Dr. Brian P. Brooks has been selected by the White House to receive the 2009 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). Dr. Brooks is a member of the NEI Intramural Research Program and is chief of the NEI Unit on Pediatric, Developmental and Genetic Ophthalmology.
The Presidential PECASE awards are the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on outstanding scientists and engineers beginning their independent careers. The award embodies the high priority placed by the government on maintaining the leadership position of the United States in science by producing outstanding researchers who will broadly advance science and the missions important to their agencies. As an award recipient, Dr. Brooks has demonstrated exceptional leadership potential at the frontiers of scientific knowledge. Eighty-five awardees were selected from ten federal agencies, including only twenty from the broad NIH research community of many thousands of scientists.
Dr. Brooks is being recognized for his research on the molecular genetics and developmental studies on uveal coloboma, a congenital ocular disease that accounts for about ten percent of childhood blindness. He is also involved in collaborative research projects on a number of inherited eye diseases, including Bardet-Biedl syndrome, mitochondrial disorders, and albinism. Dr. Brooks serves as principal investigator for the National Ophthalmic Disease Genotyping and Phenotyping Network (eyeGENE®) and as senior ophthalmic consultant for the NIH Undiagnosed Diseases Program. He also directs the Ophthalmic Genetics Clinic at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, D.C.