Director of Oculoplastics Research, Department of Ophthalmology, Stanford School of Medicine (2017 - Present)


  • An organism-wide atlas of hormonal signaling based on the mouse lemur single-cell transcriptome. Nature communications Liu, S., Ezran, C., Wang, M. F., Li, Z., Awayan, K., Long, J. Z., De Vlaminck, I., Wang, S., Epelbaum, J., Kuo, C. S., Terrien, J., Krasnow, M. A., Ferrell, J. E. 2024; 15 (1): 2188


    Hormones mediate long-range cell communication and play vital roles in physiology, metabolism, and health. Traditionally, endocrinologists have focused on one hormone or organ system at a time. Yet, hormone signaling by its very nature connects cells of different organs and involves crosstalk of different hormones. Here, we leverage the organism-wide single cell transcriptional atlas of a non-human primate, the mouse lemur (Microcebus murinus), to systematically map source and target cells for 84 classes of hormones. This work uncovers previously-uncharacterized sites of hormone regulation, and shows that the hormonal signaling network is densely connected, decentralized, and rich in feedback loops. Evolutionary comparisons of hormonal genes and their expression patterns show that mouse lemur better models human hormonal signaling than mouse, at both the genomic and transcriptomic levels, and reveal primate-specific rewiring of hormone-producing/target cells. This work complements the scale and resolution of classical endocrine studies and sheds light on primate hormone regulation.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41467-024-46070-9

    View details for PubMedID 38467625

    View details for PubMedCentralID 1540572

  • Functional Oculofacial Abstracts. Ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery Ali, M. J., Bernardini, F. P., Savar, A., Wu, A. Y., Tawfik, H. A. 2024; 40 (2): 233-234

    View details for DOI 10.1097/IOP.0000000000002612

    View details for PubMedID 38427839

  • Research productivity and gender of research award recipients in international ophthalmology societies. BMJ open ophthalmology Nguyen, A. X., Venkatesh, D. S., Biyani, A., Ratan, S., Youn, G. M., Wu, A. Y. 2024; 9 (1)


    The purpose of this study is to assess the research productivity and gender of award recipients of ophthalmology research awards in international societies.This is a retrospective, observational study. The study population included award recipients of research awards from 36 ophthalmologic societies (listed on the International Council of Ophthalmology database) in 99 years (1922-2021). A gender-specific pronoun and a photograph of each award recipient were extracted from professional websites to assign their gender. Research productivity levels were retrieved from the Elsevier Scopus author database. The main outcome measures were gender distribution of award recipients per year, mean h-index per year, mean m-quotient per year, mean h-index by society, and mean m-quotient by society.Out of 2506 recipients for 122 awards, 1897 (75.7%) were men and 609 (24.3%) were women. The proportion of woman recipients increased from 0% in 1922 to 41.0% in 2021. Compared with 2000-2010 (19.8%, 109 of 550), women received a greater proportion of awards (48.4%, 459 of 949) in the last decade, from 2011 to 2021. Furthermore, men more often had greater h-index scores and m-quotient scores.Women received awards (24.3%) at a lower rate than men (75.7%) while also exhibiting lower productivity, supporting the existence of a gender disparity. Our study found that women are under-represented in research awards, and further investigation into award selection processes and gender membership data is recommended.

    View details for DOI 10.1136/bmjophth-2023-001323

    View details for PubMedID 38417914

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC10900313

  • Functional Oculofacial Abstracts. Ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery Ali, M. J., Bernardini, F. P., Savar, A., Wu, A. Y., Tawfik, H. A. 2024; 40 (1): 121-122

    View details for DOI 10.1097/IOP.0000000000002576

    View details for PubMedID 38241627

  • BDNF and cAMP are neuroprotective in a porcine model of traumatic optic neuropathy. JCI insight Heng, K., Young, B. K., Li, B., Nies, A. D., Xia, X., Wen, R. R., Dalal, R., Bramblett, G. T., Holt, A. W., Cleland, J. M., Harris, J. N., Wu, A. Y., Goldberg, J. L. 2024


    Traumatic optic neuropathy (TON) is a devastating condition that can occur after blunt or penetrating trauma to the head, leading to visual impairment or blindness. Despite these debilitating effects, no clinically available therapeutic targets neuroprotection or promotes axon regeneration in this or any optic neuropathy. Limited data in large animal models is a major obstacle to advancing treatments toward clinical therapeutics. To address this issue, we refined a surgical model of TON in Yucatan minipigs. First, we validated the model by demonstrating visual impairment by flash visual-evoked potential and retinal ganglion cell degeneration and death. Next, we developed and optimized a delivery method and non-toxic dosing of intravitreal brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP). Finally, we showed that intravitreal injection of BDNF and cAMP rescued visual function and protected against retinal ganglion cell death and optic nerve axon degeneration. Together these data in a pre-clinical large animal model advance our understanding of and ability to model TON and further identify and develop candidate clinical therapeutics.

