​​Stem Cell Translational Vision Science 

​Team Lead: ​Dr Irfan Khan, Assistant Professor

​​​Dr Irfan Khan, in collaboration with Professor Karim F. Damji​​ and his team at AKU's Department of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences, is developing protocols for the generation of photoreceptors and retinal ganglion cells. This research aims to explore the potential of stem cells sourced from various origins and optimize the transplantation dosage for ocular treatment. 

The prec​linical study aims to evaluate the safety and efficacy of these cells in revitalizing vision for individuals afflicted with retinal degenerative diseases and optic neuropathies. The ultimate goal is to bridge the gap between innovative research and practical clinical interventions, thereby o​ffering hope for restoring vision to those in need.

The specific objectives of this research are:

  • Developing a comprehensive protocol for the isolation, propagation, and characterization of human umbilical cord-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hUC-MSCs) with the objective of their clinical application.

  • Establishing disease models for various eye diseases to further understanding and facilitate research.

  • Investigating transcription regulators to manipulate the fate of MSCs in optic nerves, rod and con cells, and retinal cells.

  • Analyzing the regenerative potential of post-transplantation eyes through comprehensive structural, physical, functional, and molecular analysis.​​