Dry eye is one of the most common of all eye conditions. Millions of people are estimated to have dry eye. In people with dry eye, the eye produces fewer or low quality tears and is unable to keep its surface lubricated and comfortable. Although more often reported by the elderly, dry eye can occur at any age. Many things can cause the condition, including the environment, medications, reduced blinking, and some immunosuppressive diseases. Whereas there are various approaches to relieve the symptoms, i.e., lubricating or tear production drops or insertion of plugs, funding is needed for more research into the etiology and treatment of dry eye.
At Academy 2010 San Francisco, the Foundation received a generous $25,000 donation from Drs. Donald Korb and Joan Exford to establish a research and leadership fund in the area of dry eye. The AAOF Celebration Luncheon in San Francisco, provided a perfect backdrop for Dr. Korb to announce this lead gift to the 250 attendees.
The Korb-Exford Dry Eye Career Development Grant is designed to support an individual to further their knowledge in the broad area of dry eye. The individual must possess an OD or relevant graduate degree and must be a member of the American Academy of Optometry, as a student, candidate, or Fellow at the time of applying for the award. The successful individual must have a demonstrable interest in either a clinical or basic science area of dry eye and may be a clinician, educator, researcher, or student.
The plan for the use of the $25,000 stipend must be submitted within the application. The maximum time to initiate the use of the stipend is one year from the announcement of the Award.
Note: This grant is not designed to merely extend a period of study or employment. Funds from this award may not be used to purchase major equipment for an institution for dry eye research.