    View details for DOI 10.1172/jci.insight.172935

    View details for PubMedID 38194296

  • Gender and research productivity of award recipients among Canadian national ophthalmology and affiliate subspecialty societies. Women's health (London, England) Nguyen, A. X., Zahedi-Niaki, G., Lando, L., Hutnik, C. M., Wu, A. Y. 2023; 19: 17455057231219613


    Although women remain historically underrepresented in medical achievement awards, gender distribution of award recipients in ophthalmology in Canada remain to be explored based on research productivity metrics.To characterize the gender distribution of award recipients among the main Canadian national ophthalmological societies and subspecialty affiliates based on research productivity, graduate degrees, affiliated institution, and award type.Retrospective, observational study.Award recipients were selected from the Canadian Ophthalmological Society (COS), Canadian Association of Paediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus (CAPOS); Canadian Cornea, External Disease, and Refractive Surgery Society (CCEDRSS); Canadian Council of Ophthalmology Residents (CCOR) Research Proposal Award; and Canadian Glaucoma Society (CGS). The recipients' gender was determined by web search for the gender-specific pronoun, profile photograph check, or using Gender-API. Outcomes included gender distribution of recipients per award, society, year, and training level and differences in research productivity.Thirteen special awards were given to 255 recipients (215 individuals) from 1995 to 2022. In total, 31% of recipients were women, the majority being from Canada. Women had a significantly lower median h-index (2.0 (0-62) women versus 4.0 (0-81) men, p = 0.001) and number of published documents (3.0 (0-213) women versus 8.0 (0-447) men, p < 0.001). On stratified analyses by type of award (research or lifetime achievement) and level of training (trainee or ophthalmologist), significant differences were found for mean h-index and number of publications for awardees within the research category (p = 0.01 and p = 0.02, respectively) and trainee level (p = 0.01 and p = 0.02, respectively). Overall, women's proportion rates in awards did not reach parity in 27 out of the 28 years analyzed.Women were confirmed to be historically minored in proportion among the prominent society awards in Canada, with attested research disparity possibly explaining some of this bias. These findings require further confirmation in larger cohorts accounting for additional educational, institutional, and provincial factors.Not applicable.

    View details for DOI 10.1177/17455057231219613

    View details for PubMedID 38130083

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC10748528

  • Regenerated Corneal Epithelium Expresses More βIII-Tubulin After Chemical Injuries Compared to Mechanical Injuries. Translational vision science & technology Shadmani, A., Ercal, O., Uzun, S., Swarup, A., Wu, A. Y. 2023; 12 (12): 12


    Defining the regenerative response following various types of corneal chemical and mechanical injuries is important for understanding the pathophysiology of the injury and evaluating the effectiveness of the therapies. This study characterizes corneal epithelial healing in a murine chemical and mechanical injury model.Four groups of 10 mice each received complete corneolimbal injuries by AlgerBrush, AlgerBrush/thermal, NaOH (0.5 N), or ethanol. Slit-lamp and optical coherence tomography examinations were performed daily for 14 days. Corneal opacity (CO) and neovascularization (NV) were evaluated. The origin of the regenerated epithelium was illustrated by anti-cytokeratin 12 (K12) and anti-K13. The height of regenerated corneal epithelium and intraepithelial free nerve endings (FNEs) stained with anti-βIII-tubulin were measured. The amount of fibrosis was measured by anti-α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) monoclonal antibody in the different groups. Statistical analysis was performed by ANOVA and t-test.Corneal opacity and neovascularization were markedly higher in the NaOH and AlgerBrush/thermal groups. Molecular studies revealed the following: Regenerated corneal epithelium thickness was less than normal in all groups, the AlgerBrush group had the shortest height of the regenerated epithelium, βIII-tubulin was expressed in the entire height of corneal epithelium in all groups except in the AlgerBrush group, and K12 was replaced by K13 in all groups.Corneal wound healing is more effective following chemical injuries in terms of epithelial thickness. Inflammation may play an important role in the outcome.Inflammation following different injuries may be redirected to be more effective in corneal regeneration and clarity.

