School of Medicine
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Geoffrey Craig Tabin, MD
Fairweather Foundation Professor
Bio Dr. Geoff Tabin is Co-Founder and Chairman of the Himalayan Cataract Project and a Professor of Ophthalmology and Global Medicine at Stanford University. He has published more than 45 peer-reviewed articles, two books and a dozen book chapters related to his work in ophthalmology and the developing world.
Dr. Tabin is the fourth person in the world to reach the tallest peak on each of the seven continents. His passion for mountain climbing directed him to his professional career in eye care. After summiting Mt. Everest, on one of his expeditions, he came across a Dutch team performing cataract surgery on a woman who had been needlessly blind for three years. It was then he understood his life calling.
Tabin graduated from Yale University and then earned an MA in Philosophy at Oxford University on a Marshall Scholarship. From there, he took his interest in moral philosophy and health care delivery to Harvard Medical School where he earned his MD in 1985. After completing an ophthalmology residency at Brown University and a fellowship in corneal surgery in Melbourne, Australia, Dr. Tabin returned to Nepal to work with Dr. Sanduk Ruit.
Tabin and Nepalese eye surgeon Dr. Sanduk Ruit established the Himalayan Cataract Project in 1995 ? with a vow to work to eliminate all preventable and treatable blindness from the Himalayan region in their lifetime, a goal, in Tabin?s words, ?more audacious than setting out to make the first assent of the East Face of Mount Everest.? Dr. Ruit, whom the Associated Press heralded as the ?god of sight? to the world?s poor, and Tabin have proven that hospital quality standards can be applied in impoverished areas devoid of electricity and clean water. Their successful approach to restoring sight and dogged perseverance has made possible what 20 years ago seemed impossible.
The Himalayan Cataract Project has since expanded beyond the Himalayas to encompass Sub-Saharan Africa as well. Dr.Tabin spends a considerable part of the year working abroad throughout the Himalayas and Sub-Saharan Africa. At Stanford his practice focus encompasses surgery and treatment of diseases of the anterior and external eye including cataract and corneal surgery.
Associate Professor of Genetics and, by courtesy, of Ophthalmology
Current Research and Scholarly Interests The Vollrath lab works to uncover molecular mechanisms relevant to the health and pathology of the outer retina. We study the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), a cell monolayer adjacent to photoreceptors that performs a variety of tasks crucial for retinal homeostasis. Specific areas of interest include the circadian regulation of RPE phagocytosis of photoreceptor outer segment tips, and how RPE metabolic dysfunction contributes to retinal degenerative diseases.
Brian A. Wandell
Isaac and Madeline Stein Family Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Electrical Engineering, of Ophthalmology and at the Graduate School of Education
Current Research and Scholarly Interests Models and measures of the human visual system. The brain pathways essential for reading development. Diffusion tensor imaging, functional magnetic resonance imaging and computational modeling of visual perception and brain processes.
Sophia Ying Wang, MD
Clinical Instructor, Ophthalmology
Current Research and Scholarly Interests I use and integrate a wide variety of data sources in my research, spanning both structured and unstructured forms, including national survey datasets, health insurance claims data, patient generated online text, surgical video, and electronic health records. I investigate outcomes of treatments for glaucoma and cataract, as well as other areas of ophthalmology. My focus is developing and applying novel methods for automated extraction of ophthalmic data, especially from free text and video.
Sui Wang, PhD
Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology
Current Research and Scholarly Interests Our research focuses on understanding the molecular mechanisms that underlie retinal development and diseases. We utilize genetic and genomic tools to uncover how different types of retinal cells, including retinal neurons, glia and the vasculature, respond to developmental cues and disease insults at the epigenomic and transcriptional levels, and how they interact and collectively contribute to the integrity of the retina.
1. Retinal cell fate specification.
We are using genetic tools and methods, such as in vivo plasmid electroporation and CRISPR, to dissect the roles of cis-regulatory elements and transcription factors in controlling retinal cell fate specification.
2. The multicellular responses elicited by diabetes in the retina.
Diabetes can induce multicellular responses in the retina, including vascular lesions, glial dysfunction and neurodegeneration, all of which contribute to retinopathy. We are using diabetic rats as models to investigate the detailed molecular mechanisms underlying the diabetes-induced multicellular responses, and the disease mechanisms of diabetic retinopathy.
3. Molecular tools that allow for cell type-specific labeling and manipulation in vivo.
Cis-regulatory elements, such as enhancers, play essential roles in directing tissue/cell type-specific and stage-specific expression. We are interested in identifying enhancers that can drive cell type-specific expression in the retina and brain, and incorporating them into plasmid or AAV based delivery systems.