UW Medicine Vision Science Center

The Vision Science Center is a university-wide consortium of faculty dedicated to understanding the visual system and its diseases.  The center, occupying 50,000 square feet of space at UW Medicine’s South Lake Union Campus, includes 19 faculty from three departments primarily engaged in vision science research.  Our vision scientists are committed to improving diagnosis, treatment, and ultimately finding cures for diseases of the eye and visual system. Collectively, the department published 140 papers during the 2022-2023 academic year. This year, our department rose to #3 in the nation in NIH funding among ophthalmology departments, and the University of Washington sits in the top 10 among universities in the US in funding from the National Eye Institute.

Vision Science Research Faculty & Associates

Ophthalmology Primary

Ethan Buhr, PhD
Research Associate Professor

Michelle Cabrera, MD            
Associate Professor

Jennifer Chao, MD, PhD
Gordon and Joan Bergy Associate Professor

Christopher Fortenbach, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor

Murray Johnstone, MD
Clinical Professor

Jim Kuchenbecher, PhD
Acting Instructor

Aaron Lee, MD, MSc
C. Dan and Irene Hunter Endowed Professor
Associate Professor

Cecilia Lee, MD, MS
Klorfine Family Endowed Chair

Mike Manookin, PhD
Associate Professor

Debarshi Mustafi, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor

Jay F. Neitz, PhD
Bishop Professor

Maureen E. Neitz, PhD
Ray H. Hill Endowed Chair

Vimal Pandiyan, PhD
Acting Instructor

Kathryn Pepple, MD, PhD
Associate Professor

Ram Sabesan, PhD
George and Martina Kren Associate Professor

Tueng T. Shen, MD, PhD
Graham and Brenda Siddall Endowed Chair

Russell Van Gelder, MD, PhD
Boyd K. Bucey Memorial Chair

Ruikang “Ricky” Wang, PhD
George and Martina Kren Endowed Chair in Ophthalmology

Yue Wu, PhD
Acting Instructor


Susan E. Brockerhoff, PhD
Professor, Biochemistry

John I. Clark, PhD
Professor, Biological Structure

Ione Fine, PhD
Professor, Psychology

Jim Hurley, PhD
Professor, Biochemistry

Dirk Keene, MD, PhD
Professor, Laboratory Medicine and Pathology

Thomas A. Reh, PhD
Professor, Biological Structure

Frederick M. Rieke, PhD
Professor, Physiology and Biophysics

Kathryn Scherpelz, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor, Laboratory Medicine and Pathology

Rachel Wong, PhD
Professor and Chair
Biological Structure

UW Department of Ophthalmology

908 Jefferson St.. Seattle, WA 98104 (academic offices)
Harborview Medical Center (mailing address)
Box 359608, 325 Ninth Avenue Seattle, WA 98104
Phone: 206.543.7250
Fax: 206.685.7055


For Patients

Graduate Medical Education