BCM Family
for Faculty, Staff and Trainees
Volume 7, Issue 7
July 2010

Research to Prevent Blindness award to support new ophthalmology faculty member

The department of ophthalmology at BCM has been granted a $200,000 Research to Prevent Blindness Career Development Award to support eye research to be conducted by Dr. Benjamin J. Frankfort.

The support is provided over a four-year period. Frankfort is currently a clinical fellow in glaucoma and will join the full-time faculty as instructor of ophthalmology in August 2010. He is a graduate of the BCM Medical Scientist Training Program.

Preventing glaucoma

The Research to Prevent Blindness Career Development Award was established in 1990 to attract young physicians and basic scientists to eye research. The award will enable Frankfort to further his research on the pathogenesis, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of glaucoma, one of the world's leading causes of blindness. He will also participate in clinical practice in the medical and surgical management of glaucoma at the new Alkek Eye Center in the Medical Building.

Supporting eye research

Research to Prevent Blindness is the world's leading voluntary organization supporting eye research and has contributed hundreds of millions of dollars to medical institutions for research into causes, treatment and prevention of blinding eye diseases. To date, the program has recruited 150 vision scientists to research positions in departments of ophthalmology at medical schools throughout the country.

Since Research to Prevent Blindness' inception in 1960, the BCM department of ophthalmology has received about $3.7 million in funding to support research programs, ranking it 16th among 53 recipient departments of ophthalmology in the country.