AN N UAL REPORT
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TRANSFORMING A word for our time By Lawton Snyder, CEO, Eye & Ear Foundation of Pittsburgh
The Eye & Ear Foundation of Pittsburgh has supported numerous research initiatives in the 30+ years since we were chartered. There are many examples of how support from Eye & Ear Foundation was pivotal to the translational research the scientists in the Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine initiated to develop a new treatment or therapy for patients. Whether the support is from a large donation from one individual or several individuals making smaller donations, we refer to these gifts, and the research outcomes, as transformative. Over the next few years, you will hear this word mentioned frequently as we are focused on some very transformative projects. The Eye & Ear Foundation and our Board of Directors have made a commitment to help our Chairmen, JosĂŠ-Alain Sahel, MD and Jonas T. Johnson, MD with their very ambitious goals to lead the world in new discoveries and to change patient care. Your commitment to support the Eye & Ear Foundation makes you one of the agents of change, unsatisfied with the limited options to prevent or treat vision loss, hearing loss, tinnitus, or suffering after treatment of head neck cancer. You are dedicated, as all of us are at the Eye & Ear Foundation to transforming care. We believe the University of Pittsburgh Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology are in a unique position to truly transform care, and because of your generous support, we are only limited by our imagination.
Ruth G. Auld, EdD Executive Director, DePaul School for Hearing & Speech
Carole L. Kamin Retired Manager-Buyer, Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh
Henry S. Beukema (Retired) Executive Director McCune Foundation
Arthur S. Levine, MD, Exofficio Senior Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences John and Gertrude Petersen Dean University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
Charles R. Brodbeck Vice Chairman of the Board Director, Cohen & Grigsby, PC
Jeffrey B. Markel Managing Director, Perspective Capital
Charles C. Cohen, Honorary Director Founding Partner and Chairman Emeritus Cohen & Grigsby, PC
Michele McKenney Founder and Managing Member McKenney Home Care
Deepinder Dhaliwal, MD, LAc Director, Cornea & Refractive Surgery Department of Ophthalmology University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
Diana L. Mrvos, MD Ophthalmologist
Douglas P. Dick Co-Chairman & CEO, Dick Building Company George A. Fechter, Chairman of the Board Chairman, Fechter Holdings Louis J. Fox Former SVP Gerald Metals, Inc. Lawrence N. Gumberg, Treasurer President, LG Realty Advisors, Inc. Jonas T. Johnson, MD, FACS Distinguished Service Professor and Chairman, Department of Otolaryngology The Dr. Eugene N. Myers Endowed Chair University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
Albert C. Muse President, The Muse Company Eugene N. Myers, MD, FACS, FRCS Edin (Hon) Distinguished Professor and Emeritus Chair Department of Otolaryngology University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine B. Gordon Nelson, III President, B. G. Nelson, LLC JosĂŠ-Alain Sahel, MD Professor and Chairman Department of Ophthalmology Eye & Ear Foundation Endowed Chair University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
E. Ronald Salvitti, MD Ophthalmologist Founder and Medical Director Southwestern Pennsylvania Eye Center James L. Soffer President, Soffer Organization Cynthia Mosites Sunseri, Secretary Howard Hanna Realty Paul R. Vittone Head of Private Equity Investments Bank of New York Mellon Wealth Management Nancy D. Washington Chairman, Board of Trustees Point Park University Bruce Wiegand Former President/CEO & General Counsel Phillips Companies Aldo Zini President & CEO, Aethon, Inc
Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
ANOTHER TRANSFORMATIVE YEAR Thanks to the support of the Eye & Ear Foundation, the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC our plans in the Department of Ophthalmology are unfolding nicely. In March 2019, we celebrated the groundbreaking for our new building dedicated to Vision and also Rehabilitation. The excavation work is progressing and our new building, expected to become one of the most important in the world should open in 2022. Meanwhile, we completed the renovation of our St. Margaret Eye Center location, with an immediate impact on the access to and quality of care. This site has been ranked as the fastest-progressing inpatient experience for the whole system. Our optical shop on Forbes Avenue in Oakland has been relocated and expanded with a new design, increased capacity and the activity has almost doubled over the past few months. We have also remodeled our Eye and Ear Institute Center located in Oakland to improve flow and experience, reducing patient waiting time. We are beginning several innovative clinical trials in areas like: clinical imaging, gene therapy, optogenetics, prosthetics, low vision devices, and corneal regenerative therapies, with more soon to come. 2
