Yannek Leiderman, MD, PhD

    Email Address: yannek@uic.edu
    College: Medicine Department: Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences
    Secondary Department: Chemical Engineering
    Title: Assistant Professor, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences
    Office: 312-413-8000
    Webpage: http://www.uic.edu/com/eye/Department/FullTimeFaculty/Leiderman_Yannek.shtml
    Participating in the Chancellor’s Undergraduate Research Awards program: Yes

    Research Interest:
    I serve as a clinician and surgeon on the Retina Service, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, at the University of Illinois at Chicago. As the Director of the Vitreoretinal Microsurgery Laboratory here at UIC, I coordinate a team of clinicians and researchers in the investigation of disorders of the retina and vitreous, the structures within the eye that mediate light transduction and visual perception.

    My laboratory is focused on Proliferative Vitreoretinopathy (PVR), a cicatricial ('scar tissue') process affecting the retina, especially common after eye injury affecting the internal and posterior structures of the eye, as well as a subset of retinal detachment. We study the causes and molecular mechanisms of PVR, with the ultimate goal of translational success - applying findings about how a disease process occurs to the design of a preventative strategy or treatment.

    We utilize various methods of laboratory and clinical science, including biomedical bench science with cells and tissues, animal modeling, microsurgical technique, analysis of human tissue samples, and chemical engineering.

    At present there are opportunities in several areas within our group. 1) Participation in laboratory investigation of PVR. 2) Investigation of novel vitreous substitutes (the vitreous is the clear, gel-like tissues that fills the eye. It is often removed during surgery, and replacement offers an opportunity for drug-delivery). 3) Information technology. Design and implementation of web-based instruments for the collection of clinical data, as well as the design of a laboratory web page.

    Participation in our laboratory research program will be particularly useful for students planning a career in biomedical research, medicine, bio- and chemical engineering, or health information technology.

    Minimum time commitment in hours per week: None

    Qualifications of a Student:
    Minimum qualifications will be determined by the student's goals and interests. See above for potential project areas.
    1) Laboratory Investigation - Strong academic preparation including major in the chemical/physical/biological sciences. Some experience in relevant laboratory techniques preferred.
    2) Drug Delivery / Novel Vitreous Substitutes - Preferred major in chemical engineering or bioengineering.
    3) Information Technology - Experience in web page design, and the design and implementation of web-based survey-type instruments for the collection of data.

    Brief Summary of what is expected from the student:
    Expectations will be determined based upon the scope of the project and student's goals. We seek motivated, focused, goal-oriented students able to thrive in an environment of mentoring and self-directed learning.

    Contact researcher via URE Email Webform

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