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School of Optometry and Vision Science


Available laboratory-based projects

Students interested in postgraduate study should contact one of the supervisors below who will provide assistance to appropriate candidates in applying for a doctoral scholarship.

PhD – Refractive development of the eye following preterm birth


Preterm birth can permanently interfere with normal development of the eye and visual system. We hypothesise that ‘myopia of prematurity’ results from premature exposure of the eye to visual signals which normally guide eye growth and emmetropisation. The aim is to advance our understanding of refractive development of the preterm eye by adopting and extending an established animal model of preterm growth and development.

Supervisors:

Dr John Phillips
Email: j.phillips@auckland.ac.nz

Dr Nicola Anstice
Email: n.anstice@xtra.co.nz

PhD – Refractive development of the cephalopod eye


Squid Eye

The cephalopod (squid & octopus) eye is remarkable in that it has a similar structure to our own vertebrate eye, despite having an invertebrate evolutionary history. The vertebrate eye has a complex retina which plays a major role in regulating eye growth and refractive development. However, cephalopods appear to function with only a single type of retinal neuron (rhabdomeric photoreceptors). This simpler retina provides a natural model to better understand the biological control of eye growth and emmetropisation.

Supervisors:

Dr John Phillips
Email: j.phillips@auckland.ac.nz

Philip Turnbull
Email: p.turnbull@auckland.ac.nz