Jonathan R. Soucy, PhD, a postdoctoral research fellow at Schepens Eye Research Institute of Mass Eye and Ear, is a recipient of the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award. This three-year grant from the National Eye Institute will provide $209,046 in funding for his project, “Regulating cell-cell interactions to improve donor retinal ganglion cell integration.”Progressive retinal neuron death leads to irreversible vision loss in glaucoma and other optic neuropathies. The mammalian retina does not regenerate on its own and cell transplantation has been proposed to restore the retinal neurocircuitry; however, successful vision rescue requires donor retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) to integrate into the host retina and connect with existing retinal neurons. Dr. Soucy aims to investigate the role that Down Syndrome Cell Adhesion Molecule (DSCAM) has in directing stem cell-derived donor RGCs migration to their natural connecting points in the retina.
March 3, 2022