NIH R21 awarded to Dr. Hui Wang

Dr. Hui Wang of the CPB department has received an award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to fund his research on newt tissue regeneration. This research has been a collaborative effort with Dr. Katia Del Rio-Tsonis of the biology department.

An animated image of a microscopeWith over $388,000 from the NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Award (R21), Dr. Wang has been able to, for the first time, non-invasively acquire high-quality images that display the process of lens regeneration with optical coherence tomography (OCT).

By advancing the imaging technology, they will be able to reveal the detailed process of lens regeneration in newts, including lens fiber differentiation, lens vesicle formation, changes in iris vasculature and more. 

While newts and humans may seem to have very few things in common, this research is important to public health and the mission of NIH because it provides insight into the process of lens regeneration. In turn, Dr. Wang and the rest of the team are able to develop technologies that will enhance our knowledge on potential therapies for degenerative conditions, including eye tissues. 

For more information on the research project, visit the NIH project page for "In vivo imaging of newt lens regeneration: Novel molecular, cellular and functional insights"

By Jenna Calderón, CEC Reporter