STANFORD, CA (December 2, 2013) – Mark S. Blumenkranz, M.D.,
H.J. Smead Professor and Chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology
at Stanford University School of Medicine, delivered the prestigious
Jackson Memorial Lecture on November 17th during the opening session
of the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology in
New Orleans. Blumenkranz, who is also Director of the Byers Eye
Institute at Stanford, titled his talk, "The History and
Evolution of Lasers in Ophthalmology: A Review of the Interactions
Between Physicians, Patients and Photons." The lecture will be
published in a forthcoming issue of the American Journal of Ophthalmology.
The Jackson Memorial Lecture, which celebrated its 70th anniversary
this year, is considered the premier lectureship in ophthalmology. In
his comments, Blumenkranz discussed the progression of lasers in
ophthalmology from their early development in the 1960s and 1970s,
including contributions by Stanford University faculty, to more recent
contributions in the area of retinal and cataract applications.
"Dr. Blumenkranz's innovations in ophthalmology have resulted
in new treatments that improve the lives of patients at Stanford and
around the world," said Amir Dan Rubin, president and chief
executive officer, Stanford Hospital & Clinics. "He has also
been a leader in delivering leading edge and coordinated care that is
highly patient-centered. We are extremely pleased to see Dr.
Blumenkranz receive this well-deserved recognition from his peers at
the American Academy of Ophthalmology."
Blumenkranz was an early innovator in vitrectomy techniques to treat
complex forms of retinal detachment, and helped to usher in the modern
era of intravitreal and surgical adjuvant drug therapy with laboratory
and clinical studies identifying 5- fluorouracil and low molecular
weight heparin as potent agents to inhibit ocular scarring. These
studies led to subsequent trials for these agents in glaucoma and
proliferative vitreoretinopathy. He was a member of the groups that
first reported the herpetic etiology and successful acyclovir
treatment of acute retinal necrosis, the use of bio-erodable polymers
to deliver intraocular steroids for macular edema and published the
first human safety study of ranibizumab (Lucentis). He introduced the
technique of patterned automated laser scanning of the retina for
diabetic retinopathy which has been used on more than one half million
patients world wide since its introduction in 1995 and was an
outgrowth of his laboratory collaboration with Daniel Palanker also of
Stanford, and was an inventor along with Dr. Palanker in the technique
of femtosecond laser assisted cataract surgery.
A leading expert in disorders of the retina and macula including age
related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and retinal
detachments, Blumenkranz has published more than 145 papers in
peer-reviewed journals and multiple book chapters, abstracts and
patents in the field. He is a past president of the American
University Professors of Ophthalmology, the Retina Society and the
Macula Society, and serves as a Fellow of the Corporation of Brown
University where he chairs the Medical School Committee. He has served
on the editorial boards of the American Journal of Ophthalmology,
Retina, Ophthalmology and Graefe's Archives forphthalmology and
received multiple awards for his work including the Heed Award, The
Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Academy of Ophthalmology,
and the Pyron Award amongst others.
Prior to joining Stanford, Blumenkranz was the founding director of
the vitreoretinal fellowship program at William Beaumont Hospital and
worked for Associated Retinal Consultants in Royal Oak, Michigan. He
received his undergraduate, graduate and medical education at Brown
University, residency training at Stanford University, and
participated in a fellowship in vitreoretinal diseases at the Bascom
Palmer Eye Institute, where he also served on the faculty for five years.
The Jackson Memorial Lecture honors the legacy of Edward Jackson,
M.D. (1856 to 1942). Jackson was dedicated to the education and
training of ophthalmologists and had a tremendous impact on the
specialty—from popularizing retinoscopy to helping found both the
American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Journal of Ophthalmology.