Scholarship Recipients

"Our Scholarship Recipients advance our understanding of vitreoretinal disease with a goal of improving patient care.."  -Cynthia Toth

Shunsuke Kubota, MD, PhD,

was awarded the inaugural Robert Machemer Foundation Vitreoretinal Scholarship in 2013. Dr. Kubota, received his MD from Kitasato University School of Medicine, Japan and his PhD from Keio University Graduate School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan and is a vitreoretinal research fellow at Washington St. Louis, mentored by Raj Apte, MD, PhD.  Dr. Kubota studied the role of Sirt1 in age–related macular degeneration.

Lin JB, Kubota S, Ban N, Yoshida M, Santeford A, Sene A, Nakamura R, Zapata N, Kubota M, Tsubota K Yoshino J, Imai S, Apte RS.  NAMPT-Mediated NAD(+) Biosynthesis Is Essential for Vision In Mice. Cell Rep. 2016 Sep 27;17(1):69-85. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2016.08.073. LINK

Yuji Ito, MD, PhD

was awarded the second Robert Machemer Vitreoretinal Fellowship in 2014. Dr. Ito received his PhD in 2007 from Oita Medical University and his MD in 2001 also from Oita University. Dr. Ito was at the Cole Eye Institute of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and his project was "Intraoperative and Perioperative Analysis of Macular Hole Architectural Features and the Impact on Postoperative Functional and Anatomic Outcomes" mentored by Justis P. Ehlers MD.

Factors associated with persistent subfoveal fluid and complete macular hole closure in the PIONEER study.

Ehlers JP, Itoh Y, Xu LT, Kaiser PK, Singh RP, Srivastava SK. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2014 Dec 18;56(2):1141-6. doi: 10.1167/iovs.14-15765. LINK

Itoh Y, Vasanji A, Ehlers JP. Volumetric ellipsoid zone mapping for enhanced visualisation of outer retinal integrity with optical coherence tomography.

Br J Ophthalmol. 2016 Mar;100(3):295-9. doi: 10.1136/bjophthalmol-2015-307105. LINK


Retina. 2016 Dec;36(12):2290-2296. LINK

Itoh YSrivastava SKEhlers JP.Management of foveal adhesion of a dexamethasone implant. Acta Ophthalmol. 2016 Aug;94(5):e376-7. doi: 10.1111/aos.12853. Epub 2015 Oct 7. LINK

Itoh Y, Petkovsek D, Kaiser PK, Singh RP, Ehlers JP. Optical Coherence Tomography Features in Diabetic Macular Edema and the Impact on Anti-VEGF Response. Ophthalmic Surg Lasers Imaging Retina. 2016 Oct 1;47(10):908-913. doi: 10.3928/23258160-20161004-03. LINK

Shoji Notomi, MD, PhD

was awarded the Robert Machemer Vitreoretinal Fellowship in 2015. Dr. Notomi received his MD and subsequently his PhD in Ophthalmology from Kyushu University Hospital in Japan. Dr. Notomi's vitreoretinal research project was titles "The Role of Autophagy in Age-related Macular Degeneration" under the mentorship of Demetrios Vavvas at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. 

Notomi S, Ishihara K, Efstathiou NE, et al. Genetic LAMP2 deficiency accelerates the age-associated formation of basal laminar deposits in the retina. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2019;116(47):23724-23734. doi:10.1073/pnas.1906643116  LINK

James Anthony Stefater, III, MD, PhD

was awarded the Robert Machemer Vitreoretinal Fellowship for 2017. Dr. Stefater received his MD and his PhD in Molecular and Developmental Biology through the Medical Scientist Training Program at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, Ohio. He was an ophthalmology resident at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Harvard Medical School. Dr. Stefater’s vitreoretinal research project is titled: “Development of a novel post-operative intraocular retinal tamponade agent" under the mentorship of Dean Eliott at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary.

Michelle Peng, MD

was awarded the Robert Machemer Vitreoretinal Fellowship for 2018, under the mentorship of Drs. Mike Jumper and Dan Schwartz for her vitreoretinal research project entitled "Machine Vision-Based Biomarkers of Age Related Macular Degeneration Progression".

Ananth Sastry, MD

was awarded the Robert Machemer Vitreoretinal Fellowship for 2019, under the mentorship of Dr. Lejla Vajzovic for his vitreoretinal research project entitled "Comparison of subretinal bleb volumes created with ab-externo and ab-interno approaches using microscope intergrated optical coherence tomography".

Elizabeth Rossin, MD, PhD

has been awarded the Robert Machemer Vitreoretinal Fellowship for 2020, under the mentorship of Dr. Leo Kim for her vitreoretinal research project entitled "Characterizing proliferative vitreoretinopathy membranes using single cell RNA Sequencing".