A leader in ophthalmology
As the only research centre affiliated with the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé (FRQS) to have positioned ophthalmology as one of its research axes, the CR-HMR’s leadership in this field has increased its reputation in both the clinical and scientific communities.
4 major themes
Since 2016, vision health research has been organized around the following themes:
- neurodegenerative diseases of the retina, and mainly macular degeneration and glaucoma
- vascular diseases of the retina that lead to retinopathy of prematurity and diabetic retinopathy
- corneal transplantation diseases: to improve surgical techniques and foster the use of biomaterials
- public health epidemiology and access to eye care: prevalence, impacts, and intervention strategies
These themes include researchers and clinicians who have a wide range of complementary and cutting-edge expertise. For example, great emphasis is placed on developing biomaterials for corneal transplantation and other therapies for eye diseases. Our researchers are also taking advantage of advances in biophotonics, a science that combines biology and photonics to analyze biological objects and better understand their changes through the use of light-based technologies.
Centre universitaire d’ophtalmologie (CUO) de l’Université de Montréal
The designation in 2016 of the Department of Ophthalmology at Hôpital Maisonneuve-Rosemont as the Centre universitaire d'ophtalmologie (CUO) at Université de Montréal has also contributed to the vision health research axis.
This designation has opened a door to a new era of collaboration that has translated into increased synergy in the care, teaching and research of all Université de Montréal ophthalmology professors.
Immunology and cellular therapy
Immunology and cellular therapy also play an important role, as researchers in this area perform the directed differentiation of stem cells into retinal neurons and trabecular cells. Researchers are also investigating the pathophysiological mechanisms of oxidative, axonal, biomechanical or vascular damage to retinal ganglion cells and the development of neuroprotective agents.
These different avenues are putting forward new mechanistic models for retinal, corneal and glaucoma pathologies, with the goal of transferring these models to the clinic to better prevent and treat eye and vision diseases.