Noted Glaucoma Specialist to Speak at April 20 AEVR Briefing on Glaucoma Detection and Treatment

March 28, 2005
CONTACT: James F. Jorkasky
Executive Director
[email protected]

Noted Glaucoma Specialist to Speak at April 20 AEVR Briefing on
Glaucoma Detection and Treatment

(Washington, DC) Today, the Alliance for Eye and Vision Research
(AEVR) announced that Christopher Girkin, MD, MSPH, of the University
of Alabama at Birmingham, will speak about glaucoma detection and
treatment at a Capitol Hill luncheon briefing to be held on Wednesday,
April 20, 2005, from 12 Noon -1:15 pm in Dirksen Senate Office Building
Room 226. The briefing, entitled Glaucoma
Detection and Treatment: African Americans with Glaucoma Study
is the second in an AEVR-sponsored series devoted to educating Congress
about vision health disparities research being conducted by the
National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institute of
Health (NIH).

Dr. Girkin, an investigator in the NEI-sponsored African Americans
with Glaucoma Study
, will discuss how the study builds on previous
research on racial differences in the optic nerve and cornea by
developing detection techniques that are more sensitive to these
physiological differences and potential changes over time. Earlier
detection results in earlier diagnosis and treatment, often with
pressure reducing drops that can delay or prevent the onset of the
disease, as shown in the NEI-sponsored Ocular Hypertension Treatment

Cassandra Page, UAB’s Administrative Coordinator, will describe
efforts to reach out to the African American churches in Birmingham
to engage study participants, as well as the impact of the study
results on the community. AEVR President Stephen Ryan, MD, will
host the briefing.

In announcing the event, AEVR Executive Director James Jorkasky
stated, “AEVR is proud to present another example of the important
vision health disparity research that NEI sponsors, following up
on last September’s Los Angeles Latino Eye Study (LALES)
briefing. I am especially pleased that Ms. Page will join Dr. Girkin
to describe the involvement of and impact on the Birmingham community
of this important federally funded research.”

Dr. Girkin is an Associate Professor and Director, Glaucoma Service,
in the Department of Ophthalmology at the Callahan Eye Foundation
Hospital at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He is the recipient
of the Research to Prevent Blindness (RPB) Clinician-Scientist Award
for 2005. Dr. Stephen Ryan is President of the Doheny Eye Institute
at the University of Southern California.

The National Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (NAEVR) is a
non-profit advocacy coalition comprised of 44 professional, consumer,
and industry organizations involved in eye and vision research.
NAEVR’s goal is to achieve the best vision for all Americans through
advocacy and public education for eye and vision research sponsored
by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Eye Institute
(NEI), and other federal research entities. Visit NAEVR’s Web site