January 2021
Volume 10, Issue 1
Open Access
Letters to the Editor  |   January 2021
The Clinician-Scientist in Vision Science: A Rare and Endangered Species
Author Affiliations
  • Rajesh C. Rao
    Departments of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences and Pathology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA. e-mail: rajeshr@med.umich.edu
Translational Vision Science & Technology January 2021, Vol.10, 30. doi:https://doi.org/10.1167/tvst.10.1.30
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      Rajesh C. Rao; The Clinician-Scientist in Vision Science: A Rare and Endangered Species. Trans. Vis. Sci. Tech. 2021;10(1):30. https://doi.org/10.1167/tvst.10.1.30.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

  • Supplements
I thank Dr. Van Gelder for his editorial1 on our recent article published in TVST.2 Dr. Van Gelder is one of the most accomplished physician–scientists in ophthalmology, and his stature and experience lend much-needed attention to the leaky clinician–scientist career pipeline. Although I agree with nearly every point in the editorial, I want to correct a statement in that piece regarding an exclusion in our study of clinician–scientists who obtained their second R01 (new or renewal) outside of the National Eye Institute (NEI). In fact, we did analyze second R01 grants awarded to clinician–scientists that were funded outside the NEI. Indeed, we found that, of those clinician–scientists who obtained a second R01, ∼10% obtained R01 grants funded from a non-NEI National Institutes of Health Institute or Center, such as the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and the National Cancer Institute. Our data highlight the diversity of scholarship conducted by R01-funded clinicians in ophthalmology and optometry. Our findings further suggest that future efforts supporting interdisciplinary efforts may be part of a strategy to sustain independent careers in vision research. 
Supported by grants from the National Eye Institute (R01EY030989 and K08EY026654 to RCR) and Research to Prevent Blindness (to University of Michigan Kellogg Eye Center and RCR). RCR received funding from the Beatrice & Reymont Paul Foundation, March Hoops to Beat Blindness, Taubman Institute, and Leonard G. Miller Endowed Professorship and Ophthalmic Research Fund at the Kellogg Eye Center. Additional support for this research was provided by Grossman, Elaine Sandman, Marek and Maria Spatz (endowed), Greenspon, Dunn, Avers, Boustikakis, Sweiden, and Terauchi research funds to RCR. 
Van Gelder RN . The clinician-scientist in vision science: a rare and endangered species. Transl Vis Sci Technol. 2020; 9(12): 33. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Liu EA, Wang SY, Rao RC. Sustaining independent careers in vision research: demographics and success in second R01 attainment among clinician–scientists from 1985 to 2019. Transl Vis Sci Technol. 2020; 9(12): 32. [CrossRef]

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