Newsletter - 2010, Volume 13, Number 1

Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate
Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate
AOI Members gathered for the Business Meeting in Berlin in the Funkturm Lounge at the Radio Tower in the ICC complex
AOI Members gathered for the Business Meeting in Berlin in the Funkturm Lounge at the Radio Tower in the ICC complex

Message from the President, Prof. Paul R. Lichter

As the Academia’s new President, my first Newsletter message is to recognize, with gratitude and admiration, the superb contributions to the Academia made by outgoing President Professor Peter Watson of Cambridge, England. (Highlights of Prof. Watson’s contributions to ophthalmology were reviewed by Prof. Juan Verdaguer in introducing Prof. Watson as the AOI Lecturer during the WOC in Berlin. View the slides of this introduction (powerpoint).

Prof. Watson assumed the AOI presidency in 2006 in Sao Paolo and, as a relative newcomer to the organization, recognized that simply having our annual business meeting, special scientific session and social interactions was wasting the potential of the collective membership. Prof. Watson set out to expand the activities of AOI members in presenting symposia at regional and multinational meetings and in having more members seek to label as an AOI Lecture their talks of 20 minutes or more in length delivered at any scientific meeting beyond their local area. These activities have broadened the visibility of the Academia and have utilized the enormous talent and experience of our membership.

In addition, Prof. Watson has emphasized the role that the Academia might play in representing academic ophthalmology world-wide, an institution that Prof. Watson views as under threat due to poor funding and poor general support from medical schools.

The Academia has been supporting two ICO Fellowships each year and Prof. Watson has been able to utilize his personal involvement with that program to further the AOI’s commitment to it.

Besides his specific plans and success in delivering on them, I’d like to also recognize Prof. Watson’s personal efforts at representing the AOI in meetings in many places in the world. He has urged the Membership to recognize that if the AOI is to realize its great potential as an organization by virtue of the collective expertise and wisdom of its accomplished membership, then the AOI needs to be visible—more than once each year.

In an organization like ours, it is easy to simply maintain the status quo. Interest in being elected to AOI membership continues to be strong. However, the attainment of membership needs to bring with it an obligation to support the small organization that we are wherein each member is important to its success.

In that context, there are two outgoing officers who have been stalwart supporters of the Academia and deserve our recognition and gratitude. Outgoing First Vice-President, Prof. Juan Verdaguer has organized several AOI Symposia and has provided his expertise and advice to the Membership and Nominating Committee and to the Executive Board. Outgoing Treasurer, Prof. Balder Gloor, provided his superb management skills to keeping the books of the organization and in providing excellent advice regarding monetary matters. Both of these outgoing officers will leave big shoes to fill and we are grateful to them for their service.

The new officers—Prof. Pran Nagpal, First Vice-President; Prof. Hugh Taylor, Second Vice-President; Prof. Peter Wiedemann, Secretary-General; and Prof. Marie-José-Tassignon, Treasurer—are committed to taking a fresh look at the AOI. I want to express our appreciation to each one of them for their willingness to serve the Academia despite their heavy schedules and commitments to their own local, regional and other international responsibilities.

Our next meeting takes place next March in Sydney, Australia, in conjunction with the Asia Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology congress. I look forward to seeing you there.

Paul R. Lichter, M.D.
President

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XXXVI AOI Meeting—Berlin, Germany—June 5, 2010

The XXXVI Meeting of the Academic Ophthalmologica Internationalis took place in Berlin, Germany in conjunction with the World Congress of Ophthalmology and the Meeting of the International Council of Ophthalmology.

Members and their guests had ample opportunity to participate in Congress activities as well as take in the sights of Berlin and its strong ophthalmic history.

 