Several Department faculty obtained new funding from Research to Prevent Blindness, Foundation Fighting Blindness (including a major project on optogenetics in partnership with the Paris Vision Institute), and the National Institutes of Health. UPMC through the ITTC is funding projects in several laboratories (Jeff Gross, Debasish Sinha, Anthony St. Leger, Morgan Fedorchak) and through the digital initiatives, is working with us on telemedicine, and enhancing remote patient access. Two faculty members were promoted to Endowed Chairs: Kip Kinchington to the Joseph F. Novak, MD Chair and Debasish Sinha to the Jennifer Salvitti Davis, MD Chair in Ophthalmology Research. New faculty have joined us: Susana Da Silva, an expert in the biology of the macula, coming from Harvard University, Marie-HĂŠlĂ¨ne Errera, an expert in ocular inflammatory diseases, coming from Paris, Preethi and Jay Chabblani, respectively a leading pediatric ophthalmologist and a leading expert in retinal conditions and artificial intelligence. Our fundraising campaign, led by the Eye & Ear Foundation with strong support from the University already met significant success with program support for low vision and mobility, corneal stem cell therapy development, the initiative to cure glaucoma, and continued support for optic nerve regeneration as part of the work being done at the Louis J. Fox Center for Vision Restoration. Recent support from
•Artificial Intelligence •Corneal Blindness •Cortical Vision •Glaucoma •Optic Nerve Regeneration •Retinal Degeneration
the Wiegand Entrepreneurial Fund is helping us bring important new therapies to market. Along with the new Jennifer Salvitti Davis, MD Chair in Ophthalmology Research, we have also received a generous gift to establish the Martin McGuinn Retina Research Fellowship to study degenerative retinal conditions primarily for retinitis pigmentosa. The Shear Foundation has supported critical work allowing us to grow our capacity in artificial intelligence and machine learning processes. The Richard King Mellon Foundation recently granted us a $6 million transformative grant to support research on Cortical Vision, an ambitious Vision Restoration program for untreatable blindness. This grant will help us to recruit outstanding scientists forming with existing teams a hub for cortical stimulation in the blind. We have established several task forces where clinicians, scientists, and philanthropists are joining forces around major diseases or strategies, such as corneal blindness, glaucoma, retinal degenerations, artificial intelligence, optic nerve regeneration, and cortical vision. Our ultimate goal is to provide the most advanced and accessible care to our patients. This year brought us closer. We need to continue and increase our efforts as the challenge posed by blindness is immense.
José-Alain Sahel, MD Professor and Chairman, Department of Ophthalmology The Eye & Ear Foundation Endowed Chair University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
TRANSFORMATIVE CARE The faculty of the Department of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine is charged with the provision of cuttingedge patient care, the performance of research and educating the next generation of physicians. We remain committed to these core components of our mission. Our surgeons practice medicine in an environment of both education and research. Medical students, as well as postdoctoral trainees (residents and fellows), frequently accompany our faculty in the clinic and in the operating room. These young people learn â€œat the bedsideâ€? where they are provided with clinical acumen and the consistent challenge to read more to maximize their training. Residency training at the University of Pittsburgh requires a minimum of 5 years after graduation from medical school. At the time of completion of the residency, some of our surgeons go into practice in their community while others go on to become subspecialty trained. This requires a 1-2-year fellowship. The majority of our fellowship-trained surgeons then join an academic medical practice.
