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Research News

Penn Vet to Host Translational Retinal Research & Therapies Symposium

By John Donges Published: Oct 20, 2017

At right, Dr. Gustavo Aguirre receives the Proctor Medal from ARVO Board Trustee Steven J. FlieslerSymposium held in honor of Dr. Gustavo Aguirre, 2017 Proctor Medal recipient


[October 20, 2017; Philadelphia, PA] – The Translational Retinal Research & Therapies Symposium brings together a group of internationally recognized scientists and clinician scientists from the veterinary and human medical fields. They will present the latest research in areas of retinal disease gene discovery, disease mechanisms, viral vector development and applications, translational studies in animal models, and clinical applications.

The symposium is held in honor of Gustavo Aguirre, VMD, PhD, who received the 2017 Proctor Medal from the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology. Aguirre is Professor of Medical Genetics and Ophthalmology at Penn Vet’s Ryan Hospital. He received the award for his development of unique canine models of retinal degeneration, which provides basic information about their counterpart human diseases. This preclinical work has established safety and efficacy for most of the clinical trial work in progress on neurotrophic factors as well as gene therapy.

The half-day symposium will take place on Thursday, November 16, 2017, from 1-6:00pm at Penn Vet’s Hill Pavilion (380 S. University Ave., Philadelphia). Register for the symposium here. A cocktail reception will follow.

Speakers include:

  • Gustavo Aguirre, VMD, PhD, Professor of Medical Genetics and Ophthalmology, Penn Vet
  • William Beltran, DVM, PhD, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Penn Vet
  • John Flannery, PhD, Professor of Optometry and Vision Science, University of California - Berkeley
  • Alison Hardcastle, PhD, Professor of Molecular Genetics, University College of London
  • Samuel G. Jacobson, MD, PhD, Professor of Ophthalmology, Scheie Eye Institute of the University of Pennsylvania
  • José-Alain Sahel, MD, PhD, Chair, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

This event is part of the University of Pennsylvania’s ongoing efforts in support of the One Health Initiative, which is dedicated to improving the lives of all species through the integration of human medicine, veterinary medicine, and environmental science.