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Eye Bank of Canada (Ontario Division)

Eye Bank Profile

Eye Bank Donations have steadily increased and we have now topped the 3,000 mark in number of eyes donated in one single year. Twelve hundred of these eyes were used directly for corneal transplantation and many of the other ones were used for clinical care including epikeratophakia, ophthalmic plastic surgery and scleral patch grafts. The remainder of the eyes have been used for research and teaching endeavors including a large number being utilized for resident and fellow surgical education.

The Eye Bank continues to move forward in its efforts to improve standards and we are International Associate Members of the Eye Banking Association of America. In the past year we have done a total revision of our donor screening form, making it more extensive to comply with the standards suggested by the Eye Banking Association of America and the Bureau of Biologics of the Department of Health and Welfare of Canada. This has resulted in some initial growing pains and difficulties due to the more extensive information required in the donor history. However, in general the formatting has been positively accepted as a step in the right direction towards improving medical standards of our Eye Bank. One more of our technicians is being certified by the Eye Banking Association of America.

In the area of research, we continue to look for better ways of preserving corneas for transplantation and we have published a paper looking at locally prepared corneal storage media. This initiative will not only improve on the available products, but will also result in a considerable cost savings to the Eye Bank and the University.

In summary, the Eye Bank has continued to progress in areas of promotion of eye donation, improvement of standards, education and scientific research. We look forward to continuing in all these areas with further improvements.

Dr. William Dixon

Director, Eye Bank of Canada (Ontario Division)

Eye Bank Service

Eye Bank Laboratory. Dr. William Dixon is Director of the University of Toronto's Eye Bank Laboratory, Dr. Charlotte Wedge is Co-Director and Linda Sharpen is the Eye Bank Manager. This laboratory not only provides corneas for all of Ontario for transplantation, but also performs important research in the area of Cornea and External Disease. The laboratory is currently working to develop new media and various other important research projects such as corneal preservation and wound healing. Funding is obtained from the Ministry of Health to support the Eye Bank. Peer reviewed funding supports ongoing research into areas related to Eye Banking and Corneal Preservation.

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