We are committed to biomedical research. Our faculty includes several scientists doing laboratory research. The most prominent team has been organized as the Pittsburgh Hearing Research Center. Founded by Thanos Tzounopoulos, PhD, the Pittsburgh Hearing Research Center is a multidisciplinary team of clinicians and basic scientists trying to understand how hearing and sound perception work at the mechanistic level. Recently recruited researchers include: Ross Williamson, PhD from Harvard MEEI, an expert in brain plasticity after hearing loss and Michele Insanally, PhD from NYU, an expert in brain circuits of audition. An animal model has been developed which allows the study of hearing loss and the development of tinnitus. Experiments such as these offer the opportunity to develop new therapies which may be appropriate and effective in humans. Our faculty have also been involved in the development of new medications. The most promising have been biologic drugs that may have major importance in the treatment of cancer as well as advanced sinonasal diseases. Alongside the development of new medications, we are also focusing on new medical practices that are tailored to individual patients. Thanks to a generous gift from the Mosites Family, the Eye & Ear Foundation has established the Marian Mosites
•Balance and Voice Disorders •Head & Neck Cancer Survivorship •Hearing Loss •Sino-Nasal and Allergies •Tinnitus •Surgical Training, Innnovation, & Research
Initiative for Personalized Medicine in Head and Neck Cancer. This fund has provided much needed support for nearly five years, and has allowed physicians such as Dr. Umamaheswar Duvvuri the ability to pursue both surgical innovation and basic science techniques that will help patients going through such a difficult form of cancer. The physicians in the Department of Otolaryngology continue to run a Survivorship Clinic for people with cancer of the head, neck and throat. This multidisciplinary team has helped over 1,600 patients. Through the clinic we are not only able to provide more comprehensive patient care, but are also able to focus on gaining a better understanding of cancer symptoms and the symptoms that develop after treatment, such as cognitive decline, repeat head and neck cancer, and the prevalence and morbidity of dysphagia. We are then able to investigate and initiate new therapeutic interventions. The Otolaryngology Department has Research teams focused on better understanding and treating sleep apnea, balance disorders, voice disorders, Eustachian tube dysfunction, and many other disorders affecting the ears, nose and throat. Interested individuals are invited to contact the Eye and Ear Foundation for more information.
Jonas T. Johnson, MD, FACS Distinguished Service Professor and Chairman, Department of Otolaryngology The Dr. Eugene N. Myers Endowed Chair University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
EYE & EAR SUPPORTERS
The Eye & Ear Foundation of Pittsburgh gratefully recognizes the individual’s organizations, trusts, and foundations, whose generosity allows us to bring new science for new solutions to people with diseases and disorders of the eye, ear, nose, throat, head, and neck. In the fiscal year 2019, our philanthropic support reached $10,082,530 in dollars raised, with 775 total gifts to support the research and academic efforts for the Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Thank you for your generosity!
CHAIRMEN CIRCLE DONORS The Chairmen Circle recognizes and celebrates our especially generous donors who have contributed $1,000 during our fiscal year 2019.
$1,000,000+ Richard King Mellon Foundation
$100,000+ Anonymous Giver Margaret Ritchie Battle Jack Buncher Foundation J. Samuel & Rose Y. Cox Foundation Foundation for Fighting Blindness Drue and H.J. Heinz II Charitable Lead Trust Horne Trust Research to Prevent Blindness, Inc. Herbert and Barbara Shear Bruce and Barbara Wiegand $50,000 - $99,999 Louis and Dorothy Fox Sheldon Marstine Martin and Susan McGuinn Steve and Marian Mosites Usher F1 Collaborative, Inc.