Academicians Jialiang Zhou, Stephen Ryan, Peter Wiedemann, and Tatsuro Ishibabshi visited the famous Albrecht von Graefe monument
Academicians Jialiang Zhou, Stephen Ryan, Peter Wiedemann, and Tatsuro Ishibabshi visited the famous Albrecht von Graefe monument
Academician and WOC President Prof Gerhard Lang and AOI Secretary-General and incoming President Prof. Paul Lichter at the rooftop cocktail party
Academician and WOC President Prof Gerhard Lang and AOI Secretary-General and incoming President Prof. Paul Lichter at the rooftop cocktail party
Incoming AOI 2nd Vice-President, Prof. Hugh Taylor and his wife, Dr. Liz Taylor enjoying the rooftop view
Incoming AOI 2nd Vice-President, Prof. Hugh Taylor and his wife, Dr. Liz Taylor enjoying the rooftop view
Newly-elected Academician Prof. Martine Jager and colleagues in conversation at the annual ICO/AOI dinner in the Hotel de Rome
Newly-elected Academician Prof. Martine Jager and colleagues in conversation at the annual ICO/AOI dinner in the Hotel de Rome
Enjoying a relaxing moment following the WOC evening concert are left to right WOC President and Academician Prof. Gerhard Lang, AOI President Prof. Peter Watson, WOC Scientific Program co-chair Dr. Gabriele Lang, and ICO Secretary-General and Academician Prof. Jean-Jacques DeLaey
Enjoying a relaxing moment following the WOC evening concert are left to right WOC President and Academician Prof. Gerhard Lang, AOI President Prof. Peter Watson, WOC Scientific Program co-chair Dr. Gabriele Lang, and ICO Secretary-General and Academician

Social events included a dinner held at the Berliner Club with the Executive Committee of the WOC, the WOC President’s Reception at the Opernpalais, and the annual ICO/AOI dinner, this year at the Hotel de Rome, preceded by a sun-drenched rooftop reception that provided a view of the statue of Helmholtz in front of Humboldt University.

Helmholtz statue and Humboldt University
Helmholtz statue and Humboldt University

We are grateful to the WOC and the German Ophthalmological Society for their hospitality during our visit to Berlin. The WOC meeting was organized beautifully under the leadership of its President, Academician Prof. Gerhard Lang who was ably assisted by his wife, Dr. Gabriele Lang and Academician, Prof. Stephen Ryan who chaired the planning and execution of a most impressive scientific program.

An Oktoberfest—in June—extravaganza, held in a former airline Hangar, provided WOC attendees and their guests a wonderful sampling of German food, spirits, and entertainment.
An Oktoberfest—in June—extravaganza, held in a former airline Hangar, provided WOC attendees and their guests a wonderful sampling of German food, spirits, and entertainment.

At the conclusion of our Special Scientific Session on Saturday, June 5th, the annual Academia Luncheon was held in honor of our AOI Orator, Prof. Dr. Jens-Martin Rohrbach of Tuebingen, Germany.

Incoming Secretary-General, Prof. Peter Wiedemann, at the AOI Luncheon
Incoming Secretary-General, Prof. Peter Wiedemann, at the AOI Luncheon

Fifty-two Academicians attended the AOI Business Meeting.

2010 meeting attendees gather for photograph near the Funkturm Lounge.
2010 meeting attendees gather for photograph near the Funkturm Lounge.

Front row (l. to r.): Profs. Alió, Miyake, Dua, Shimizu, Süveges, Zhao, Maumenee, Soubrane, Pres. Watson, Lichter, Nagpal, Coscas, Cunha-Vaz, Rodriguez, Theodossiadis, Tso, Brancato, Straatsma, Gloor.

Back row (l. to r.): Profs. Luntz, Contreras, Sommer, Wiedemann, Moore, DeLaey, Murubé, Burnier, Graue, Vassileva, Verdaguer, Abbott, Spivey, Smith, Bandello, Murray, Naumann, Ryan, Taylor, Tasman, R. Barraquer, Parke, III, Ishibashi, Sieving, Belfort, Constable, Wessing, N. Rao.

(Not pictured: Profs. J. Barraquer, Lang, G. Rao, Tassignon, and Zagorski)

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New Academicians Inducted into the AOI

Professors Harminder Dua (Chair V), David Parke, III (Chair LXVI), and Petja Vassileva (Chair LXV) received their certificates, medals, and pins from Prof. Watson. The new inductees are pictured below.

(l. to r.) Profs. David Parke, III, Pres. Watson, Verdaguer, Nagpal, Gloor, and Lichter
(l. to r.) Profs. David Parke, III, Pres. Watson, Verdaguer, Nagpal, Gloor, and Lichter
(l. to r.) Profs. Petja Vassileva, Pres. Watson, Verdaguer, Nagpal, Gloor, and Lichter
(l. to r.) Profs. Petja Vassileva, Pres. Watson, Verdaguer, Nagpal, Gloor, and Lichter
(l. to r.) Profs. Harminder Dua, Pres. Watson, Verdaguer, Nagpal, and Lichter
(l. to r.) Profs. Harminder Dua, Pres. Watson, Verdaguer, Nagpal, and Lichter

Academia Elects New Members

Outstanding candidates were nominated for membership in the AOI and six new members were elected.

