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NATIONAL COUNCIL TO COMBAT BLINDNESS, INO.
Grant-in-aid awards prior to 1953
Boston City Hospital...
Study into electrical responses of retina and brain
in patients with amblyopia ex anopsia and sup
pression. New York Medical College, Flower and Regional light sensitivity of the retina-technique Fifth Avenue Hospitals.
and theory. Northwestern University Medical College. Quantitative measurements of ocular fluorescein
fluorescence in normal and glaucomatous eyes. Nuffield Laboratory of Ophthalmology, the Investigation into the normal and abnormal
Eye Hospital, Oxford University, Eng. structures of the vitreous humor by michroland.
chemical and histochemical methods. University of Pennsylvania.....
Virus infections of ocular tissues grafted onto the
choricallantoic membrane of the chick mem
their role in the composition of the vitreous
the vitreous gel.
with amblyopia ex anopsia and suppression. New York University Post-Graduate Attempts to grow the virus of inclusion conjuncMedical School.
tivitus, follicular conjunctivitus, and folliculo
sis. New York Eye and Ear Infirmary .... Investigation into the role of focal infection in the
etiology of nonspecific ocular inflammation, University Hospitals, University of Iowa. Investigation into the incidence and basic cause
of cataract, hemorrhages, and degenerative
choricallantoic membrane of the chick embryo. Government Hospital, Haifa, Israel.. Investigation into factors affecting new vessel
growth into the cornea. Indiana University Medical School. Study into the mechanism of development of con.
tralateral granulomatous uveitis from the use of
horse serum in rabbits. New York Hospital, Cornell Medical Retinopathy in diabetes.
Fifth Avenue Hospitals (continuation). and theory:
and Ear Infirmary (continuation).
with amblyopia ex anopsia and suppression. New York Eye and Ear Infirmary.
The possible role of hyperstrinism in the etiology
of retrolental fibroplasia. Wills Eye Hospital, Philadelphia.. Investigation of the intermediary reactions and
the enzyme systems involved in the anaerobic
glycosis of the lens. New York Medical College, Flower and Detection of plane polarized light by the human Fifth Avenue Hospitals.
eye. Stanford University School of Medicine... | Visual characteristics of macular and peripheral
retina in amblyopia associated with convergent
and divergent deviation. University of Louisville School of Medi- Role of estrogenic and androgenic substances on cine.
the retinal vascular pattern in alloxan diabetic
rats. New York Hospital, Cornell Medical Investigations into the efficacy of certain therapies Center.
in the treatment of retinitis pigmentosa and
other night blinding diseases.
substances related to adrenalin and its deriva
tions of beta-irradiation applicators for use in
Grant-in-aid and fellowship awards for the fiscal year 1953-54
1. Goodwin, M. Breinin, M. D.
New York University, Post
Graduate Medical School.
2. Hermann M. Burian, M.D. (continua- | Department of Ophthalmoltion grant).
ogy, University Hospitals,
Iowa City, Iowa.
School of Medicine.
Neotetrazolium studies in the eye (de- Study of the physiology of the eye to determine under
certain abnormal conditions problems relating to
glaucoma, cataracts, and corneal transplantation.
responses in relation to defective vision in children
retina in children and adults.
type of cataract by inducing the condition in experi-
found in infants and growing children.
and relation of measurements to investigation may provide valuable information
with regard to myopia and concerning eyeballs
actions and the enzyme systems further clarify method of lens development and
animals. This disease called toxoplasmosis can be
ing the retina.
effective techniques in preventing and healing of
scars in the cornea of the eye.
lens, glaucoma and other congenital abnormalities.
Turkish eye specialist and is concerned with a
Wills Eye Hospital, Phila
University of Chicago.
Grant-in-aid and fellowship awards for the fiscal year 1953-54–Continued
1,500 Experimental study of effects of beta Study to improve the safety of X-ray treatment of irradiation.
the eye. 13,600 Fine structure of photoreceptors. Study into certain structures of the human eye, par
ticularly the rods and cones, the cells which have
with sarcoidosis (ocular and other) upon certain blood serum reaction for tuberculosis
10. Fred M. Wilson, M. D., (combination Indiana University Medical grant).
Center. 11. Jerome J, Wolken, Ph. D.
Eye and Ear Hospital,
12. Max Fine, M. D
Stanford University, School
of Medicine, San Fran-
1 This award includes graduate student fellowship stipend.
1. Edgar Auerbach, M. D.1.
University Hospitals, State
University of Iowa.
2. Torvard Laurent, M. D.
Retina Foundation, Massa
chusetts Eye and Ear In-
$4, 200 Retinal physiology.
Study into the function of the retina by means of elec
trical investigation in order to provide further
abnormal conditions of the retina.
of the human eye. Changes in the vitreous are
destroy sight in humans.
ken. Amount of this stipend in-
3. Stanley Jerold Solomon
Eye and Ear Hospital,
| This fellow is being financed by the Michael Tenzer Memorial Fund of the National Council To Combat Blindness.
The CHAIRMAN. We thank you. Dr. Gordon, I feel terribly embarrassed.
Miss WEISENFELD. Dr. Gordon has asked me to include in the record his statement.
The CHAIRMAN. It will be included in the record at this point. (The statement referred to is as follows:)
STATEMENT OF DAN M. GORDON, M. D., NEW YORK
Graduate of the School of Medicine, University of Michigan, 1932.
