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Research areas

We conduct vision and eye research within a broad area in collaboration with Karolinska Institutet. Research closely linked to clinical practice is a prerequisite for future eye care. Within a short period of time the hospital can take part of new scientific knowledge, and the researcher gets in turn the opportunity to collect data from patients and feedback from services and wards at the hospital.

Our research groups are affiliated to the Division of Eye and Vision at the Department of Clinical Neuroscience at Karolinska Institutet. Marianne Bernadotte Center for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Dyslexia is a research center at KI with the aim of promoting and supporting research in pediatric eye care and dyslexia.

Cataract, pediatric eye diseases and anterior eye parts

This research group conducts research into cataract, but also studies paediatric eye diseases and glaucoma. It also focuses on the anterior eye parts, such as the eyelid, tear ducts, conjunctiva, cornea and lens, as well as the eye socket.

The group is led by Senior Consultant and researcher Stefan Löfgren and Senior Consultant and Professor Maria Kugelberg.

The group’s research deals mainly with

  • patient-perceived visual function and vision improvement following cataract surgery
  • the results of 15 years of paediatric cataract surgery
  • the effect of eye drops on contact lenses following paediatric cataract surgery
  • the use of home pressure measurement in cases of glaucoma
  • treatment of uveitis in children
  • free radicals as a cause of cataract and other eye diseases
  • ocular trauma caused by lasers
  • patient satisfaction following corneal transplantation
  • tear flow and symptoms before and after corrective tear duct surgery
  • dry eyes with an emphasis on pathophysiology and its clinical relevance.

Eye movements and vision

This research group works thematically within three areas:

  • paediatric ophthalmology
  • cerebral visual impairment
  • reading eye movements and reading and writing disorders.

The group is led by Senior Lecturer and Optician Tony Pansell.

The group’s research mainly involves

  • incidence and effects of brain injury on visual function and plasticity in very premature infants, and optic nerve abnormalities and metabolic eye diseases
  • ocular accommodation in children with albinism or cerebral palsy
  • functional visual problems, analytical methods and validation of rehabilitation methods in cases of traumatic brain injury, as well as methods development for evaluation of visual vertigo
  • early detection of dyslexia through eye tracking and artificial intelligence.


The aim of this research group is to develop novel neuroprotective measures to tackle degenerative processes in glaucoma using well-documented substances and gene therapy.

The group is led by Assistant Professor Pete Williams.

The group’s research deals mainly with

  • mitochondria, by using a variety of novel reporter mice, mitochondrial markers, and live/vital dyes to image and analyze mitochondria at ultra-high resolution in healthy, disease, and treated states
  • neuronal metabolism, by using targeted assays, targeted and enriched mass spectometry protocols, and high resolution untargeted metabolomics to identify novel disease pathways and candidate biomarkers in glaucoma
  • viral gene therapy, as it has been successful in a handful of rare, monogenic ophthalmic diseases. The group is expanding this work to develop gene therapies targeting common neurodegenerative pathways
  • neuroinflammation within the retina and optic nerve as it may be a critical pathogenic event in early glaucoma. Exploring microglia activation throughout the visual system in glaucoma.

Ocular oncology and pathology

This research group focuses on ocular tumors and is led by Consultant/Associate Professor Gustav Stålhammar and Senior Consultant/Professor Stefan Seregard.

The research is mainly focused on

  • development of novel prognostic tests for uveal melanoma
  • studies of factors that increase the risk of metastatic development in uveal melanoma
  • clinical trials with adjuvant treatment intended to decrease the metastatic risk
  • digitalisation and examination of tumor tissue with digital image analysis and artificial intelligence
  • validation studies of the international classification of Retinoblastoma
  • studies of other common tumors in eyelids and orbit, including basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma.

Physiological optics

This research group conducts research within fields related to physiological optics, as well as the structure and function of the eye.

The group is led by Senior Lecturer/Optician Rune Brautaset, also Head of Division of Eye and Vision.

The group’s research mainly involves

  • structural changes in the retinal due to multiple sclerosis (MS), brain damage and in prematurely born infants
  • development and evaluation of techniques for measuring ocular structure and function
  • visual ergonomics in relation to lighting, glare, visual displays and control room settings
  • contact lens optics and contact lens fitting
  • myopia control and myopia prevention
  • visual oculomotor training in individuals with binocular problems, brain damage and subjects with reading and writing disorders.


This research group focuses on retinal diseases.

The group is led by Senior Consultant/Adjunct Professor Anders Kvanta and researcher Helder André.

The group’s research mainly involves

  • gene therapy and stem cell-based therapy in macular degeneration
  • gene therapy in retinitis pigmentosa
  • transplantation of pancreatic islet cells to the eye in diabetes
  • imaging techniques in retinal diseases
  • clinical treatment research in retinal diseases.

Reviewer Research group leaders/St. Erik/KI

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