Christine Wildsoet

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PhD, Dip Appl Sc (Optom), BSc (Hons), FAAO, FARVO, Professor in Optometry & Vision Science
Email: wildsoet AT berkeley DOT edu

I am an Australian-trained Optometrist with an honors degree in Pharmacology. I first became involved in myopia research with my PhD research undertaken under the mentorship of Professor Jack Pettigrew, Vision Touch Hearing Research Center, University of Queensland, Brisbane Australia. The title of my PhD thesis was "Retinal Control of Eye Growth and Refractive Error in the Chick".

After serving on the faculty member of the School of Optometry, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia for a number of years, I moved to the US, first to the New England College of Optometry in Boston (1996-1999), and later to University of California - Berkeley’s School of Optometry (2000-present).

Myopia and ocular growth regulation have remained the main focus of my research (both human- and animal-based), although I am also interested in intraocular pressure regulation, ocular therapeutics and ocular public health. I maintain research collaborations in the USA, Australia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Korea, UK, Canada and Spain.



Click link for list of talks and posters


  • 1975 Diploma of Applied Science (Optometry)
Queensland Institute of Technology (QIT)
Brisbane, Australia (current registration as optometrist)
  • 1983 Bachelor of Science (Honors in Pharmacology, 1st Class)
University of Queensland
Brisbane, Australia (awarded University of Queensland Medal for high achievement in BSc (Hons) program)
  • 1992 Doctor of Philosophy
University of Queensland
Brisbane, Australia

Academic Service

  • 1975-1998 School of Optometry
Queensland University of Technology
Brisbane, Australia
  • 1983 Department of Physiology and Pharmacology
University of Queensland
Brisbane, Australia (Tutor, part-time)
  • 1988 Brisbane College of Advanced Education
Brisbane, Australia (Lecturer, part-time),
  • 1993-96 Vision, Touch and Hearing Research Centre
University of Queensland (Research Associate (Honorary, Head of myopia research unit)
  • 1996 (Aug)-2000 New England College of Optometry (NECO)
Boston, USA
  • 2000-present School of Optometry
University of California
Berkeley, USA

Recent Grants

National Institutes of Health (USA) funded projects

  • 1999-2001 Emmetropization in the chick - Is the brain required?
(CF Wildsoet) - $332428 (direct costs)
  • 2002-2007 Is retinal processing the key to emmetropization?
(CF Wildsoet - $278547 total costs, year 1)
  • 2002-2003 Cell and Molecular Biology of Ocular Disease
(JG Flannery, S Miller, SMJ Fleisig, CF Wildsoet; ($575,622)

Other Funding Sources & Projects

  • 1998 NECO: Diurnal IOP rhythms - Could altered rhythmicity contribute to excessive eye enlargement in human myopia? (C Scott, CF Wildsoet).
  • 1999 NECO: Do idiopathic nystagmus subjects show evidence for meridional emmetropization? (R Held, C Wildsoet, E Weissberg)
  • 2000 UC-Berkeley Junior Faculty Research Grant: Chromatic aberration – does it provide directional information about defocus for emmetropization?
  • 2000 UC-Berkeley Research Enabling Grant: The mechanism underlying choroidal blood flow changes during experimental emmetropization in the chick and their relationship to choroidal thickness changes.
  • 2000 UC-Berkeley Junior Faculty Research Grant: Anisomyopes – A potential source of new clues to how myopia (short-sightedness) develops in humans?
  • 2001 UC-Berkeley Research Enabling Grant: Albino chickens – Do they represent an adequate model for studying emmmetropization in human albinism?
  • 2001 Pacific Rim Research Program: Diurnal IOP and axial growth rhythms – Do they hold the key to the excessive eye enlargement that underlies myopia (shortsightedness)?
  • 2001 Hellman Grant: The how and why of ocular growth regulation: Some lessons from the chick and their significance for human myopia (short-sightedness).
  • 2001 UC-Berkeley Faculty Research Grant: Albino chickens: A new model for studying refractive error abnormalities in human albinism.
  • 2002 UC-Berkeley Junior Faculty Research Grant: The role of sharp vision in the regulation of eye growth and focussing errors in young eyes – A study using young chicks
  • 2002 UC-Berkeley Teaching Grant: The establishment of an archived electronic collection of teaching material.
  • 2002 UC-Berkeley Faculty Research Grant: How accurate is accommodation through bifocal soft contact lenses?
  • 2002 Spanish Ministry of Science & Technology: Role of ocular aberrations in the development and compensation of refractive errors. (collaborative grant, PI: Susan Marcos).

Professional Activities

  • Organizer of special symposium: Myopia: New insights from basic sciences and clinical investigation. American Academy of Optometry – International meeting, Madrid, Spain, April 7-9, 2000.
  • Organizer of special mini-symposium: The choroid: More than just a filler layer of blood vessels in the eye. Association for Research in Vision & Ophthalmology meeting, Fort Lauderdale, April 30-May 5, 2000.
  • ARVO programming committee: 1998-2000 (chair of Anatomy Section, 2000)
  • International organizing committee member, International Conference on Myopia – Hong Kong, November 10-14, 2002.
  • Organizer of special mini-symposium: Accommodation & Refractive Error, Fall Vision Meeting, Tuscan, October 2003.


University of California, Berkeley

  • General Pharmacology (OPT126, OD program)
  • Ocular Pharmacology (OPT136, OD program)
  • Clinical teaching (summer, OD program)
  • Optometry 100 series (Special lectures)
  • Vision Science 136 (Special lectures)

Continuing education (1997-present)

  • Boston , 1997 American Academy of Optometry - Fall Education Meeting. Steroids vs. NSAIDs, Glaucoma Medications.
  • Boston , 1998 American Academy of Optometry - Fall Education Meeting. Management of the dry eye patient - Multi-factorial problems call for multi-faceted treatments.
  • Boston, 1999 New England College of Optometry - CE therapeutics program. The pharmacology of glaucoma therapy.
  • Berkeley, 2002 Berkeley November Practicum. Systemic medications related to eye disease.
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