    View details for DOI 10.1167/tvst.12.12.12

    View details for PubMedID 38085248

  • Single-cell transcriptomic analysis of corneal organoids during development. Stem cell reports Swarup, A., Phansalkar, R., Morri, M., Agarwal, A., Subramaniam, V., Li, B., Wu, A. Y. 2023


    Corneal organoids are useful tools for disease modeling and tissue transplantation; however, they have not yet been well studied during maturation. We characterized human iPSC-derived corneal organoids at 1, 2, 3, and 4 months of development using single-cell RNA sequencing to determine the cellular heterogeneity at each stage. We found pluripotent cell clusters committed to epithelial cell lineage at 1 month; early corneal epithelial, endothelial, and stromal cell markers at 2 months; keratocytes as the largest cell population at 3 months; and a large epithelial cell population at 4 months. We compared organoid to fetal corneal development at different stages and found that 4-month organoids closely resemble the corneal cellular complexity of the fetal (16 post conception week) and adult cornea. Using RNA velocity trajectory analysis, we found that less differentiated cells appear to give rise to corneal epithelial cells during development.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.stemcr.2023.10.022

    View details for PubMedID 38039970

Other Lab Members

Kim JY, Park J, Kim DH, Gardner B, Jenkins S, McGahan PJ, Chen JL. Revision Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction: Tibial Tunnel First Graft Sizing Technique. Arthrosc Tech. 2021 Nov 29;10(12):e2797-e2803. doi:10.1016/j.eats.2021.08.017

Kim JY, Park HY, Del Sol SR, Bryant S, Gardner B, Chakrabarti MO, Perinovic S, McGahan PJ, Chen JL. Arthroscopic Single Portal, Single Anchor Knotless Subscapularis Repair with Concomitant Tenodesis of the Long Head of the Biceps Tendon. Arthrosc Tech. 2021 Mar 22;10(4):e1117-e1123. doi: 10.1016/j.eats.2021.01.002. PMID: 33981559; PMCID: PMC8085439.

Kim JY, Park HY, Bryant S, Gardner B, Chakrabarti M, McGahan P, Chen JL. Combined Coracoclavicular and Acromioclavicular Joint Reconstruction with Allograft Using a Cerclage Tensioning System. Arthrosc Tech. 2021 Jan 16;10(2):e317-e323. doi: 10.1016/j.eats.2020.10.013. PMID: 33680762; PMCID: PMC7917031.

Kim JY, Bryant S, Gardner B, Park HY, Tse W, Chakrabarti M, McGahan P, Chen JL. Distal Clavicle Excision for Acromioclavicular Joint Osteoarthritis Using a Fluoroscopic Kirschner Wire Guide. Arthrosc Tech. 2021 Jan 16;10(2):e359-e365. doi: 10.1016/j.eats.2020.10.010. PMID: 33680767; PMCID: PMC7917026.

Park HY, Gardner B, Kim JY, Bryant S, Chakrabarti M, McGahan P, Chen JL. Four-Strand Hamstring Diamond Braid Technique for Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction. Arthrosc Tech. 2021 Mar 22;10(4):e1173-e1177. doi: 10.1016/j.eats.2021.01.011. PMID: 33981567; PMCID: PMC8085571.

Bryant SA, Trang G, Nash HM, Gardner BB, Kim JY, Park HY, Chakrabarti M, McGahan P, Chen JL. Mini-Open Achilles Repair With a Flat Braided Suture in a Low-Profile Configuration. Arthrosc Tech. 2021 Jan 16;10(2):e451-e455. doi: 10.1016/j.eats.2020.10.019. PMID: 33680778; PMCID: PMC791708

Nguyen AX, Ratan S, Biyani A, Trinh XV, Saleh S, Sun Y, Wu AY. Gender of Award Recipients in Major Ophthalmology Societies. Am J Ophthalmol. 2021 Nov;231:120-133. doi: 10.1016/j.ajo.2021.05.021. Epub 2021 Jun 6. PMID: 34102152; PMCID: PMC8608693.

Nguyen AX, Yoffe L, Li A, Trinh XV, Kurian J, Moss HE, Wu AY. Gender Gap in Neurology Research Authorship (1946-2020). Front Neurol. 2021 Aug 23;12:715428. 

Sanyam Ratan, Anne Xuan-Lan Nguyen, Ankita Biyani, Xuan-Vi Trinh, Yang Sun, Solin Saleh, Albert Y. Wu; Gender Gap in the Award Recipients of the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2021;62(8):65.