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CANCELED // George Kambara, MD, Vision Science Symposium

April 17 @ 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

We HAVE CANCELED thIS EVENT AND THE following Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences events due to the developing health risks posed by the coronavirus (COVID-19) and guidance by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, UW Health and UW–Madison:

  • March 20 – GRAND ROUNDS // CANCELED // VISITING PROFESSORS: Arpan Gandhi, MBBS, MD, Shroff’s Charity Eye Hospital; Scott Barnes, MD
  • March 27 – GRAND ROUNDS // CANCELED // Meisha Raven, DO; Elaine Downie, MD; Nicholas Pytel, DO
  • April 3 – DE VENECIA MEMORIAL LECTURE // POSTPONED // Catherine Macaraig, MD, University of Santo Tomas
  • April 10 – GRAND ROUNDS // CANCELED // VISITING PROFESSOR: Eve Higgenbotham, SM, MD, University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine

Event cancelation is part of a larger proactive UW–Madison campus and SMPH plan to minimize person-to-person spread of COVID-19 in our community. Thank you for your understanding.

KEYNOTE SPEAKER: RACHEL Wong, PHD, professor, CHAIR of the Department of Biological Structure, University of Washington in Seattle, wa

“Mechanisms Underlying Synaptic Wiring Specificity in the Vertebrate Retina”

Dr. Wong’s laboratory is currently investigating the cellular mechanisms and developmental strategies that establish excitatory and inhibitory circuits in the mammalian retina. By taking advantage of the zebrafish’s capacity to regenerate neurons, they are also determining how newly-generated neurons integrate into existing circuitry.



  • Iris Kassem, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Assistant Professor of Cell Biology, Neurobiology, and Anatomy at the Medical College of Wisconsin
    • The central hypothesis is that children have intrinsic differences in the response to intraocular surgery that result in more inflammation and scarring compared to adults. We are currently investigating age-related changes in aqueous humor and investigating the efficacy of pharmacologic intervention on reduction of inflammation and scarring after eye surgery.
  • Matthew Veldman, PhD, Assistant Professor of Cell Biology, Neurobiology and Anatomy at the Medical College of Wisconsin: “Ganglion Cell Intrinsic and Extrinsic Mechanisms of Successful Optic Nerve Regeneration”
    • Our initial focus is on applying modern molecular biological methods (such as CRISPR-Cas9, RNA-seq, ATAC-seq, etc.) to study the cell intrinsic and extrinsic mechanisms of successful optic nerve regeneration in the zebrafish visual system and compare these mechanisms to those in mammals, which fail to regenerate and suffer from degeneration.
  • Henar Cuervo Grajal, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Physiology and Biostatistics at the University of Illinois
    • The Cuervo lab utilizes a combination of transgenic mouse models and in vitro methods to delineate the role of perivascular cells in developmental and pathological settings. Particularly, we are interested in the function of Notch signaling in pericytes in arteriovenous malformations, diabetic retinopathy, neurodegenerative diseases, fibrosis, and tumor angiogenesis.



April 17
8:00 am - 4:00 pm
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