Research program receives key funding from Research to Prevent Blindness

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The University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine has been granted an Unrestricted Grant by Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB) in the amount of $115,000 a year to support promising 

Luke Wiley

vision research. Funding was awarded based on a thorough review of criteria, including the department’s research activities, laboratory environment, and clinical and scientific staff, as evaluated by RPB’s renowned Scientific Advisory Panel.

Funds will provide flexibility in developing and expanding eye research programs, and allow opportunities for creative planning that go beyond the scope of restricted project grants.

“Funding from RPB is essential to advancing several important projects taking place at the University of Iowa,” states department chair Dr. Keith Carter. “This type of research is ultimately what leads us to effective treatments in the clinic.”

UI laboratory projects advanced with RPB funding in 2020 include:

  • Explore mechanisms leading to retinal ganglion cell loss following blast-mediated traumatic brain injury (Lead researcher - Matt Harper, PhD)
  • Additional investigation of disease mechanisms underlying inherited retinal degenerations (Lead researcher – Seongjin Seo, PhD)
  • Study key differences of delivery methods used in preclinical models for the development of ocular gene therapies for humans (Lead researcher – Luke Wiley, PhD)

The UI Carver College of Medicine holds one of 32 RPB Unrestricted Grants nationwide. More information about RPB grant programs and awards at

Pictured above: Luke Wiley, PhD, is one of several University of Iowa scientists who is leveraging Research to Prevent Blindness grant funding to determine causes and potential treatments for blinding eye diseases.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020