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Professor Daniel E. Etya’ale, M.D., elected to the AOI (Chair XV)

Prof. Daniel Etya'ale obtained his MD degree with honors in 1977 from the Medical School of Yaounde, Cameroon. His interest in ophthalmology started in Lunsar Eye Hospital, Sierra Leone, and from 1984 until 1986 Prof. Etya’ale trained at the Tennent Institute of Ophthalmology, in Glasgow and obtained a Diploma in Ophthalmology. Prof. Etya'ale was Medical Director of Enongal Presbyterian Hospital in Ebolowa in Southern Cameroon, and Medical Consultant to CBM for Central Africa before training in Community Eye Health at the International Centre for Eye Health.

During his work at Enongal, Prof. Etyá ale developed a comprehensive eye care delivery service for the entire Ebolowa district and created an outreach program and the establishment of secondary eye centers for cataract and glaucoma surgery. He also trained general doctors in primary eye care.
As Medical Consultant to Christoffel-Blindenmission for Central Africa, Prof. Eyta’ale trained eye workers and doctors in primary eye care and cataract surgery. He developed the first pilot Mectizan distribution projects in Cameroon and in North West Central African Republic, through CBM partner projects. His work also involved advocacy with governments and Prof. Etya’ ale later negotiated with the Central African Republic government and initiated the National Mectizan Distribution Program in the CAR. He also was involved in discussions with the government of Sao Tome and Principe for the creation of a prevention of blindness program in collaboration with CBM.

From 1993 – 1999, Prof. Etya'ale was a member of the Mectizan Expert Committee and was appointed Co-coordinator at the World Health Organization for the NGDO Group for Onchocerciasis Control in 1996. He was responsible for the development and co-ordination of the work for Mectizan distribution in Africa and Central and Latin America. He also served as liaison between the African Program for Onchocerciasis Control (APOC), the World Bank, the Lions SightFirst Program and the Mectizan Donation Program. He evaluated Mectizan distribution and blindness prevention projects through sub-Saharan Africa.

From October 1999 to date, Prof. Etya'ale has been highly involved with the World Health Organization in Geneva, where he is responsible for the promotion, development, implementation and coordination of VISION 2020 activities throughout Africa.

Prof. Etya'ale has developed a database of eye care structures and services in Africa, and maps the needs, priorities and constraints in each country. He evaluates ongoing VISION 2020 activities and assists national programs to align their goals with the aims and objectives of VISION 2020. Prof. Etya’ ale is also the CEO of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness Africa.

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Professor Martine J. Jager, M.D., Ph.D., elected to the AOI (Chair XII)

Prof. Martine J.Jager is Head of the Laboratory of the Department of Ophthalmology at Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, the Netherlands. She received her medical degree from Leiden University and then worked for several years at the Department of Immunohaematology and Bloodbank. Prof. Jager received her doctorate for the identification of two new polymorphic antigens present on monocytes. Following her residency in Ophthalmology at the University of Amsterdam, she spent time in the laboratory of Professor Wayne Streilein in Miami, and completed a fellowship in corneal diseases at the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Miami, Fla. After receiving a fellowship from the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, she established her own laboratory in Leiden, which focuses on ocular immunology and oncology. In 1995 she received the Marie Parijs Award for excellence in translational research. In 1999, she worked at the Schepens Eye Research Institute, Harvard Medical School, as visiting associate professor. Prof. Jager is involved in several eye research organizations, including the International Society for Ocular Oncology and the European Society for Vision and Eye Research. She has served as Trustee of ARVO’s Anatomy & Pathology Section since 2003, was elected as the first international President of ARVO in 2007 and an ARVO Gold Fellow in 2009.

Prof. Jager is involved in numerous international activities; has many editorial and journal responsibilities and has supervised a long list of postdoctoral students. She has over 138 publications to her credit.