$25,000 - $49,000 The Anne L. and George H. Clapp Charitable & Educational Trust Thomas and Mary Donahoe Gerard M. Moufflet Huberta S. Siciliano $10,000 - $24,999 Travis Abbott James and Sarah Bregenser Jack D. Elalouf John and Diane Fisher Gary and Victoria Frenette Jacob and Frieda Hunkele Jonas and Janis Johnson Ruth L. Kuschmierz Ladies Hospital Aid Society of Western PA Anne Lewis Martha Lockhart Mason Trust Mary Lockton Diana L. Mrvos and Frank Rath, Jr. Albert and Eileen Muse Lewis and Donna Patterson John and Cathy Pelusi James S. Reilly and Barbara Kip José-Alain and Annie Sahel Pamela R. Schanwald and James Keen Diana Shoemaker TransEnterix, Inc. Betty Lou Yount Trust
$5,000 - $9,999 Glenn and Jane Amsbaugh Henry and Charlotte Beukema Charles and Jill Brodbeck Carl and Beth Campbell Charles C. Cohen and Michele McKenney R. Joel and Lynda Coslov Jacqueline Ellis Milton and Sheila Fine Jane V. Love James and Marlee Myers Donald & Sylvia Robinson Family Foundation E. Ronald and Diann Salvitti William and Saundra Stout David and Cynthia Sunseri $1,000 - $4,999 Anonymous Givers (2) William and Margaret Barati Richard A. Bowers and Miriam Rader Charles and Mary Ely Brennan James and Suzanne Broadhurst Keith and Michael Clauson Deepinder K. Dhaliwal and Sanjiv Singh Douglas and Laura Dick David and Carol Eibling Laura Fisher George Fechter & Christine Fulton Lawrence and Ina Gumberg Neil and Joyce Hay-Roe Steven Higger E. Benson Hood Laboratories, Inc. David and Louise Horvath
Daniel and Carole Kamin Timothy and Elizabeth Katen Sherin H. Knowles John and Penny Kramer John and Mary Lacarte David and Diane Laughlin Lockhart Trust Catherine and Mark Loevner Spyros Macris Michael and Linda Magidson Jeffrey Markel and Carol Robinson Jerry and Jane Masters Daniel E. McLain Eugene and Barbara Myers B. Gordon and Kennedy Nelson Dean and Lynnette Panos John and Rosemarie Parse Penn Center Management Corp Howard and Bette Rom Gary and Mildred Ryan Stephen Sakumoto Francis and Madeline Shane Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation Lester and Arlene Shapiro Lawton and Susan Snyder Violet L. Soffer† D. Fred and Judith Stewart Nancy D. Washington Michael and Deborah Wasilchak Evan and Laura Waxman Western Pennsylvania Lions Hearing Foundation James and Beverly Withiam Charles E. Yankel Thomas E. Zuck
EVERY CONTRIBUTION, NO MATTER THE SIZE, HELPS TO ADVANCE RESEARCH. The Eye & Ear Foundation is the sole support organization for the Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. The money we raise supports the research and educational efforts within these two Departments. Your gift makes a difference. To learn more, please contact the Foundation office at 412-864-1300. 6
$500 - $999 Sheila A. Apicella Aquia Evening Lions Charities Inc Ruth and Robert Auld Albert and Barbara Biglan James and Dianne Boyle Denise Capurso Ann D. Catlett Mark and Elaine Ehalt Milton and Sarita Eisner Andrew and Andrea Eller ENT & Allergy Specialists of WPA, P.C. Danforth and Nancy Fales Norman and Melinda Fogel Philip Gasiewicz Marcus and Carole Gottlieb Ralph E. Grabowsky Donna Guaetta-Kohr Van and Paula Hall Edward and Mary Lou Harrison William Kreitzer Richard and Martha Masson Richard and Janet McNeel Steven M. Parnes Joseph and Cheryl Pastor Robert and Marilyn Roither Karl and Kathleen Salesi David E. Scopa Damon Simms Charles and Patricia Slater Garrett and Ruth Stauffer UPMC Lee and Michelle Zimmer $100 - $499 Donna Albright Elizabeth Allcroft Ronald S. Angerman Anonymous Givers (4) George and Suzanne Ashman Barbara A. Atwell Elizabeth M. Austin George and Linda Austin Michael and Carol Azar Lawrence Bagley Maureen Barnard Robert Behler Thomas Bennett Judy A. Bentz Jennifer K. Berge Alice Berkey Douglas M. Bevan J. D. Bills Pamela M. Bolkovac Eugene and Mary Jane Bolter James and Kathleen Braham John and Mary Ann Brenkus Nancy T. Brown Helen M. Bucci Daniel and Michele Bursick Joseph Calihan
