What We Do

The OTERO program research teams aim to restore, maintain or enhance the functions of the eye through regenerative medicine-based technologies.

A multidisciplinary approach

Our teams include engineers, scientists and clinicians. What brings us together is our strong interest in regenerative therapies and the intense  motivation to improve the quality of life of the vision impaired. The combined expertise and creativity of these teams thrive in an exciting and collaborative environment.

Innovative use of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine

We are leveraging the advances in tissue engineering and cellular therapy to improve the health and quality of life of the vision impaired. We believe that advances in the sciences related to other regenerative medicine-based applications can be adapted to vision-related needs, thus expediting the opportunities to treat vision impairment.

Fast translation from research bench to patient

We aim at providing a seamless transition of our research results to clinical therapies which will directly benefit the patient. The team is vertically integrated so that the movement of technologies from the laboratory to clinical use is expedited.

Motivation and enthusiasm

We know that the number of people with vision impairment is growing every day. We know that vision impairment adversely affects mobility, independence, employment and the quality of life. Vision impairment results in loss of valuable potential. We strongly believe in making a difference through research to improve quality of lives.

2016 Call for Applications - Deadline August 15, 2016

2015-1026 OTERO GRANT APPLICATION FORMAT:/sites/default/files/u30/OTERO%202015.pdf



The OTERO program is a postdoctoral research program where each fellow studies under co-investigators, one of whom is a clinician who specializes in ophthalmology, and the other investigator is a scientist that is a leader in regenerative medicine technologies such as tissue engineering or cellular therapy.

Started in January 2010, this program has brought together researchers from a variety of fields to work on major vision problems such as:

  • Macular disease
  • Glaucoma
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Optic nerve disorders
  • Corneal scarring
  • Ocular trauma

Past OTERO Program

Current OTERO programs

Watch the Interviews

OTERO in researchers’ own words:

“OTERO renders me a precious opportunity to conduct the interdisciplinary research in materials science, stem cells and clinical medicine in Ophthalmology."

OTERO means a great opportunity for me, being a materials scientist, to take a professional training in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, especially hands-on experience in stem cells-related research. All of these are totally different from my previous professional life. It not only broadens my research ground, but gives me confidence in conjugating materials science and cornea regeneration as well. It is significant for my future research and academic career.”
- Dr. Jian Wu

“The research program supported by OTERO is a great chance for me to pursue not only my research interests, but also to be able to help or prevent people blinded due to the central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO).”
- Dr. Jongsick Kim

"OTERO gave me a new paradigm for research. I am interested, as a biomaterial scientist, to discover the most effective applications for my research. OTERO helped me thus connect with experts in Ophthalmology. The program gives me also the opportunity to help people who suffer from eye diseases, something I did not think about before becoming an OTERO Fellow."
- Dr. Daewon Park

"I was interested in the OTERO program because I felt it would be an opportunity to immerse myself in a new field and develop skills that will make me a more well-rounded researcher. It is very exciting to be performing research with experts in bioengineering and ophthalmology and I am constantly being challenged to improve my understanding of both through this fellowship. The OTERO program has exposed me to many aspects of clinical ophthalmology that most engineers do not see and I look forward to building my career in this field upon the foundation that this fellowship has given me."
- Dr. Morgan DiLeo