The Rizzolo Lab
Retinal degenerations are major causes of visual impairment, especially in aging and diabetic populations. My laboratory uses human embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells to study and treat retinal disease. The retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) separates photoreceptors from their blood supply in the choroid, and therefore, is responsible for their health. We demonstrated how RPE functions are regulated by interactions with the retina and the choroid. Our goal is to bioengineer a three-dimensional culture model that includes RPE and retinal neurons derived from human stem cells.
The Rizzolo Lab conducts research in both the biomedical field of with its study of retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) as well as educational research with its design of a "Clinically-Engaged Anatomy" curriculum.