14:30-15:00 – Keynote lecture
Retinal Ganglion Cells and the optic nerve – anatomy and physiology explain mitochondrial vulnerability
Alfredo A. Sadun, M.D., PhD. holds the Flora L. Thornton Endowed Chair and is Chief at Doheny and Vice-Chair of Ophthalmology at UCLA. Dr. Sadun graduated from MIT (1972). He received his Ph.D. and M.D. at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in 1976 and 1978. He completed a residency in Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School and, after a fellowship in Neuro-Ophthalmology, joined the full-time faculty at Harvard, Department of Ophthalmology in 1983. In 2014, he helped lead Doheny in its transition to UCLA.
Dr. Sadun actively pursues and has received the greatest distinction in all three classical academic missions. His research in vision was honored by the lifetime achievement award given by Lighthouse International, the 1999 Pisart Award, His contributions to residency teaching in ophthalmology were honored by the AAO and AUPO highest award for education, the 2002 Straatsma Prize. In 2012, Dr. Sadun received the Hoyt Award, the highest prize offered in clinical neuro-ophthalmology, given jointly by the AAO and NANOS. He also received the prestigious Heed Award for Academic Excellence at the AAO meetings in 2014 and Albert Einstein Col. Of Medicine’s highest honor for contributions in science and medicine, the Purpura Prize, in 2016. He was a recipient of the AAO Life Achievement Award, 2017 and the ARVO Gold Fellow Award, 2020.
Dr. Sadun is an international authority in neuro-ophthalmology and especially in diseases of the optic nerve. He has published over 410 peer-reviewed articles, 80 book chapters and co-authored or edited 5 books. He has over 30,000 citations and an H-factor of over 75. Dr. Sadun was a leader of ophthalmology residency programs directors becoming the first president of the AUPO Program Directors’ Council.
Dr. Sadun maintains an active laboratory with research centered on the clinical, psychophysical and laboratory studies of diseases of the optic nerve. Dr. Sadun was the first to identify an optic neuropathy associated with Alzheimer’s disease. In 1993, the United Nations asked him to lead an investigative team to determine the cause of an epidemic of optic neuropathy in Cuba. In these and other studies, he has investigated the role of mitochondria in the brain, optic nerve and retina.