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Professor Charles N.J. McGhee, MBChB, BSc(Hons), PhD, FRCS, FRCOphth, FRANZCO, FRSA, elected to the AOI (Chair XXIV)

Prof. Charles McGhee obtained a BSc in ocular pathology, graduating from Glasgow with first class honors before completing his medical degree at the University of Glasgow (1983). Subsequently, he had seven years of ophthalmology training in Glasgow with additional sub-speciality fellowship training in cornea and oculoplastics in Perth, Western Australia. He was appointed Consultant Ophthalmologist and Professor of Ocular Therapeutics (Sunderland 1993) and Professor and Chair of Ophthalmology (Dundee 1996). Currently he is the Maurice Paykel Foundation Professor and Chair of Ophthalmology, University of Auckland. He was also the Clinical Director of Ophthalmology, Auckland District Health Board (1999-2006) with a clinical leadership role for 90 clinical staff, including 26 sub-specialist ophthalmologists, 8 registrars and 6 fellows, who perform around 50,000 outpatient reviews and more than 6,000 surgical procedures per annum in Auckland City Hospital, the major tertiary referral centre in New Zealand. He is the Director of the recently established (2008) New Zealand National Eye Centre which brings together 120 scientists and clinicians from diverse ophthalmology, optometry and laboratory groups to form one of the largest vision research groups in the southern hemisphere. He has published approximately 250 articles, including more than 200 peer-reviewed scientific papers and chapters, and presented more than 120 invited lectures. He has personally supervised more than 30 clinical and research fellows since 1993. Many of these fellows have since been appointed to senior positions in the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand.

Prof. McGhee’s clinical interests are predominantly cornea, external eye diseases and anterior segment surgery. Although fundamentally interested in cataract surgery, corneal transplantation and corneal infections, he also established excimer laser units in Sunderland and Dundee, introducing LASIK to Scotland in 1996. He is the life president of the British Society of Refractive Surgery and on the editorial board of the Journal of Cataract and Refractive Surgery. Prof. McGhee’s research interests also include corneal topography and corneal refractive surgery, for which he completed his own PhD thesis.

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Tetsuro Oshika, M.D., Ph.D., elected to the AOI (Chair XXX)

Prof. Tetsuro Oshika is the Chairman and Professor of Ophthalmology, University of Tsukuba, Japan. Prof. Oshika received his medical degree and completed his ophthalmology residency at the University of Tokyo, School of Medicine. His interests in research are in ocular optics, cataract surgery, corneal disease and vision-related QOL. He has over 400 publications (in English and Japanese) to his credit and has delivered over 350 invited lectures.

Prof. Oshika holds key positions in many academic organizations, including: President of Japanese Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (JSCRS), Executive Director of Japanese Ophthalmological Society, Executive Director of Japanese Ophthalmological Optics Society, Board Member of the Japan Cornea Society, Board Member of the Japanese Ocular Inflammation Society, and Board Member of the Japanese Society of Cataract Research. He is on the Editorial Board of Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science (IOVS), and the Journal of Cataract and Refractive Surgery (JCRS).

He will be the President of the World Ophthalmology Congress to be held in Japan in 2014 and will be the President of the Japanese Ophthalmological Society at that time.
Prof. Oshika holds a central position in academic and clinical ophthalmology in Asia. In addition, his contributions in cornea and cataract surgery mark him as a gifted contributor to science.

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Tien Yin Wong, M.MED, Ph.D., elected to the AOI (Chair XXXI)

Professor Tien Y. Wong has already established himself as an international leader in ophthalmology. Having chaired the Department of Ophthalmology in Melbourne and directed its Center for Eye Research, he now directs Singapore’s Eye Research Institute and is Senior Consultant Ophthalmologist, Singapore National Eye Centre. Prof. Wong has published over 400 articles, delivered 150 invited lectures, holds seven patents, sits on five editorial boards, and is the principle or co-principle investigator on major research projects. He is also Honorary Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology, Chinese University of Hong Kong and Visiting Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Prof. Wong received his medical education at the National University of Singapore and his
ophthalmology training at the Singapore National Eye Center. He then traveled to
Baltimore to study epidemiology and ophthalmology at the Johns Hopkins School of
Public Health and the Wilmer Eye Institute.

Prof. Wong moved to Melbourne where he rose through the ranks to full Professor and Chairman of Ophthalmology. Subsequently, he was recruited back to Singapore by a concerted effort on the part of the Singapore government and Singapore’s National University. He received the highest awards for scholarly achievement and his work has been further recognized with awards from the Health Minister of Australia, the Alcon Research Institute, and the American Heart Association among others.

