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Sankara Nethralaya
Sankara Nethralaya
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Department of Larsen & Toubro Ocular Pathology
About Us

Ocular Pathology

The department of Ocular Pathology, Vision Research Foundation, a unit of Sankara Nethralaya, Chennai started in 1986 supporting the need of the hospital by carrying out routine pathological diagnosis and investigations related to ocular diseases. The Department received 1595 histopathology specimens and 207 cytology specimens last year and is deeply involved in clinical and basic research work. The department however soon launched into research starting with articles of clinicopathological correlations with Dr.J. Biswas specialising in HIV induced ocular pathology. Dr.S.Krishnakumar who joined in 1998 brought his interest in cancers and began in a small way to address questions in retinoblastoma research. This has involved identifying possible markers, both general and specific to diagnose retinoblastoma at a curative stage and possible treatment of the tumour with different drugs, including herbal ones. Recently, the laboratory has initiated work in multiple directions like stem cells and neuroscience. The lab has successfully isolated progenitor cells from non-retinal ocular tissue as well as initiated transplantation work in the eye. Dr.Nivedita Chatterjee initiated the neuroscience work on joining in 2007. Her specialisation is in neuron-glia biology and see is using molecular and cell biology techniques to look at neuroprotection in the eye. She also works with C.elegans as a model system to study neuron glia interactions, with emphasis on neuronal regeneration. The current focus of the department is in signal transduction pathways in neuron-glia crosstalk, cancer biology and in retinal stem cells. Some of this work is in collaboration with department/institutes in chennai and elsewhere in India. The work is mostly funded by government and international agencies, DBT, ICMR, DST and CSIR. The department takes active participation in teaching several courses run at VIBS affiliated to BITS Pilani. There are at present 8 students working towards their Ph.D in collaboration with BITS Pilani and SASTRA. It has received several awards and international recognition for research and has above 300 publications.