All grant funding decisions made by National Eye Research Centre are based on the recommendations of our independent Scientific Advisory Committee (SAC). This panel of experts is comprised of leading and highly respected ophthalmologists who work to strict terms of reference and code of conduct.

The Scientific Advisory Committee currently comprises:

Professor Sobha Sivaprasad, MS Ophth, DNB, DM, FRCS, FRCOphth, Kings’s College London (Chair)

Professor Sivaprasad is a Consultant Ophthalmologist at Moorfields Eye Hospital and King’s College Hospital, London, and a Reader at King’s College London. Her research is focussed on clinical trials investigating new treatments in retinal vascular diseases, including macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. She is a member of the Macular Society.

Dr. Clare Bailey, MD, FRCP, FRCOphth, University of Bristol

Clare is Consultant Ophthalmologist, and joint Clinical Lead at Bristol Eye Hospital. She leads clinical research into treatment for retinal disorders, particularly age-related macular degeneration diabetic retinopathy and retinal vein occlusion.

Professor Alastair Denniston, MA, MRCP, FRCOphth, PhD, University of Birmingham

Professor Denniston is Consultant Ophthalmologist (Uveitis/Medical Retina) at the University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust and an Honorary Professor at the University of Birmingham. His research centres around understanding what causes intraocular inflammation (uveitis) and other inflammatory eye diseases. He co-authored the Oxford Handbook of Ophthalmology. 

Professor Chris F Inglehearn, BSc, PhD, University of Leeds

Chris is Professor of Molecular Ophthalmology at the University of Leeds. He set up the Leeds Vision Research Group, which focusses on the genetic and functional cause of inherited retinal diseases, including retinitis pigmentosa (RP), Cone-Rod Dystrophy (CRD) and Leber Congenital Amaurosis. He has written or co-authored over 200 research papers on human inherited blindness and, after broadening his research interests, on genetic tooth enamel defects.

Dr J. Arjuna Ratnayaka, BSc, MPhil, DIC, PhD, University of Southampton

Dr Arjuna is a Lecturer in Vision Sciences at the University of Southampton. He leads his team in studies around the molecular causes degeneration of the retina. Some of his work has led to new insight into the causes of age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD). He delivers public lectures and workshops to raise awareness of blinding diseases, as well as conditions such as Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Professor Alan Stitt, Queen's University, Belfast

Professor Stitt is Dean of Innovation and Impact at Queen’s University. His research into diabetic retinopathy and age-related retinal diseases, has led to the development of several drugs that have progressed to clinical trials in diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular oedema. He is a Fellow of the Association for Research in Vision & Ophthalmology (ARVO).

Professor Marcela Votruba, PhD, FRCOphth, University of Cardiff

Professor Voruba is Head of the School of Optometry and Vision Sciences at Cardiff University. She runs a Retinal Clinic and a Genetic Eye Clinic at the University Hospital of Wales. Her research looks into the causes of inherited retinal and optic nerve diseases, and she recruits patients with inherited optic neuropathy for genetic screening to assist her research.

Dr Anthony Vugler, BSc, PhD, University College London

Dr Anthony Vugler is Lecturer in Retinal Neurobiology and Programme Director for MSc Investigative Ophthalmology and Vision Science at UCL. He investigates the causes of conditions such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and how to restore function to the diseased visual system. He is part of the London Project to Cure Blindness research team, who have discovered a new treatment using stem cells for wet AMD that has led to patients regaining their reading vision.

Professor Andrew Webster, MB.ChB, MA, FRCOphth, FRCS, University College London

Professor Webster is Chair of Molecular Ophthalmology at UCL and a Consultant Ophthalmologist at Moorfields Eye Hospital. His team at the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre (a partnership between Moorfields and UCL) discovered breakthroughs in understanding specific genetic changes causing retinal disease, which bring us closer to potential new treatments.

The Terms of reference for SAC:

View the terms of reference for SAC here.

The code of conduct for SAC:

View the code of conduct for SAC here.