Joseph and Carol Cambridge Connie B. Cantor James W. Christy, Jr David N. Clark Clarence and Adren Cook Peter Cooke Richard Cox Fredrica Cryan Allan Curran Ada Davis and Joseph Spirer Margaret Degnan William J. Dempsey Dollar Bank Real Estate Lending and Services Dragonswood Advisors, Inc. Brandon Dunlevy Susan E. Dusecina Emerald Coast ENT Glenn and Kathy Finley Sylvia F. Fischer Edith H. Fisher Anne C. Flanagan Carl B. Frankel Alan Friday James and Martha Funderburgh Paul and Molly Gabos Marjorie A. Gallardy Mary Louise Gantz J. Gary Gardner Jackie Gartner-Schmidt and Jeffrey R. Schmidt Wayne and Catherine Gerhold James Glascock Rosita C. Go Morton and Racelle Goldstein Lawrence Kaminsky and Nira A. Goldstein Edward M. Goldston Google Inc. Estate of Sarah F. Graf Mary K. Graziano John and Kathleen Green Jeffrey Gross and Jessica Wandelt Marjorie C. Gross Douglas and Julianna Haag Rosanne I. Harrison David and Bonnie Hazen Dallas Hetherington Martha E. Hildebrandt David McL. Hillman Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation Barry E. Hirsch and Jean Harwick David W. Hobbs Gary Hopen and Beth Talansky Hopen Dean E. Hu Douglas and Stephanie Hughes Joseph E. Imbriglia James O. Irwin Kenneth Isaacson James and Nancy Johns Andrew Johnson
Linda M. Kaib Donald L. Keefer Jerry and Joyce Kennedy Ronald and Sandra Kiersarsky Glenn P. Kimball Stefi Kirschner and Gilbert Schneider Michelle L. Klepsky Joseph H. Knowles Mary Knowles Edward and Adriana Kocur Susan P. Koehler Regis Kowalski Dennis and Peggy Kuhnemund Leonard and Mary Labriola Maxwell Lane Thomas and Susan Levine Paul and Pamela Lindermuth Frank and Carol Lipchick Carole M. Lombardo Mark A. Lumadue Sherri Maddick Scott and Muffet McClintock William D. McCrady John T. McGoogan Phyllis E. McKeon Blanche C. McManus Thelma J. Meacci Janet Mikush Barbara T. Miller Edward and Jeanne Miller Arthur and Marie Miltenberger Jay Muchnick Donna G. Nativio Eric and Susan Nernberg Carl Nilsen Susan Oberg Lane Andrew Orochena Stephen and Kristen Pakela Mark and Jill Palmer Marlene C. Patton Jeffrey and Eileen Paul Kathleen Perod Michael and Carol Perry Andrew and Kathleen Petcash Pittsburgh 49 ERS Pittsburgh Emergency Medicine Foundation Louise Platt Carol Pociernicki-Stahl Scott and Susan Portnoy Mildred M. Posvar Heberto Poveda Michael and Nancy Puhalla Norman Radcliffe Donald and Nancy Rakoci Maryanne Reed Mildred A. Rendulic James M. Richey Raymond and Wilma Richman The Ricketson Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation Gary W. Ritchey
James and Elin Roddey Anne M. Rogers Janice Rosenberg J. Pat Ross Loren and Ellen Roth Farrell and Nancy Rubenstein John and Vera Rudzik Guy F. Ruff and Betty J. Lloyd James Rutherford Frederick J. Schirm Jack Scholl Rose Scilla Robert J. Sechan Col. Robert Shanks John and Clelia Sheppard Anita P. Shuttleworth Joseph Siefker Patricia Sierra Frank and Vicki Simonetta Joyce M. Slagel Clyde H. Slease Andrew and Mary Beth Sloan Martha Smith James W. Smith James J. Snyder Arthur and Florita Sonnenklar Sidney Stark William and Rose Strickland Joan M. Surmik Shivalingappa and Sudha Swamynathan Daniel R. Talbot Gary and Monica Tener James and Alice Ternent Charles and Jacqueline Territo Frances J. Urban Dominick and Dolores Vesio John and Donna Viehman Paul and Tara Vittone Marilyn Wagner John Waldman Iris A. Walker Gary Walker Ellen C. Walton John L. Wandrisco David and Wilma Watson Regitze Weingartner Wellman-Prozan Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation Antenor R. Willems Martin and Eileen Winkler Jack Withiam Robert and Nancy Worstell Steve and Iris Wutzke Suzanne Y. Yoder Marlene Yokim Roger P. Zelt Sergey Zharikov John W. Zimmerman
LIFETIME GIVING SOCIETY FINDING A CURE LEVEL $1,000,000+ Anonymous Givers (3) James and Alice Beckwith† Louis and Dorothy Fox Estate of Virginia Huban Richard King Mellon Foundation Research to Prevent Blindness, Inc. E. Ronald Salvitti Bruce and Barbara Wiegand DISCOVERY LEVEL $500,000 - $999,999 Bright Focus Foundation Jack Buncher Foundation Campbell Foundation Eden Hall Foundation Estate of Anne M. Guenther Horne Trust Steven and Marian Mosites The Pittsburgh Foundation PNC Foundation & Charitable Trusts Charles and Louella Snyder Edward N. and Della L. Thome Memorial Foundation Western Pennsylvania Medical Eye Bank Foundation INNOVATION LEVEL $250,000 - $499,999 Margaret Ritchie Battle Sheila and Milton† Fine Foundation for Fighting Blindness Mary Hillman Jennings Foundation Herbert and Barbara Shear
