Grant supports continued ophthalmology research

Dr. James McCulley
Dr. James P. McCulley

A $110,000 grant recently awarded to the Department of Ophthalmology by Research to Prevent Blindness has raised RPB’s support for UT Southwestern Medical Center to more than $4 million to date.

“RPB unrestricted departmental grants are provided to fewer than half the departments of Ophthalmology in the country,” said Dr. James P. McCulley, Chairman of Ophthalmology and Director of the Jean H. and John T. Walter Jr. Center for Research in Age-Related Macular Degeneration, who will direct the research.

The latest award marks the 29th consecutive year that UT Southwestern has received an unrestricted grant from RPB. The latest grant will be used to study the causes of debilitating and blinding eye diseases, as well as to investigate treatments. RPB funding has helped UT Southwestern researchers make key findings in a number of ophthalmic studies to date, including:

  • Identifying a gene that makes patients more likely to develop age-related macular degeneration.
  • Understanding why patients with eye allergies have a significantly higher risk for rejecting corneal transplants.
  • Identifying a critical protein present in the eye disease retinopathy of prematurity that affects the retina.    
  • Developing an eye-staining technique to identify dry eye syndrome.


Dr. McCulley holds the David Bruton Jr. Chair in Ophthalmology.