Prof. Wong’s primary research focus has been on the relationship between parameters of the eye’s microvasculature and the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke. He has brought a modern approach to the old aphorism that “the eye is the window to the soul.” Prof. Wong’s highly successful leadership of two major academic centers attests to his vision, enthusiasm and his leadership and management skills.

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Kanxing Zhao, M.D., Ph.D., elected to the AOI (Chair XLVI)

Prof. Kanxing Zhao is the Director and Professor of Ophthalmology at the Tianjin Eye Hospital and Institute and Vice President and Dean of the Graduate Faculty, Tianjin Medical University. He is Editor-in-Chief of the Chinese Journal of Ophthalmology and President of the Chinese Ophthalmological Society.

Prof. Zhao obtained his bachelors degree in medicine at the Tianjin Medical College and his M.D., Ph.D. at the Peking Medical University. He was a fellow under two of the most prominent strabismologists in China, Dr. Yushi He and Dr. Jiaqi Liu. He also had clinical training at Kobe University, Kobe, Japan and at Indiana University in the US.

As Director of the Tianjin Eye Hospital and Research Institute, Prof. Zhao has led an academic institution of over 400 faculty and staff, 120 of whom are ophthalmologists. The hospital has an outpatient attendance of 500,000 patients per year and is one of the largest and most modern hospitals in the region.

Prof. Zhao’s expertise is in the diagnosis and management of pediatric ophthalmology and genetic eye diseases as well as in strabismus and amblyopia. Clinically, he is best known for his expertise in complicated strabismus cases, vertical strabismus and congenital nystagmus.

Over the last two decades, Prof. Zhao’s research interests have focused on genetic eye diseases. He has studied the pathogenetic mechanisms of retinitis pigmentosa and mapped a novel locus and RP33 in Chinese families with autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa. His work was published in the American Journal of Human Genetics. Because of his research achievements, Prof. Zhao has been supported by a series of grants from the National Natural Science Foundation, the Ministry of Education and Health, and the Tianjin Natural Science Foundation. He has 220 Chinese publications and 34 publications in English.

As the Chief Physician of the Tianjin Eye Hospital and Research Institute, Prof. Zhao has made significant contributions to graduate education as evidenced by his teaching hundreds of residents, 49 students in the Master’s medical program and 48 students in the doctoral program in medicine.

President Prof. Peter Watson turns over the AOI President’s Medal to incoming President Lichter
President Prof. Peter Watson turns over the AOI President’s Medal to incoming President Lichter

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Oral Obituary for Professor Robert Machemer

Professor Stephen Ryan, a long-time colleague and close friend of Prof. Robert Machemer presented a wonderfully-crafted obituary in his memory.View the slides from the obituary presentation (powerpoint)

Oral Obituary for Professor Rudolf Sachsenweger

Prof. Gottfried Naumann provided a look at the life and career of countryman Prof. Rudolf Sachsenweger.

Oral Obituary for Prof. Sivaguru Selvarajah

President Peter Watson spoke eloquently about the life of his colleague and close friend, Prof. Sivaguru Selvarajah of Malaysia.

AOI Special Scientific Session

Inaugural Lectures were delivered by the three newly inducted Members;

The first Inaugural Lecture was presented by Prof. Petja Vassileva, entitled
"Ophthalmology in South-Eastern Europe: Traditions, Transition and Globalization."

Prof. David Parke, III delivered the second Inaugural Lecture entitled “Promises and Realities of the Web in Ophthalmic Education”

The third Inaugural Lecture was presented by Prof. Harminder Dua. His talk was entitled
"Limbal epithelial stem cells: is the paradigm shifting?”

Eight Member presentations took place during the Special Scientific Session beginning with Prof. Balder Gloor’s paper on “The “Lausanne Contribution” to ICO and AOI—Gonin, Amsler, Streiff and Cuendet.” Prof. Pran Nagpal spoke about “Spirituality and Medical Ethics--The Indian outlook.” He was followed by Prof. Rubens Belfort’s talk entitled “Systemic and Intra/Peri-Ocular Meds for Uveitis and Ocular Inflammatory related conditions.”

