Carol B. Toris

Carol B. A. Toris
Curriculum Vitae

Ph.D. 1990, University of Minnesota
Major Interest: Physiology of the Visual System
Specialty: Mechanisms regulating the pressure and fluid dynamics in the eye

The Glaucoma Research Laboratory studies the production and drainage of aqueous humor in the eye. These processes are important because the dynamics of this fluid maintains a healthy intraocular pressure. When the intraocular pressure becomes elevated, there is increased risk of glaucomatous damage to the optic nerve. Such damage is irreversible and blindness is too often the final result. A noninvasive fluorophotometric method is used to study ocular fluid dynamics in human volunteers. We have investigated the effects on the eye of aging, various pathological states (including diabetes, pigmentary dispersion syndrome, exfoliation syndrome and ocular hypertension), new therapeutic agents and combinations of therapeutic treatments. We also are involved in phase III and IV clinical trials of new glaucoma medications.

When research cannot be done or answers cannot be found in human volunteers, we turn to animal models. In animals with elevated intraocular pressure, we are determining the mechanism by which experimental drugs or filtering devices reduce this pressure. These are necessary preclinical studies. One day some of the drugs and devices tested may be entered into phase III clinical trials and may develop into clinically useful glaucoma treatments.

Recently we have begun to study aqueous humor dynamics and intraocular pressure in mice. The small size of the eye makes these studies challenging. However, the benefits would be enormous as this will open up research in the area of the genetics of glaucoma.

Students in this lab learn to evaluate changes in ocular aqueous production and drainage and to measure blood flow rates in the various ocular tissues under strictly controlled conditions. Students become involved in all aspects of clinical as well as animal research.

 Toris figure

Recent publications:

  1. Harms NV, Toris CB. Current status of unoprostone for the management of glaucoma and the future of its use in the treatment of retinal disease. Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2013 Jan;14(1):105-13. doi: 10.1517/14656566.2013.748038. Epub 2012 Nov 30. PMID: 23199345
  2. Gulati V, Fan S, Maslonka M, Gangahar C, Toris CB, Diurnal and Nocturnal Variations in Aqueous Humor Dynamics of Patients with Ocular Hypertension on Medical Therapy. Arch Ophthalmol. 2012 Feb 13. [Epub ahead of print]   PMID: 22332206
  3. Camras LJ, Yuan F, Fan S, Samuelson TW, Ahmed IK, Schieber AT, Toris CB. A Novel Schlemm’s Canal Scaffold Increases Outflow Facility in a Human Anterior Segment Perfusion Model. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2012 Sep 12;53(10):6115-21.  PMID: 22893672
  4. Gulati V, Fan S, Hays CL, Samuelson TW, Ahmed I, Toris CB. A Novel 8-mm Schlemm’s Canal Scaffold Reduces Outflow Resistance in a Human Anterior Segment Perfusion Model. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2013;54:000–000. DOI:10.1167/iovs.12-11373 PMID: 23372057
  5. Gulati V, Pahuja P, Fan S, Toris CB. An Experimental Steroid Responsive Model of Ocular Inflammation in Rabbits using an SLT Frequency Doubled Q Switched Nd: YAG Laser. J. Ocular Pharm Therap, 2013, accepted. PMID: 23600959