Casey Eye Institute researchers develop technology to address blindness

Yali Jia, Ph.D.

Researchers at OHSU’s Casey Eye Institute have developed a technology – optical coherence tomography (OCT) angiography – to better diagnose and manage the leading causes of blindness in the U.S. – retinal vascular diseases such as macular degeneration, diabetic eye disease, and glaucoma. According to research published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, OCT provides a more precise and less invasive alternative to conventional dye-based retinal angiography used for screening and monitoring.

OCT angiography has been in development for years at various research centers around the world but Yali Jia Ph.D., study investigator and assistant professor of Ophthalmology, and David Huang, M.D., Ph.D., study investigator and Peterson Professor of Ophthalmology, both with the Casey Eye Institute, made a decisive breakthrough by developing an algorithm that improved the quality of this technique.

OCT angiography used in the study does not require injections and allows clinicians to measure various aspects of vascular function in a quantitative manner. Because it is non-invasive and provides three-dimensional images, OCT angiography is expected to be used more frequently in the future than two-dimensional dye-based angiography, the current standard.

David Huang, M.D., Ph.D.

The paper, “Quantitative optical coherence tomography angiography of vascular abnormalities in the living human eye,” was authored by a team of researchers at OHSU’s Casey Eye Institute as well as researchers from other institutions. A full listing can be found here.

 The story was covered in many news outlets, including the Portland Business Journal.

NIH S10 applications deadline extended to Apr. 29!

The deadline for internal proposals has been extended to April 29 to encourage OHSU faculty to submit your applications for the 2015 Shared Instrument Grant Program (S10). Don’t pass up the opportunity to acquire valuable resources for your lab!

This program provides groups of NIH-supported investigators funds to purchase or upgrade a single item of specialized, commercially available instrumentation or an integrated instrumentation system. The cost of instrumentation must be at least $50,000 (note that this figure is different from past years, where the lower limit was $100,000) and no more than $600,000. Types of instruments supported include confocal and electron microscopes, biomedical imagers, mass spectrometers, DNA sequencers, biosensors, cell-sorters, X-ray diffraction systems, and NMR spectrometers, among others.

OHSU is not limited in the number of applications we may submit, provided that the applications are for different types of equipment; however, internal coordination is required. A minimum of three major users who are PIs on active NIH research grants must be identified.

NOTE – INTERNAL PROPOSALS REQUIRED: To apply, you must submit a brief 1-3 page preliminary proposal to Dr. Sue Aicher, who is coordinating the review process, by Friday, April 3, 2015. The external application is due May 29, 2015.   Your email should include the following:

1. What instrument will be requested, and why it is needed
2. Cost of the instrument, including vendor quote
3. Cost of maintenance contract
4. Where the instrument will be located
5. Major user group info (group of at least 3 scientists with qualifying federal funding at time of the award)
6. Institutional support

Proposals will be evaluated based on whether the instrument will enhance the proposal research, whether there is a good match between the proposal science and the requested instrument, the justification of need, the organization of the project, continuing commitment to the instrument, and the benefit to the overall research community.


Upcoming deadlines for two funding opportunities

Attention Post-docs! Supported by a five-year grant from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), the University of Washington in Seattle, WA and the National College of Natural Medicine in Portland, OR are excited to announce the Building Research across Inter-Disciplinary Gaps (BRIDG) T90/R90 Clinical Research Training Program in Complementary and Integrative Health.

The BRIDG program is a two to three year immersive clinical research training program for both doctoral-level health care providers in the disciplines of CIH (e.g., N.D., D.C., and D.A.O.M.) and conventionally trained researchers from biomedical and public health disciplines (e.g., Ph.D., M.D., Dr.P.H., D.S.W., etc.). Deadline is Friday,  May 1, 2015. Click here for more information.

 Junior and mid-career faculty: A new round of applications for IMHRO’s Rising Star Research Awards has been announced. One Mind Institute (IMHRO), in collaboration with Janssen Research & Development (JRD), is offering up to two major awards for research related to psychiatric illness. One grant will be awarded for research toward novel therapies for psychiatric illness with the objective to advance the translation of scientific knowledge of underlying disease mechanisms in bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and major depression toward benefits to patients and the healthcare system. A second grant will be awarded for research in humans focused specifically on anxiety or depression in children and adolescents. Each award will be for $250,000 total for up to three consecutive years. Candidates should be no longer than 10 years from their initial independent appointment. Application deadline is May 26, 2015. Click here for more information.

Please note: though this is not a limited submission , candidates must be nominated by the Dean, Department Chair, or Head of their Scientific Program.

Tartar Trust Fellowships; applications due May 22

Applications for Tartar Trust Fellowships, which provide up to $2,000 to students, postdocs, and faculty in the OHSU School of Medicine, are due May 22, 2015. Projects that are likely to enhance the applicant’s career development are of particular interest.

Fellowship funds may be used to:

  • Assist qualified graduate students in their research programs.
  • Provide released time for a graduate teaching assistant for purposes of advancing the individual’s degree research.
  • Support specially endowed medical students to engage in research during the summer or a term of the academic year.
  • Extend appointments of qualified postdoctoral investigators.
  • Provide released time or summary salary for a faculty member.
  • Provide young members with a brief period of special research training as guests at other institutions.
  • Provide support for an individual to perform research on an urgent short-term problem relating to human diseases.

View the guidelines and application.

Joseph D. Matarazzo lecture series continues May 11

Please join the Department of Behavioral Neuroscience for the 2015 Matarazzo Lecture and reception featuring guest speaker, Marina E. Wolf, Ph.D., professor and chair with the Department of Neuroscience at the Chicago Medical School, Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science. This year’s lecture is titled Synaptic mechanisms maintaining persistent cocaine craving.

