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Retinal Restoration Laboratory

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Investigator / Contact Person Abigail Hackam, Ph.D.


The research in the Retinal Restoration Laboratory focuses on understanding cellular signaling pathways that contribute to retinal degenerations and retinal ganglion cell loss after optic nerve damage. Our overall goal is to generate new insights into the molecules and specific neuronal-glial interactions that contribute to the progression of these ocular diseases. We are defining key regulatory signals that restore tissue homeostasis, which will be applied to developing new treatments for rescuing vision in these diseases. 

Current Research

Current research topics in the Retinal Restoration Laboratory include investigating the role of innate immunity in retinal degenerations, characterizing protective effects of the Wnt signaling pathway in optic nerve regeneration and photoreceptor diseases, and determining the effect of specific dietary interventions on rescuing vision in ocular disease. 

  • The role of innate immunity in retinal degeneration

  • Identification of optic nerve regeneration factors

  • High throughput drug discovery for identifying neuroprotective factors

  • Investigating the contribution of diet and environmental factors to ocular disease

  • Identification of photoreceptor protective proteins: the role of the Wnt signaling pathways in retinal degeneration.