Oxidative stress (OS) is an underlying pathology in retinal neurodegenerative diseases such as age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma (Dreyer EB. J. Glaucoma. 7(1):62-67
). These ocular retinopathies account for a large number of cases of blindness and visual impairment among the elderly in the US, warranting research into potential therapeutic options to prevent visual impairment (Vision Problems in the U.S. Prevalence of Adult Vision Impairment and Age-Related Eye Disease in America. Prevent Blindness America. http://www.visionproblemsus.org/introduction.html)
. My research focus is directed towards identifying the underlying mechanisms by which OS interacts with pharmacological receptors in ocular tissues, with the aim of revealing potential pharmacological targets that can be manipulated for therapeutic interventions. My specific areas of interests include studies on the regulation of uveal sympathetic and retinal excitatory neurotransmission by OS and OS-metabolites of long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). Other areas of study include the regulation of retinal ganglion cells and neural tissue survival by OS-PUFA metabolites; regulation of neurotransmitter release, intraocular pressure and aqueous humor dynamics by hydrogen sulfide donors; development of innovative, slow release hydrogen sulfide donor formulations that can achieve sustainable concentrations in the anterior and posterior segments of the eye for management of glaucoma and other retinopathies; identification and characterization of subtypes of prejunctional (autoreceptors and heteroreceptors) receptors in the mammalian anterior uvea and retina. Receptors of interest include those for glutamate, histamine, prostanoids and cannabinoids.