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Zietchick Research Institute delivers the Jeffrey W. Berger Memorial Lecture

Industry: Medical

Zietchick Research Institute Director, Dr. Tammy Movsas, delivered the Jeffrey W Berger (JWB) Memorial Lecture on September 19, 2019 at Scheie Eye Institute at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA. Until just three weeks before his untimely passing at 37 years of age in 2001, Dr. Jeffrey Berger was absolutely full of life. He was a vibrant father, friend, ophthalmic surgeon, teacher and scientist.

Philadelphia, PA (PRUnderground) October 1st, 2019

Within his short tenure at Scheie Eye Institute, Dr. Jeffrey  Berger founded the Computer Vision Laboratory and served as Principal Investigator of the Reading Center of the Complications of AMD Prevention Trial. In addition, he served as Chief of the Retina Service at the Philadelphia VA Medical Center.. He developed a system for evaluating digital retinal images that was applicable to patient care as well as clinical trials. He was also the principal editor of the textbook entitled “Age-related macular degeneration” published in 1999

Tammy Movsas, now the Director of Zietchick Research Institute, first met Jeff when she was 16 years old at the Hampshire College Summer Studies Program (HCSSP) in Mathematics in 1980. HCSSP, was a unique program to bring together high school students with a passion for mathematics. After the program, the two of them lost touch for more than a decade.  However, in 1995, they became neighbors in Cherry Hill, NJ, a suburb of Philadelphia. Dr. Movsas greatly remembers his humility.  “He was a rising star in the ophthalmology world but if you didn’t know him professionally, you wouldn’t know it.  He never spoke about his many accomplishments.”, she said.

To an audience filled with both ophthalmologists as well as Jeff Berger family members, Dr. Movsas spoke about the exciting research occurring at Zietchick Research Institute.  The title of her talk was “The Unexpected Role of Gonadotropins in the Eye.”  Gonadotropins are hormones that classically target the reproductive organs such as the uterus, ovary and testis. She spoke about how Zietchick Research Institute has been the first to discover that gonadotropins play a role in promoting blood vessel formation in the eye.

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