Usha Chakravarthy is the Professor of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences in The Institute for Ophthalmology and Vision Science at The Queen’s University of Belfast and is consultant in the Ophthalmic Division in the Royal Hospitals Belfast. The Institute of Vision Sciences is a state of the art facility for research into ocular disorders. Three main themes constitute the Institutes research portfolio. These include retinal vascular diseases, neural regeneration and repair and clinical studies.
Professor Chakravarthy leads the clinical studies group. Her principal research interest lie in understanding retinal and choroidal vascular diseases as well as degenerative aging changes contributing to sight loss in older adults. She is recognised internationally for her studies on age-related macular degeneration, its pathogenesis, key risk factors and clinical management. She has acted as the chief investigator in multicentre clinical trials and studies and currently is the lead investigator for the HTA funded IVAN clinical trial on alternative drug treatments for exudative age-related macular degeneration. Her international collaborations span many continents. Notably she is involved in large scale population based studies of disease phenotyping which also seeks to identify the important risk factors for sight loss in older people in the Indian subcontinent. Her grant portfolio includes funding from the VIth framework in Europe, the Wellcome Trust, HTA, MRC and a number of national and international charities.
She is a member of the scientific advisory boards of the the AMD Alliance International, the Medical Research Council of the UK’s College of Experts, the scientific panel of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists of the UK, the Deutsche Forschung Gemainshaft, The Topic selection panel for NICE and several other national and international scientific organisations. She has published extensively in peer-reviewed journals and books.