NEI Audacious Goals Initiative

NEI Audacious Goals Initiative…restoring vision through regeneration of the retina

The Audacious Goals Initiative (AGI) is an effort by the National Eye Institute to push the boundaries of vision science. By facilitating cross-disciplinary research, the AGI is tackling the most devastating and difficult-to-treat eye diseases.


Joshua R. Sanes (Harvard) kicked off the AGI Seminar Series in Neuroregeneration on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Md., Nov. 2, 2015, in Lipsett Amphitheater (Building 10). View archived video.

AGI Projects

Imaging Projects: Five bold projects will develop new technology to noninvasively image cells of the eye in unprecedented detail. Read more.

AGI Events and Reports

Reconnecting Neurons in the Visual System panel discussion, October 16, 2015, Society for Neuroscience annual meeting, Chicago. View details.

About the Initiative

The NEI AGI is catalyzing research that will enable the restoration of vision through regeneration of the retina. The central goal is to replace cells of the retina that have been damaged by disease or injury and to restore their connections to the visual centers of the brain. Through strategic research funding, the NEI is enlisting dynamic scientists and teams who are developing the necessary knowledge and technology to make the goal a reality. Read more about the AGI.

About the Goal

The NEI audacious goal is to regenerate neurons and neural connections in the eye and visual system. The NEI AGI is targeting the photoreceptors and retinal ganglion cells. Photoreceptors—often called rods and cones—are cells in the retina that when stimulated by light generate signals the brain perceives as images. The retinal ganglion cells carry the signals from the photoreceptors to the brain. Read more about the audacious goal.

Funding Opportunities

NEI Audacious Goal Initiative: Discovery-based Science to Identify Factors Influencing Neural Regeneration in the Visual System (U01); RFA-EY-15-002

Program Director: Lisa Neuhold, Ph.D. (

More AGI funding opportunities

Last Reviewed: 
November 2015