Member presentations continued with Prof. Jorge Alio whose talk was entitled “Visual Optics in Corneal Compensation of Presbyopia.” Prof. Marie-José Tassignon talked on “Limbal stem cell re-inforcement: a non touch technique," followed by Prof. George Theodossiadis on ''Prognostic significance of external limiting membrane in the recovery of the photoreceptor layer after successful macular hole closure.” The final member talk was entitled "Toxocara uveitis - diagnose and treatment" by Prof. Ildikó Süveges.

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Professor Peter Watson presenting AOI Memento to Professor Ivan Schwab
Professor Peter Watson presenting AOI Memento to Professor Ivan Schwab

Academia Oration by Professor Dr. Jens-Martin Rohrbach

"German Ophthalmology in the Third Reich"

The AOI was honored in having the Academia Oration delivered by Professor Dr. Jens-Martin Rohrbach who was introduced by President Watson.

View Professor Dr. Rohrbach’s Oration (pdf). The Academia is grateful to Prof. Rohrbach for providing us this material. Following his outstanding and sobering Oration, Prof. Dr. Rohrbach was presented by President Watson with a Christofle black lacquer box with engraved silver lid with handle.

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Bernardo Streiff Medal Awarded to Professor Gullapalli N. Rao

Prof. Gullapalli N. Rao
Prof. Gullapalli N. Rao

In 1997, on behalf of friends, disciples and Brigitte Streiff, Academician Jean-François Cuendet was commissioned by the Academia to create the "Bernardo Streiff Gold Medal." honoring the memory of Professor Bernardo Streiff (1908-1988), who was Head of the University Eye Clinic, Lausanne, Switzerland, and an AOI member. Professor Streiff authored 300 publications and, toward the end of his life, concentrate on history and ethics as contributions to the advance of ophthalmology. The Bernardo Streiff Gold Medal is awarded by election of the Academia every four years to an ophthalmologist who has contributed most, through history, ethics and education, to the advance of ophthalmology.

The Streiff Medal was presented at the WOC meeting in Berlin to Academician Gullapalli N. Rao. AOI President, Prof. Peter G. Watson, prepared the following background on Professor Rao’s accomplishments:

Gullapalli Rao was educated at the Guntur Medical College, India; All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi; and at the Tufts Medical School; University of Connecticut; University of Rochester, U.S.A. He is a Diplomat of the American Board, FACS, FRCS, FNAMS, D.Sc.

He is the Founder Director and Distinguished Chair of Eye Health, L V Prasad Eye Institute of the L. V. Prasad Eye Institute, Hyderabad, India which is a complex of a modern eye hospital with advanced training programs for ophthalmologists and paramedical personnel, an eye research centre, and also provides a rehabilitation program. The L. V. Prasad Eye Institute has developed high quality eye care models for underserved areas and regularly trains not only ophthalmologists but also hospital administrators and allied health personnel from developing countries.

Professor Rao is also Adjunct Professor, University of New South Wales, Australia (1993 -), Adjunct Professor of Ophthalmology, University of Rochester, USA (2002 -), formerly Associate Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology, and Director, Cornea Research Laboratory, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York and Medical Director, Rochester Eye Bank.

His main scientific interests are corneal diseases and community eye health. He authored over 240 published papers in journals all over the world, 18 chapters and one book. He sits on the editorial board of the American Journal of Ophthalmology, Cornea, The Ocular Surgery, CLAO Journal, Ophthalmic Surgery and Lasers and a number of other journals. He is the former Editor-in-Chief of the Indian Journal of Ophthalmology.

