Annual Congress 2017
22 - 25 May, Liverpool

Eponymous Lectures
The Duke Elder Lecture
The Duke Elder Lecture will be delivered by Professor Keith Martin, Professor of Ophthalmology, University of Cambridge.
The title of Professor Martin’s lecture will be confirmed nearer the time.

Keith Martin was elected as the first Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Cambridge in 2010. He is Head of Ophthalmology at the University of Cambridge, Deputy Director of the University’s John van Geest Centre for Brain Repair and an Affiliate Principal Investigator at the Wellcome Trust - MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute. He is also Academic Lead for Ophthalmology and Lead Clinician for Glaucoma at the Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. He graduated from the University of Cambridge with a 'Triple First' in Medical Sciences and Neuroscience before completing clinical Training at Oxford University Clinical School, Ophthalmology Residency in Cambridge and Clinical and Research Fellowships in Glaucoma at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London and the Wilmer Eye Institute in Baltimore.

Professor Martin established and runs the Glaucoma Research Laboratory at the University of Cambridge, working to develop new treatments for eye disease using stem cells, gene therapy and other techniques. In 2010, Professor Martin won the ARVO Foundation for Eye Research Translational Research Award, an international prize to a researcher from any country under the age of 50 years whose research is judged to have the potential to lead to major breakthroughs in the treatment of eye disease. He was also a winner of the World Glaucoma Association Senior Clinician Scientist Award in 2011.

Clinically, Professor Martin specialises in the medical and surgical management of complex glaucoma in adults and children. He is Basic Science Section Co-Editor of the Journal of Glaucoma and Vice-President and President Elect of the World Glaucoma Association.

The Edridge Green Lecture
The Edridge Green Lecture will be delivered by Professor Anya Hurlbert, Professor of Visual Neuroscience, Newcastle University.
The title of Professor Hurlbert’s will be confirmed nearer the time.

Anya Hurlbert is Professor of Visual Neuroscience, Director of the Centre for Translational Systems Neuroscience and Dean of Advancement at Newcastle University. She trained as a physicist (BA 1980, Physics, Princeton University), physiologist (MA 1982, Cambridge University), neuroscientist (PhD 1989, Brain and Cognitive Sciences, MIT), and physician (MD 1990, Harvard Medical School). Her main research interest is in understanding the human brain, through understanding the human visual system. She focusses on colour vision and its role in everyday visual and cognitive tasks, in normal development and ageing as well as in developmental disorders such as autism. She has particular research interests in individual variations of neural mechanisms that underlie colour constancy, colour naming, and other behavioural uses of colour.

She is also interested in applied areas such as digital imaging and novel lighting technologies, and how the latter may be used to optimise human appreciation of artworks, as well as mood and performance. In 2004, she co-founded the Institute of Neuroscience at Newcastle, one of the UK's foremost academic units focussed on neurosciences, uniting clinicians and basic scientists, and was Institute Director until 2014. Professor Hurlbert is active in the public understanding of science, and has devised and co-curated several science-based art exhibitions, most recently an interactive installation (a film, lighting demonstration and mass public experiment) at the National Gallery, London, for its 2014 summer exhibition. She lectures widely on colour perception and art, and contributes to media programmes on visual perception. She is past Chairman of the Colour Group (GB) and currently Scientist Trustee of the National Gallery.

The Keeler Lecture
The Keeler Lecture will be delivered by Professor Ivan Schwab, Professor of Ophthalmology, University of California Davis School of Medicine, USA.
The title of Professor Schwab’s lecture will be ‘The Evolution of Eyes’. A short synopsis of the lecture is below;

‘With light and predation as catalysts, the first known eye appeared during the Cambrian, approximately 550 million years ago. The complexity of this trilobite eye, though, suggests that visual development began well before, in the Precambrian. The Cambrian explosion was the "big bang" of evolution and spawned nearly all morphologic forms of the eye. This crucible of evolution was followed by a descent through unimaginable variety and creativity, with at least 10 different optical designs, including the compound, camera style, and simple eye with mirror, scanning, or telephoto optics. Vision was among the principal determinants of evolution and its direction. Some of these ocular designs are merely curiosities, but others offer the finest visual potential packed into a small space, limited only by the laws of diffraction or physiological optics. We should be so lucky. Objective To stimulate curiosity about the novelties and the triumphs of the evolution of the eye.’