Monday, May 11, 2015
1 to 2 p.m. – lecture
2 to 3 p.m. – reception
OHSU Auditorium

An RSVP is appreciated

Wolf’s lab was one of the first to study the role of neuronal plasticity in addiction. Her recent research has focused on how alterations in various neurological processes contribute to addiction related plasticity. Her work in this field has been supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) since 1992.

Established in 2004, the Joseph D. Matarazzo lecture series honors Department Founder and Emeritus Professor, Joseph D. Matarazzo, Ph.D.

You’re invited to Research Week 2015

We’re sharing the following message from Dan Dorsa, Ph.D., senior vice president for research:

Dear colleagues,

I would like to invite you to join me in celebrating OHSU Research Week, May 4-8, 2015, our annual celebration of research at Oregon Health & Science University. More than 200 OHSU researchers will be presenting their latest findings over the four days. I encourage you to show your support by attending talks and poster sessions – many of the presenters are trainees, the future of the biomedical research workforce.

In addition to OHSU presenters, we have an exceptional lineup of visiting experts, including Charles Rafferty, Ph.D., a recently retired review branch chief at the National Institutes of Health. On Thursday, May 7, at 12 p.m. in the Old Library Auditorium, Dr. Rafferty will lead a simulated study section meeting to review two actual NIH grant applications, offering an inside look at the NIH grant review process.

Specific highlights from the Research Week program include:

  • New faculty lightning rounds showcasing the work of faculty members who joined OHSU in 2013 or later
  • Posters and oral presentations on a range of topics, from neuroscience to nursing, beginning Monday at 2 p.m. and continuing through Thursday afternoon
  • Keynote addresses by Chuan He, Ph.D., and Moritz Helmstaedter, Ph.D.
  • A career networking night for students and postdoctoral fellows
  • OHSU’s 3rd annual Three Minute Thesis Competition

The full schedule can be found here.

The work of our research scientists, students, postdocs, and staff is the foundation underlying OHSU’s success as an academic health center. I hope you will help me celebrate their achievements by attending Research Week events.


Dan Dorsa, Ph.D.
Senior Vice President for Research, OHSU

IRB Brown Bag Special Series: eIRB Mods & CRQs

IRB Brown BageIRB Upgrade: Modifications & Continuing Review Questionnaires

Presented by IRB Manager Dave Holmgren

Tuesday, May 12
2 to 3:30 p.m.
OHSU Hospital, 8th floor auditorium

This brown bag will provide an overview and demonstration of the modification and continuing review submission processes in the new eIRB system. You will see the new modification and continuing review questionnaires and learn how the new system improves upon the current process.

IRB Brown Bag Special Series: eIRB Initial Submissions

IRB Brown BageIRB Upgrade: Initial Submissions

Presented by IRB Manager Dave Holmgren

Monday, May 4
1 to 2:30 p.m.
OHSU Hospital, 8th floor auditorium

This brown bag will provide an overview and demonstration of the new eIRB Upgrade Initial Submissions Process. You will learn how the new system improves upon the current submission process and you will see where we have incorporated many suggestions provided from the user testers who helped us design the Initial Submission Smart Form questions. Following the presentation, we will have a Q&A session.

NIH launches new and updated web resources

This week, the NIH unveiled two valuable resources for the biomedical research community:

The new Biomedical Data Science website was launched on Apr. 13 as part of the NIH’s push to harness the potential of  computational data to advance biomedical research. The new site features information on the following NIH-wide efforts:

  • Data Science Community: Read about the Community’s mission, recent news and events, community engagement, training, and the NIH Data Science Workforce Development Center. Here you can also access the Input | Output blog, a Community news and discussion forum that covers topics as wide ranging as the use of Cloud services for storing and analyzing protected data to updates on Community events.
  • The Commons: Learn about this shared computing environment intended to improve access and use of shared digital research data.
  • BD2K: The Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) initiative was launched in 2012 to support new approaches to improving access to Big Data. The new BD2K site provides links to FOAs as well as information on BD2K working groups and news related to the initiative.
In related news, the NIH peer review website, Guidance for Reviewers, just got a new look as well as enhanced functionality and content. The site update is designed to help both reviewers and applicants better understand the peer review process and requirements by providing step-by-step instructions and reviewer do’s and don’ts.



INVENT talk: From inventor to innovator in 5 (painful) steps, Apr. 22

Join INVENT at OHSU’s South Waterfront Campus for a presentation from Kenton Gregory, M.D., director of the OHSU Center for Regenerative Medicine. An internationally accomplished physician-bioengineer, Gregory will discuss how to “transform an inventor into an innovator in five (painful) steps.” Gregory holds more than 20 domestic and international patents, has served as Principal Investigator on five FDA-sponsored clinical trials, and has received more than $50 million in grants. Among his many accomplishments, Gregory has launched seven spin-off companies since 1991 – three headquartered in Oregon.

Wednesday, Apr. 22
5:30 to 7 p.m.
OHSU Collaborative Life Sciences Building, Room 3A001

Attendance is free, and food and networking will follow the lecture. Please visit the Biomedical Innovation Program for details and registration information.

This educational series is truly a collaborative event and is brought to you, in part, by the Oregon Clinical & Translational Research Institute, the School of Medicine, Knight Cardiovascular Institute, the Division of Management and Technology Transfer & Business Development.

Welcome to the Research News Blog

Welcome to the Research News Blog

OHSU Research News is your portal to information about all things research at Oregon Health & Science University. Visit often for updates on events, discoveries, and important funding information.

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