This society represents the highest level of giving to the Eye & Ear Foundation and the Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh. We deeply appreciate those who have stayed dedicated to the Foundation’s mission. COLLABORATION LEVEL $100,000 - $249,999 Abgenix American Endowment Foundation Anonymous Givers (2) L. Spencer Boyd William Boyd† J. Samuel & Rose Y. Cox Foundation Mark Cuban Gary and Victoria Frenette Hearst Foundation Drue and H.J. Heinz II Charitable Lead Trust Jonas and Janis Johnson Ladies Hospital Aid Society of Western PA Martin and Susan McGuinn Albert and Eileen Muse Eugene and Barbara Myers Eve Novak† PA Lions Sight Conservation and Eye Research Foundation Joel and Carole Schuman Huberta S. Siciliano Charles and Pearl Snyder Trust Nancy L. Snyderman Violet L. Soffer† J. Barry and Lenore Stout† RESEARCH LEVEL $50,000 - $99,999 Allergan, Inc. American Cancer Society Anonymous Givers (2) Betty Lou Yount Trust Albert and Barbara Biglan David and Katherine Bradley Charles and Jill Brodbeck
Carl and Beth Campbell Davis Estate DePuy Synthes Power Tools Edith L. Trees Charitable Trust Michael and Kim Evans The Fine Foundation Glaucoma Research Association of Boston John E. and Sue M. Jackson Charitable Trust Knights Templar Eye Foundation, Inc. Ruth L. Kuschmierz Martha Lockhart Mason Trust Sheldon Marstine Nancy McDonald Mary T. Mitskavich Nancy T. Muse† John and Cathy Pelusi Gustavus and Louise Pfeiffer Research Foundation Charles and Jo Ann Queenan V.K. and Rani Raju The Frank E. Rath-Spang & Company Charitable Trust Sumner M. Redstone Charitable Foundation Donald and Sylvia Robinson† Dorothy Sarni† T. Philip Stout† Usher F1 Collaborative, Inc. Thomas A. Wandrisco Aldo and Kathryn Zini EDUCATION LEVEL $25,000 - $49,999 Nancy Adams Anonymous Donor Yanna Avramidis
Henry and Charlotte Beukema Boston Pediatric Neurosurgical Foundation James and Sarah Bregenser The Anne L. and George H. Clapp Charitable & Educational Trust R. Joel and Lynda Coslov Thomas and Mary Donahoe David and Carol Eibling Berrylin J. Ferguson† FISA Foundation John and Diane Fisher Lawrence and Ina Gumberg Hillman Family Foundations Richard Hood† Howard Hughes Medical Institute Torrence M. Hunt† Roy A. Hunt Foundation Intuitive Surgical Operations, Inc. Timothy and Elizabeth Katen Lockhart Trust Love Family Foundation Jane V. Love Jane P. Masters McAuley Ministries Medrobotics Corporation Gerard M. Moufflet James and Marlee Myers John and Mary Nice Helen O’Masta† William H. Rea† James S. Reilly and Barbara Kip José-Alain and Annie Sahel Pamela Schanwald and James Keen Diana Shoemaker United States Steel Foundation Inc. Nancy D. Washington Western Pennsylvania Lions Hearing Foundation
THE SCIENCE & SOLUTIONS SOCIETY MEMORIAL DONATIONS In 2010, the Eye & Ear Foundation established the Science & Solutions Society to recognize those individuals who have made a commitment to the Foundation through a planned estate gift. At this time, we would like to honor the following members of our Science & Solutions Society. Their generosity ensures that the Eye & Ear Foundation continues to provide the support needed to advance the research and academic efforts of the University of Pittsburgh’s Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology. Anonymous Victor and Jody Burdell Sylvia F. Fisher Louis and Dorothy Fox Mary Louise Gantz Barbara J. Giaquinto Van B. Hall Thomas and Loretta Hanwell
Clarence E. Klaus Howard Perlow and Nyoka White Paul E. Rafail, DDS Glenwood C. Scott Ralph E. Tarter, PhD Gayle L. Tissue and Yiannis Kaloyeropoulos David B. Wagner
During the fiscal year 2019, the Eye & Ear Foundation received donations in memory of the following: Phyllis H. Albright David L. Barnes Elizabeth Billings Bernice Bloom Leroy Bowers Bette R. Brant Fitzhugh P. Brown Anne D. Browne Michael R. Bucci Sidney and Sylvia Busis Audrey J. Canelle Donna M. Exler Berrylin J. Ferguson Jenifer Fruit
Donna Grabowsky Aviva K. Gross Mary Guaetta Rose Harkins Anthony Harrison William E. Husk Robert M. Kaniecki Barbara Katz Frederick Kerin James H. Knowles Anita Kurz Shirley Levin Malcolm McCormick Joseph F. Novak