County Medical Societies.
ness Council. Author of various ophthalmological articles. Special consultant in ophthalmology to the Surgeon General United States Public
The organization of the average medical school eye department in this country has not been conducive to the conduction of a good eye research program, until recently. Since ophthalmology is primarily a clinical subject, most eye departments are headed by part-time clinicians, who (for the most part) are too busy with their private practices to devote much time to their departments or to research programs. Those who are and were desirous of carrying out intensive research projects on a large scale involving ophthalmologists, cheinists, physicists and other allied technical skills were (and are) stymied by lack of funds. Most departments still lack adequate funds with which to carry out their necessary teaching programs; and depend upon part-time men who devote their time free. Postgraduate programs are virtually nonexistent in most medical school eye departments excepting for the training of their own immediate house staffs (interns and residents).
During the last decade or so there has been a gradual change in the organizational policies of many medical schools in the direction of building up the socalled minor specialties (eye, ear, nose and throat, dermatology, neurology, etc.) into major departments.
This has involved the gradual replacement (where funds could be found) of part time heads, etc., by full time men and the addition of other full time men ; with the concommitant stimulation of subspecialization within the field of ophthalmology. This latter has meant that many well trained men are now devoting themselves to the study of various problems within the broad field of ophthalmology (such as diseases of one part of the eye, the various diseases involving the eye and the brain together, etc.) Since problems and fields tend to overlap this intense concentration on, what appear to be, very small areas within a broad field has actually meant that as one problem is solved, a key has automatically been furnished which may open the door to the solution of a related problem.
As a matter of fact there has been an awakening consciousness of the fact that the eye is part of the whole body and is involved in the ilnesses of the latter. A good example of this is diabetes, a general disease which is high in the list of causes of blindness. One of your own Members of Congress is blind as a result of diabetes. Another example is that the hormones ACTH and cortisone which were brought out for the relief of arthritis have proved more valuable in the treatment of certain blinding eye diseases. It is to the eternal credit of Congress that the first funds which facilitated this great research program in all phases of medicine were appropriated by your body.
It is no secret that the medical schools have been hamstrung by lack of funds; and that this dearth has inevitably handicapped the smaller departments more than the larger ones. Since the eye departments are usually the smaller ones (numerically) in each medical school, they have suffered bitterly on this score. In many medical schools the eye department is a part of surgery, and dependent upon that department for funds for its very life. Since the surgical department never has sufficient funds for its own ends, it follows that the eye department suffers the consequences of that poverty. Since practically all research in the feld of blindness is done in medical schools, it follows that the flames of progress depend upon outside funds for fuel. The amount of such moneys has been virtually negligible until the creation of the Institute of Neurological Diseases and Blindness. The speaker has had the privilege of being on the first council of that institute.
The impact of this institute on the eye profession has been a deep one. Many eye departments which formerly have gone begging for funds and which have bad difficulty in holding their staffs together (for want of funds with which to pay salaries, etc.) have suddenly sprung into full bloom as a result of this aid. The Retina Foundation in Boston is one of these. Western Reserve is another which has been built up by such funds. The University of Indiana is another. In fact many of the top eye departments in this country owe their high positions and excellent research programs to the funds supplied by this country. If that aid was suddenly withdrawn the wheels of eye research in this country would come to an almost virtual standstill in many institutions. The bulk of the present day work on inflammatory eye diseases which has saved so many thousands from blindness has been done by men financed by the institute. The brilliant work and new advances in retinal detachment surgery has received much of its financial support from Government funds. The beautiful work done at Manhattan Eye and Ear Hospital in the elucidation of certain previously unknown facts about the retina was done on your funds; as was the equally brilliant work at Western Reserve University on the electrical responses of the eye. The only important work on a new diagnostic tool, the pupilography camera, is being carried out with institute funds at Columbia University. I could similarly point out example after example of invaluable discoveries made solely because a far-seeing Congress has made funds available-limited though these may have been.
The investigation of eye disease is but a phase in a much broader problem. Once important discoveries have been made, these must become available to the afflicted public. It requires about 5 years for new treatments to percolate down through the masses. Methods of postgraduate education must be extended, provided, and stimulated. New teaching mechanisms must be devised for the more rapid dissemination of knowledge. Teachers must be trained in increasing numbers. The research director of one large institution has told me that I would be amazed at the number of men who still do not know how to use antibiotics (penicillin, etc.) properly. At the present time it does not pay a man to stay in a medical school as a teacher; the salary rarely is sufficient to feed and rear a family.
If one takes into consideration the many thousands necessary to finance the rehabilitation of one blind person and multiplies that by the number of people saved from blindness only at those institutions which carried out their research programs on inflammatory eye diseases with Government funds--the amount of money saved this and future governments in welfare funds and income-tax exemptions would finance the institute for years to come.
Gentlemen, this is a program which is beyond the scope and ability of any private agency in the field. Only an organization such as the institute could correlate the research programs of all of the medical schools and command their respect and support. Actually, most private agencies are, by necessity, limited almost entirely to educational and rehabilitative work. Only the Government is capable of financing, coordinating, and facilitating the broad research programs necessary to save many thousands of people from preventable blindness.
It is one of the ironie tragedies of life that the more that medical science has done (and will do) to prolong life (at either end of the scale) the greater and more manifold become the other problems which arise out of that very longevity. The steps toward adding years have meant the addition of the problems of the aging eye to the other unsolved problems facing the eye man. Cataracts, glaucoma, diseases of the blood vessels and of the retina plague the population in