Professor Rao has been a visiting professor at several Universities in the U.S., Japan, Europe, Hong Kong, South Korea, Australia, China, South Africa, Africa, South East Asia, South America and India . He gave lectures at many international ophthalmology research and public health meetings. He was the Academic and Clinical Supervisor for 20 fellows in Cornea at the University of Rochester and over 200 past and present fellows in Hyderabad, India, from all over the world. Professor Rao had and still has a wide number of national and international responsibilities: Medical Advisory Board, Eye Bank Association of America (1983-88 & 1996-99); Castroviejo International Corneal Society (Board of Directors, 1985-89 & 2009-); Hyderabad Eye Institute (Chairman, 1986-); Indo-American Eye Care, Inc. (Chairman, 1986-94); President, Eye Bank Association of India (1995-98). From 2004 till 2004 he was the Chairman of the Board of Trustees and President of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (2004-2008). He received grants from many national and international governmental agencies and corporations and non-governmental organizations as well as several honours and awards from many international organisations including All India Ophthalmological Society (1982, 1984, 1986); Ranbaxy Research Award for excellence in Clinical Research (1995); Senior Honour Award, American Academy of Ophthalmology (1998); Member, Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis (1998-), Doctor of Science honoris causa of the University of New South Wales, Australia (2001), Padma Shri from the Government of India -2002 (Republic Day Honours given by the President of India), Fellow qua Surgeon ad eundem of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow (2003); HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Ahmed bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud for the Prevention of Blindness Award (2004), First "G. B. Bietti International Award for Prevention of Blindness" by the Italian Society for Prevention of Blindness (2005), International Blindness Prevention Award by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (2006), Pisart Vision Award by Lighthouse International (2007), Honorary Doctorate of Science from University of Melbourne, Australia (2007), AAO-Essilor Award for Outstanding International Contributions to global eye care by the American Academy of Optometry (2009).

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Academia Symposium

The Academia was invited to present a symposium during the WOC and it was entitled “Dealing with Complications of Anterior Segment Surgery.” The program was as follows:

Chair persons: Peter Watson, MD
                        Juan Verdaguer T, MD
                        Paul Lichter, MD

  • Richard Abbott, MD
    “Dealing with Infections after Lasik”

  • Jorge Alió, MD
    “Management of post-Lasik corneal ectasia”

  • Marie-José Tassignon, MD
    “Dealing with zonular dialysis during phacoemulsification”

  • Paul Lichter, MD
    “Dealing with non filtering, flat or encapsulate blebs”

  • Pran Nath Nagpal, MD
    “Dealing with early-onset endophthalmitis after cataract surgery”

  • Rubens Belfort, MD
    “Late-onset endophthalmitis after cataract surgery”

  • Kensaku Miyake, MD
    “Cystoid macular edema in early pseudophakia”

  • William Mieler, MD
    “Management of suprachoroidal hemorrhage after anterior segment surgery”

Following the AOI Symposium Prof. Juan Verdaguer introduced the AOI Lecturer, Professor Peter Watson, who presented a most interesting and engaging lecture entitled “Galileo’s Blindness.” (The slides of the Introduction can be found in the Appendix).

Following his AOI Lecture, Prof. Watson was presented with a commemorative engraved gift.

AOI Lecturer, Prof. Peter Watson speaks on “Galileo’s Blindness”
AOI Lecturer, Prof. Peter Watson speaks on “Galileo’s Blindness”
AOI Lecturer Prof. Peter Watson receiving memento from Prof. Juan Verdaguer
AOI Lecturer Prof. Peter Watson receiving memento from Prof. Juan Verdaguer

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Appendix

Appreciation of Sponsorship for ICO Fellowship

October 27th, 2010

Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis
Peter G. Watson, M.D. -- President
11 Perry Court, Clerk Maxwell Road
Cambridge CB3 ORS
United Kingdom

Dear Academia Ophthalmologica Internationalis,

I am writing to thank you for your generous $6000 ICO Fellowship Award. I was very happy and appreciate to learn that I was selected as the recipient of your scholarship.

I am an Oculoplastics surgeon from Thailand and finished Oculoplastics Fellowship training in my home country. I was seeking the opportunity to expand my knowledge from aboard to improve my carrier and also Thai Oculoplastic Society that just found only 1-2 years.

From your kind support, my ICO Fellowship program in oculoplastics was taken place at Jules-Gonin Eye Hospital, Lausanne, Switzerland, my host is Prof. Leonidas Zografos and my supervisor is Dr. Mehrad Hamedani. I have learn both clinical and surgical aspects from my kind supervisor who taught me everything. I also seen the new surgical instruments and techniques for me that I think it would be great if I can apply with the patients in my country, Thailand. Dr. Hamedani is a delicate surgeon that I have learn a lot from him. In my opinion, I think surgical method is not important as much as the plan how to manage patients and I have opportunities to discuss with him that I think this is the most particularly good to talk with an expertise who have good results.

Thank you again for your support. Your generosity has inspired me to help others and give back to the community.

Sincerely,

Pattama Wongwatthanadej

42/1 Soi Jasod, Old Railway Road
Bangna, Bangkok 10260
Thailand