Should you wish to add the Eye & Ear Foundation to your estate plans, please contact us at 412-864-1300.
Robert Raphael Kenneth T. Richardson Sylvia Robinson Lavinia Schumann Dorothy C. Scott Violet L. Soffer Mary A. Stevenson Joseph R. Tatrn Sybil S. Wein Michael A. Weiss Ruth L. Westerman Ludwig and Anna Winkler John G. Wisnoski Mary M. Zuck
HOW THE EYE & EAR FOUNDATION IS TRANSFORMING MEDICINE Donations to the Eye & Ear Foundation are critical to continuing and advancing the cutting-edge research and lifesaving care taking place within the Departments of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. A recent $6 million gift from the Richard King Mellon Foundation being used for cortical vision research highlights how such a transformational gift can help elevate our Departments to be international leaders in patient care through developments of new drugs, better therapies, and state-of-the-art technology. Here are just a few examples of the transformative projects that the Eye & Ear Foundation supports: Optic Nerve In 2008, Louis J. Fox, an alumnus of the University of Pittsburgh, altered the landscape of research at the Department of Ophthalmology by philanthropically supporting the Louis J. Fox Center for Vision Restoration through a transformative donation. The Fox Center is the first national, comprehensive, multi-disciplinary research and clinical program dedicated to ocular regenerative medicine. Mr. Fox’s generosity has led the way for others to support the Fox Center, in its current mission, to improve the lives of people throughout the nation and around the world who have blindness and vision loss due to optic nerve damage. The early successes of the Fox Center, including genomics, epigenetics, stem cell biology and tissue engineering, reached international prominence which promoted an anonymous donor to designate over $2 million in funding to the project in late 2015 to advance the groundbreaking work in regenerative ophthalmology even more rapidly. Pittsburgh CREATES (Collaborative Research, Education, and Technology Enhancement in Surgery) A $2 million gift from an anonymous foundation in December 2016 allowed the Eye & Ear Foundation to help launch Pittsburgh Collaborative Research, Education, and Technology Enhancement in Surgery (CREATES). A transdisciplinary research and education collaboration, CREATES presents a unique opportunity for scientists, clinicians, educators, and industry experts to work together to advance innovation in minimally invasive surgeries. For industry experts, it is also a chance for their products to be tested and reviewed by leading surgeons in various disciplines. Combined efforts of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Carnegie Mellon University, and UPMC will also allow year-round training of advanced surgery techniques to international physicians through enhanced telementoring opportunities, showing that such a donation can help enhance patient care around the world. Glaucoma Glaucoma research at the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Pittsburgh shifted rapidly after the generous multi-year donations of Mrs. Margaret “Ritchie” Battle and many other donors who responded to her challenge grant. Mrs. Battle’s seed money allowed a team of sixteen local scientists and fourteen collaborators to propel research in glaucoma. Ian Conner, MD, PhD, serves as the clinical leader for the Initiative to Cure Glaucoma, and Ian Sigal, PhD, as the scientific lead, as the glaucoma team branches out into new and exciting avenues, including imaging and modeling of the trabecular meshwork in the hopes of finding new methods to lower intraocular pressures, and innovative drugs and drug delivery systems, which will provide greater efficacy and better results. In addition, many other donors including Bruce and Barbara Wiegand, who generously funded an imaging research fellowship, have stimulated success in unprecedented ways. All of the combined support has allowed investigators to create a new glaucoma gene therapy model, design an outflow angiography method, and establish a stem cell seeding technique into the eye’s drainage system.