Professor Ivan Schwab graduated summa cum laude from West Virginia University (WVU) in 1969 with a bachelor's degree from Eberly College of Arts and Sciences and received a medical degree from WVU in 1973. Completing his residency at Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco and following two fellowships in Ophthalmology, Dr. Schwab returned to WVU as a faculty member in the School of Medicine for seven years beginning in 1982. In 1989, he moved to the University of California, Davis, and has been on its faculty since then as a Professor of Ophthalmology. He has been active with the American Academy of Ophthalmology as well as several professional societies, and has served as a Board Director on the American Board of Ophthalmology.

He is an associate editor for both the AAO’s journal OPHTHALMOLOGY, and for the subspecialty journal CORNEA. He has an active practice in cornea, external disease and uveitis. His principal research work has been directed toward ocular surface diseases, and he was the first person in the United States to transplant bioengineered tissue to the ocular surface in 1999. Between 2000 and 2007, he wrote a monthly essay series on comparative ophthalmology as the cover editor for the British Journal of Ophthalmology. In 2006, he won an IgNobel for his work on why woodpeckers don’t get headaches. With that interest in comparative optics and physiology, Professor Schwab has published a book (Oxford University Press) entitled “Evolution’s Witness: How Eyes Evolved.”

The Optic UK Lecture
The Optic UK Lecture will be delivered by Professor Kay Dickersin, Professor of Epidemiology, John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA.
The title of Professor Dickersin’s lecture will be confirmed nearer the time.

Kay received her master’s degree in zoology (specializing in cell biology) from the University of California, Berkeley in 1975, and her PhD in epidemiology from Johns Hopkins University, School of Hygiene and Public Health, in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1989. She is Professor of Epidemiology and Director of the Center for Clinical Trials and Evidence Synthesis at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Kay’s major research contributions are methodological and related to clinical trials, systematic reviews, publication bias, trials registers, and evidence-based healthcare. Kay is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine and received the 2014 Ingram Olkin Award from the Society for Research Synthesis Methods for lifetime contributions to the field.

Kay has directed or participated in the data coordinating center for a number of multicenter randomized clinical trials, including the Ischemic Optic Neuropathy Decompression Trial (IONDT), funded by the National Eye Institute. Kay has also served on multiple clinical trials data and safety monitoring boards, as co-chair of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Scientific Advisory Group to the International Clinical Trials Registry Platform, and as President of the Society for Clinical Trials (2008-9). Kay is also Director of the Cochrane Eyes and Vision Review Group US Satellite (CEVG@US), an effort supported by the National Eye Institute (NEI) since 2002. As part of that group, she has co-authored an important systematic review of the safety of bevacizumab versus ranibizumab for neovascular age-related macular degeneration, and has contributed to other systematic reviews in the field of eyes and vision.

Over the course of her career, Kay has led and advised on multiple systematic reviews, and has overseen numerous educational activities related to evidence-based healthcare and systematic reviews. For example, with the NEI’s support, CEVG@US has launched an online course for peer reviewers, emphasizing eyes and vision examples (see Kay is also the Director of the US Cochrane Center (USCC). In 2003, she founded Consumers United for Evidence-based Healthcare (CUE), a partnership with health and consumer advocacy organizations. Kay has served on various IOM and National Research Council committees relevant to public health, including the IOM’s Committee on Standards for Systematic Reviews of Clinical Effectiveness Research. She has also served on the American Academy of Ophthalmology’s Ophthalmic Technology Assessment Committee (2004 – 2008), and the Task Force on Community Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2004 - 2008).