Office of the Scientific Director

For inquiries regarding fellowships, internships, and other training opportunities, please contact Dr. Cesar Perez-Gonzalez,

The Office of the Scientific Director regrets that we cannot diagnose diseases, offer specific treatment recommendations, or provide physician referrals. Please consult a medical professional about your health condition. The National Eye Institute’s Office of Science Communications, Public Liaison and Education responds directly to requests for information on eye diseases and vision research. They can be contacted by phone at (301) 496-5248 or by email at

The Office of the Scientific Director (OSD) supports basic and clinical research within the Division of Intramural Research (DIR) that is carried out by over 150 researchers (investigators, staff scientists and clinicians, and scientific support staff) in various research disciplines. The NEI intramural program also provides training for about 120 fellows and students. In addition, the OSD oversees several shared resources that include a genetic engineering facility, histopathology services, a biological imaging core, a visual function core, as well as veterinary services.

Examples of research carried in DIR include:

  • role of growth factors in angiogenesis and neuroprotection in ocular diseases
  • pilot clinical trials
  • CNS reward circuits that control behavior
  • structure and function of genes and proteins with key roles in normal, aging and diseased eye
  • genetically engineered models for human eye disease
  • nerve cell communications that transmit visual information across the retina
  • biochemistry of the visual cycle
  • genetic susceptibility for AMD and diabetic retinopathy
  • genetic defects and pathways of retinal degeneration
  • genetic epidemiology
  • genetic origins of inherited ophthalmic diseases
  • childhood blinding diseases and inheritance
  • neuronal glial Interactions in retinal disease
  • animal models of inflammatory disease
  • inflammatory mechanisms in eye disease
  • physiology of the RPE and iPS cell-derived retinal pigment epithelia
  • protection of retinal neurons against elevated intraocular pressure in glaucoma
  • lipid oxydation in the retina and the RPE
  • gene therapeutics to treat X-linked retinoschisis, retinitis pigmentosa, and macular degeneration

More information on the laboratories, investigators, and shared facilities

Name Title E-mail Phone (301)
Sheldon Miller, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Searchexternal link
Scientific Director 451-6763
David Schneeweis, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Searchexternal link
Deputy Scientific Director 451-6763
Cesar Perez-Gonzalez, Ph.D.
PubMed Author Searchexternal link
Scientific Program Administrator 451-6763
Mica Gordon Intramural Administrative Specialist 451-6763
Fred Manuel Intramural Program Coordinator 443-9408
Last Reviewed: 
November 2014