The Board of Directors of the Blind Children’s Center remains committed to scientific research seeking cures for juvenile blindness. For 25 years our Medical Research Committee has made grants to worthy scientists from dozens of esteemed universities in a quest to prevent various forms of visual impairment in young people. The following is a full list of our current Medical Research Committee members and projects the Committee has chosen for funding

RFPs for grant proposals for fiscal year 2020/2021 are available now

Research Committee

Sherwin J. Isenberg, M.D.
Chairman & Professor of Pediatric Ophthalmology
Jules Stein Eye Institute, UCLA School of Medicine

Gerald Bowns, M.D.
Ophthalmologist & Clinical Assistant Professor
Pasadena Eye Medical Group & USC Keck School of Medicine

Diane Cullinane, M.D.
Executive Director
Professional Child Development Associates

Diane L. Fazzi, Ph.D.
Professor & Division Chair of Special Education and Counseling
California State University, Los Angeles

Robert Gordon, O.D.
Associate Dean of Clinical Affairs & Professor
College of Optometry, Western University of Health Sciences

Michael B. Gorin, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor Division Chief
Retinal Disorders and Ophthalmic Genetics Department of Ophthalmology, David Geffen School of Medicine

Samuel Masket, M.D.
Clinical Professor
Jules Stein Eye Institute, UCLA & founding partner of Advanced Vision Care

Research Projects


Dannak L. Murphy $10,000
Blind Babies Foundation
Pediatric Visual Diagnosis Fact Sheet

Mark Borchert, M.D. $9,654
Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
Prenatal & Clinical Risk Factors of Optic Nerve Hypoplasia


Irene Ludwig, M.D. $12,000
Louisiana State University Medical Center
Long Term Results of Accommodative Esotropia Treatment

Robert Reinecke, M.D. $4,000
Wills Eye Hospital, Philadelphia, PA
Nystagus & Head Movements in Children with ONH


Gerhard W. Cibis, M.D. $10,000
Wills Eye Hospital, Philadelphia, PA
Neural Network Analysis of Video Vision Development Assessment


Eric A. Pierce, M.D., Ph.D. $10,000
Children’s Hospital, Boston, MA
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) in ROP

Steven Brooks, M.D. $11,600
Medical College of Georgia Research Institute
Role of Nitric Oxide & Oxidative Stress in ROP


Anne B. Fulton, M.D. $12,500
Children’s Hospital, Boston, MA
Visual Acuity in Children with CVI


No proposals received, no project sponsored


Terri L. Young, M.D. $10,000
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Screening of Norrie Disease Gene Mutations in ROP

Elias Traboulsi, M.D. $10,000
Daniel Chung

Cole Eye Institute, The Cleveland Clinic
Identification of a New Gene for Autosomal Dominant Congenital Posterior Polar Cataracts on Chromosome 10Q


Mohamed A.W. Hussein, M.D. $12,500
David K. Coats, M.D.

Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Children’s Hospital,
Texas Medical Center Location, Clinical Care Center

Exploring the Causes of High Myopia Following Peripheral Retinal Ablation for ROP


Deborah Vanderveen, M.D. $12,500
Children’s Hospital, Boston, MA
Retinal Vasculature in Retinopathy of Prematurity:
A Study of the Tortuosity Index in Pre-term Infants


Teresa C. Chen, M.D. $12,500
Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts Eye & Ear Infirmary
Department of Ophthalmology

Risk Factors for Aphakic Glaucoma After Congenital Cataract Surgery


Maya Eibschitz, M.D. $12,500
W. K. Kellogg Eye Center, Department of Ophthalmology
University of Michigan Medical School

Improving Trabeculectomy Outcome in Children Using Human Amniotic Membrane


Dr. Noa Ela-Dalmon $15,000
Jules Stein Eye Institute
Optic Nerve Blood Flow and Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer Thickness in Patients with Unilateral Amblyopia


Professor Amy Needham $15,000
Duke University, Office of Research Support
Engaging Blind Infants in Objects


Thomas C. Lee, M.D. $20,000
Improving Retinal Stem Cell Proliferation

Dr. Eibschitz $6,250
Casey Eye Institute, Oregon Health Sciences University
ROP Pre-Pathology Diagnosis and Intervention


Dr. Brian T. Brooks $16,850
National Eye Institute
A Trial of Nitisinone (NTBC) As A Treatment for Oculocutaneous Albinism, Type 1


Ms. Tritia Woo, M.A., Doctorate Student $8,000
Visions: Visual Instructional Strategies in Occupational Therapy for Young Children


Jing Chen, Ph.D. $20,000
Children’s Hospital Boston
Micro RNA Control of Retinal Vascular & Neuronal Degeneration in ROP


None approved


Fatema Ghasia, M.D. $20,000*
Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of
Case Western Reserve University

Fixational Eye Movements (microsaccades) in Amblyopia
* Funds donated by Lisa Hansen, Norris Foundation


Carolyn Drews-Botsch, Ph.D., MPH $20,000
Emory University
Pilot Study of Reading Speed and Comprehension in Children Treated for Unilateral Congenital Cataracts


R.V. Paul Chan, M.D. $24,600
Illinois Eye and Ear Infirmary, University of Illinois at Chicago, College of Medicine
Characterization of Ocular Malformations in Infants with Possible Exposure to Zika Virus


Zhongjie Fu, PhD. $25,000
Boston Children’s Hospital
FGF21 Protects Against Hyperglycemia Associated ROP through Modulating Energy Metabolism


Brenda L. Bohnsack, M.D., Ph.D., $25,000
Kellogg Eye Center, University of Michigan, Department of Opthalamology and Visual Sciences
Understanding the Molecular Basis of Congenital Eye Defects Associated with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome