past Grand Master, Grand Encampment of Knights Templar, Past President and Trustee.

The Knights Templar Eye Foundation states that it is committed to support research that can help launch the careers of clinical or basic researchers committed to the understanding, prevention and cure of vision threatening diseases in infants and children. The foundation supports clinical or basic research on conditions that can advance treatment or prevention.

The Edward S. Harkness Eye Institute Department of Ophthalmology at Columbia University Irving Medical Center offers one of the world’s most advanced and renowned programs in comprehensive ophthalmic care, teaching and research. Since its founding in 1933, the department has maintained a leadership position in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders causing vision loss and blindness.

The Edward S. Harkness Eye Institute is a leading international center for diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the eye, with priority emphasis on the basic science and translational research necessary to uncover the cause of these diseases and to develop new, vision-saving treatments. Our innovative research has netted landmark breakthroughs in virtually every area of ophthalmic science, including first therapies for retinoblastoma, pioneering laser therapies toward the first treatments in 1961, genetics research of retinal dystrophies and degenerations, development of the first prostaglandin analogue for the treatment of glaucoma, and the introductory use of perfluorocarbons in retinal surgery. Our proud tradition of innovative, translational science with a focus on patient care continues to this day.