Boston University School of Medicine
Sayon Roy received his PhD from Boston University and completed his postdoctoral training at Schepens Eye Research Institute, Harvard Medical School, Harvard University. Roy is currently a professor of Medicine, Section of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Nutrition, and a professor of Ophthalmology at Boston University School of Medicine. Recognized as an expert in retinal vascular biology, Roy’s seminal work has identified several genes in the retina that are abnormally expressed in diabetic retinopathy. His pioneering work has led to novel gene modulatory techniques in retinal vascular cells using antisense oligonucleotides via intravitreal injection. Roy has received numerous awards including the American Diabetes Association Research Award for the commitment and dedication towards the fight against diabetes, the 2006 Mentor of the Year Award from Boston University, and the 2008 Innovative Award from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Research in Roy’s laboratory has been funded by several organizations including the National Eye Institute, NIH, National Medical Technology Testbed, American Diabetes Association, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International, Fight for Sight, Research to Prevent Blindness, and the Lions Organization. Roy currently serves as a chartered member of the NEI Study Section of the National Institutes of Health.
Vascular basement membrane thickening is a prominent and characteristic lesion of diabetic retinopathy. We have hypothesized that excess synthesis of basement membrane components occurring in diabetes is a critical pathogenetic event in the development of vascular basement membrane thickening and complications of diabetic retinopathy. Having shown that the mRNA level of basement membrane components fibronectin and collagen IV are increased in diabetic retinas, our laboratory plans to reduce the synthesis of these basement membrane components by using antisense oligonucleotides, a powerful molecular biological tool that offers a unique opportunity to down regulate specific gene expression.