Marian Mosites Initiative for Personalized Head and Neck Cancer Research Donors to the Eye & Ear Foundation want to know that their support goes to the newest and most innovative science in the field, and we are fortunate that the research in the University of Pittsburgh of Department of Otolaryngology has been at the forefront of research advances for decades. Marian Mosites and her family understood that the issues that underlie head and neck cancer, which she bravely faced and overcame, needed to be tackled using the most advanced science possible, which is, in this case, personalized medicine. Personalized medicine is an approach to research in which physicians use diagnostic tests combined with genetic information to determine which medical treatments will offer patients the highest chance of success while also considering what treatments may not be worth pursuing. Marian and her husband, Steven, after learning the ways in which personalized medicine was the future of cutting-edge treatment for head and neck cancer, decided to establish the Marian Mosites Initiative for Personalized Head and Neck Cancer Research. Their transformational gift allowed for Dr. Robert Ferris, MD, to investigate the immunology of head and neck cancers, and has produced valuable conclusions understanding why an immune system was weakened, what weakened it, and how he can turn it back on to work for the patients he treats. Cornea The Western Pennsylvania Medical Eye Bank Foundation (WPMEBF) has long supported research dedicated to solving issues of the cornea. Founded in 1940 at the former Eye and Ear Hospital of Pittsburgh, the WPMEBF sponsored the first corneal transplant from donor eye tissue. While the Foundation’s functions have been merged into the Center for Organ Recovery and Education (CORE) here in Pittsburgh, they remained dedicated to supporting research in the cornea, and made a transformational gift in 2011 to support Dr. Jim Funderburgh’s corneal stem cell project. Giving this important work a jumpstart, the WPMEBF allowed for major advances in clearing corneal scarring using one’s own stem cells. As a result, this therapy has been successful in trials conducted in India and, soon, in clinical trials in the United States. Sino-Nasal When a clinician can help a patient, who has not achieved successful outcomes elsewhere, the patient is often very grateful for their experience. This is the case for a patient of Stella Lee, MD, of the Department of Otolaryngology who specializes in Sino-Nasal disorders. The donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, made a firsttime gift of $50,000 to the Eye & Ear Foundation to specifically support Dr. Lee’s project, Research in Sino-Nasal and Allergy Disorders. The generous gift offered much needed dedicated research support for these projects and facilities. With the help of this donor, who has since donated another $25,000, Dr. Lee would eventually like to have a dedicated Sino-Nasal and Allergy Research Laboratory, including a tissue bank and a dedicated database which would help to rapidly accelerate her research.
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DEVELOPING A CURE FOR TINNITUS A TIMELINE FOR DISCOVERY Your contributions make a difference! This timeline illustrates how support from Eye & Ear Foundation donors helped Thanos Tzounopoulos, PhD, Professor and Vice Chair of Research, Department of Otolaryngology, and his team at the University of Pittsburgh secure funding from the NIH to advance research towards developing a cure for tinnitus. Thanos Tzounopoulos, PhD
Each circle represents the growing support provided by Eye & Ear Foundation donors, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the Department of Defense (DoD).
Dr. Thanos Tzounopoulos develops an animal model of tinnitus.
Dr. Thanos Tzounopoulos determines that the root of chronic tinnitus exists in the structure of the brain.
In 2013, Dr. Thanos Tzounopoulos identifies the molecular target for correcting tinnitus. A potassium channel is not working properly.
Work begins with medicinal chemist, Dr. Peter Wipf, to modify an existing drug, a potassium channel activator, that has the potential to reduce or remove phantom sound.
Work continues to specifically target the specific potassium channels and reduce other side effects, thus making the molecule safer for potential consumption.
Preclinical testing begins to determine safety for human trials and Investigational New Drug application will be submitted and clinical trials for the drug begin.