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Recent News

Australian Vision Research welcomes Phillip Cenere as its new CEO

Australian Vision Research welcomes Phillip Cenere as its new CEO. Phillip has extensive experience as a board and management consultant and has served in senior leadership roles within universities including as Associate Vice Chancellor, CEO, Executive Dean and Professor.

“I’m honored to join Australian Vision Research which has distributed millions of dollars through annual grants to fund research that has changed lives and advanced the knowledge and practice of medicine. The impact of our support extends beyond academic success through to contributions to the professions, our community and the health economy”, said Phillip.

“I’m looking forward to working with our dedicated board at Australian Vision Research and our partners and stakeholders including The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Ophthalmologists (RANZCO).”

2021-2022 Grant Recipients Announced

Robyn Jamieson Therapies for the cone-rod dystrophies John Grigg University of Sydney, Save Sight Institute and Children’s Medical Research Institute, NSW
Stephanie Watson The Bacterial Ocular Surveillance System (BOSS) Monica Lahra, Richard Mills, Steve Wiffen, Maria Cabrera-Aguas, Evan Wong, Jonathan Chung-Wah-Cheong University of Sydney, Save Sight Institute, NSW
Fan Fan Zhou  Develop novel therapy for human Uveal Melanoma Robert Max Conway, Svetlana Cherepanoff  The University of Sydney, Sydney Pharmacy School, NSW
Ling Zhu Targeting Nrf2-MAFF pathway in Müller cells to treat macula degeneration Mark Gillies, Ting Zhang Save Sight Institute, Faculty of Medicine and Health, the University of Sydney, NSW
Vivek Gupta Amyloid and Tau targeting to protect Retinal Ganglion Cell and Optic Nerve in glaucoma  Stuart Graham, Mehdi Mirzaei Macquarie University, NSW
Kathryn Burdon Genetic indicators of treatment response to anti-VEGF intraocular injections for diabetic macular oedema Nitin Verma, Rajya Gurung, Brendan Vote, Bennet McComish University of Tasmania, Menzies Institute for Medical Research, TAS
Ayub Qassim Identifying cardiovascular disease parameters with high clinical relevance in primary open-angle glaucoma John Landers, Henry Marshall Department of Ophthalmology, Flinders, SA
Peter van Wijngaarden  Hyperspectral retinal imaging perfusion maps for retinal vascular diseases Xavier Hadoux, Lyndell Lim, Amy Cohn, Darvy Dang Centre for Eye Research Australia, VIC
Devaraj Basavarajappa The next generation of medicine-Gene therapy for glaucoma Nitin Chitranshi, Deepa Viswanathan Macquarie University, NSW
Jessica Mountford Establishing zebrafish morpholino as a model to study early-onset myopia.   Livia Carvalho, Patricia Jusuf, Antony Clark The University of Western Australia/Centre for Ophthalmology and Visual Science, WA

2021 ORIA Grant Scheme goes virtual

Can a research committee meeting be held over Zoom? This was the question the ORIA asked when COVID-19 hit. With 37 applications submitted to the 2021 ORIA grant round and 14 panel members and 56 reviewers lined up, ORIA held an online committee meeting on 19 September. Prof Alex Hewitt, Chair and A/Prof Samantha Fraser-Bell, Secretary of the Research Committee have worked hard to put this together with new ORIA CEO, Diane Harapin.

This year, applications have been received from ophthalmic institutes all across Australia. Like many organisations, COVID-19 has impacted ORIA’s financial position and it will be likely that fewer grants will be funded this year.
Prof Stephanie Watson, Chair of the ORIA commented, “The standard of ophthalmic research in Australia is really high and many more grants eligible than we can fund. It will be disappointing not to be able to provide assistance to all the excellent projects working towards improving outcomes for our patients.”

In the 2020 ORIA grant round, we received many more grants than we could fund. This limited the ability of Australian ophthalmology to discover new knowledge and work towards improving outcomes for patients; as well as promoting excellence in Australian ophthalmology internationally and to the public.

The ORIA is reliant on their members – the RANZCO Fellows and generous donations for support. Prof Mark Gillies, Vice-Chair of the ORIA says, “Supporting the ORIA is a great way to give back to profession. The ORIA grant program allows excellent research that informs patient management but also supports the careers in ophthalmic research.” We were grateful to the Perth Eye Surgeons Foundation, NSW Branch of RANZCO and Australia and New Zealand Eye Foundation (ANZEF) among other generous donors.”

The Sydney Long collection has also raised the profile of the ORIA. This year, the ORIA has been acknowledged by the New South Wales Art Gallery for the use of Midday (1986, an oil on canvas) in the ‘Fieldwork’ touring exhibition.

Prof Stephanie Watson
Chair, ORIA