Jayakrishna Ambati, MD
University of Kentucky, Lexington, Ky.
Dr. Ambati’s research focuses on advancing a treatment for age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in the world.
Jayakrishna Ambati, MD, is Professor and Vice Chair of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Professor of Physiology and the Dr. E. Vernon & Eloise C. Smith Endowed Chair, University of Kentucky, Lexington.
Dr. Ambati’s laboratory studies angiogenesis and cell death in age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The laboratory’s goal is to elucidate molecular mechanisms that fundamentally regulate vascular growth in normal and diseased states in the eye.
Dr. Ambati’s laboratory was the first to demonstrate the presence of in situ complement activation in the retina and choroid of patients with AMD. His team showed that complement activation triggers the angiogenic switch that transforms the disease state from an atrophic to a neovascular phenotype.
This observation resulted in more than a dozen pharmaceutical/biotech companies engaging in pre-clinical/Phase I clinical trials of complement inhibitors in AMD. New drug development research is now exploring the role of inflammatory and immunologic mediators in the development of AMD and its progression to choroidal neovascularization.
Dr. Ambati has received numerous national and international awards for his work. He was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and The American Society for Clinical Investigation and was the first ophthalmologist to be elected to The Association of American Physicians.
He earned his medical degree from SUNY Health Science Center at Brooklyn and completed retina fellowships at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary of Harvard Medical School, Boston.