NEWS | January 5, 2009

Werner receives prestigious Pisart Vision Award

(SACRAMENTO, Calif.)

John S. Werner, professor in the UC Davis Health System Eye Center, has received the Lighthouse International Pisart Vision Award, a major U.S. prize honoring people who have made an extraordinary contribution to the prevention, cure or treatment of severe vision impairment or blindness.

Lighthouse International, founded in 1905, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving vision and to helping people overcome the challenges of vision loss. The Pisart Vision Award was established in 1981 and is partially funded by a bequest from Georgette Pisart, a longtime Lighthouse volunteer. The award includes a prize of $35,000 and a glass sculpture created by a blind individual.

Werner is one of the world’s leading authorities in vision science and is especially well-known for his studies describing fundamental changes associated with aging and their optical and neural bases. His studies provide a platform from which to understand why aging of vision occurs. In addition to authoring numerous research publications in the field, Werner has written popular articles for the layperson, including a biography of Claude Monet’s eye, which describes his vision changes associated with cataracts and how they affected his painting.

Werner is a professor of ophthalmology and vision science, and neurobiology, physiology and behavior. A banquet honoring him was held in New York City on Dec. 16. Previous award winners have included Paul Sieving, director of the National Eye Institute; David Cogan of Harvard University; and Louise Sloan of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Werner is the first UC Davis faculty member to receive this award.


 

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