ARVO Foundation Announces Winners of the Lewis Rudin Glaucoma Prize
Winners rocognized for outstanding scholarly article on glaucoma


Rockville, Md.The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) today announced the 2020 recipients of the Lewis Rudin Glaucoma Prize: Iqbal Ahmad, PhD and Pooja Teotia, PhD, of the University of Nebraska in Omaha, Neb. Funded by the May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation with support of his brother Jack Rudin via the ARVO Foundation, the award provides $30,000 in recognition of an outstanding scholarly article on glaucoma published in a peer-reviewed journal during the previous calendar year.

Established in 1995, the Lewis Rudin Glaucoma Prize was first awarded through the New York Academy of Medicine and has become a prestigious award within the glaucoma and ophthalmology communities. Intended to recognize and encourage exemplary research in the field of glaucoma, the award honors the memory of Lewis Rudin, a prominent real estate developer in New York City. The Lewis Rudin Glaucoma Prize was transferred to the ARVO Foundation in 2019.

2020 recipients, Ahmad and Teotia’s research and subsequent article focuses on the degeneration of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and the optic nerve, resulting in progressive, irreversible blindness. Their approach focused on the mechanisms by which RGCs are generated and kept healthy. Through their research, they were able to demonstrate the regeneration of the mTOR pathway — a central regulator of cellular metabolism, growth and proliferation in mammals — plays a key role in RGC development. This may be achieved via pharmaceuticals or by gene therapy, thus preventing vision loss.

“This award is a recognition by the community of the science we are pursuing to understand and treat glaucoma,” says Ahamad. “It helps us to perform at a higher level and draws attention to our work for recruitment of committed researchers and attracting funds for the glaucoma research.” Co-recipient Teotia echoes these sentiments, “I am embarking on the next phase of my career development as an independent scientist,” she says. “Such awards are vital for promotions, building experience, and successfully competing for research grants to expand the research trajectories by acquiring new knowledge and skills.”

To learn more about the Lewis Rudin Glaucoma Prize, visit ARVO’s website.

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The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) is the largest eye and vision research organization in the world. Members include approximately 10,000 eye and vision researchers from over 75 countries. ARVO advances research worldwide into understanding the visual system and preventing, treating and curing its disorders. Learn more at

Established in 2001, the ARVO Foundation for Eye Research raises funds through partnerships, grants and sponsorships to support ARVO’s world-class education and career development resources for eye and vision researchers of all stages of career and education. Learn more at

Media contact:

Erin Hering