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Department of Ophthalmology

The Saint Louis University Department of Ophthalmology is a major tertiary eye care center, staffed by members of the department within the Saint Louis University School of Medicine. The department offers comprehensive ophthalmic services and research in many areas.

In 1890 Carl Barck, M.D., helped found the Marion–Sims College of Medicine in St. Louis. He became the first chairman of ophthalmology when Saint Louis University absorbed the college at the turn of the century.

More than 100 years later, the Department of Ophthalmology at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine continues a pursuit of excellence in providing patient care, resident education and ophthalmological research.


The Saint Louis University Eye Institute houses state-of-the-art facilities for conducting basic and clinical eye research.

Current areas of basic science investigations include:

  • Animal models of hereditary retinal degenerations
  • Lipid metabolism in the context of retinal degenerations
  • Molecular mechanisms of photoreceptor signal transduction
  • The molecular basis of glaucoma

These research programs employ modern methods of biochemistry, cell biology, molecular biology, pharmacology and immunology.

Approximately 8,500 square feet of space is devoted to laboratories and shared core equipment facilities, in addition to a 4,000 square foot vivarium for experimental animal housing.

Residents are encouraged to participate in research in ongoing subspecialty projects and other research specific to the eye.

The Investigational Study Program provides for evaluation of ophthalmic applications of new drugs and therapeutic treatment procedures. Our departmental faculty has several currently approved IRB protocols for conducting research involving human subjects. Clinical research investigations also are ongoing in pediatric ophthalmology, diabetic retinopathy, age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma and ocular plastics.

In addition, the department participates in other study protocols in collaboration with Saint Louis University's Department of Internal Medicine and its divisions of cardiology, endocrinology, hematology/oncology, as well as the departments of neurology and psychiatry.

Grand Rounds

Presentations begin at 7:45 a.m. in the West Pavilion, third floor auditorium.