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David R. Williams, Ph.D.

Contact Information

Phone Numbers

Administrative: (585) 275-6049

Office: (585) 275-8672

Office: (585) 276-6070

Fax: (585) 271-3043

Fax: (585) 275-3480

Biography

Research

We use adaptive optics, the same technique used by astronomers to take clear pictures of the sky through the earth's turbulent atmosphere, to explore the organization and function of the retina and the optical and neural limits on human vision. Just as atmospheric turbulence distorts light arriving from distant stars, imperfections in the eye's cornea and lens distort light passing through the eye, causing blurred images to be formed on the retina.

With adaptive optics, which uses a Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensor to measure the eye's imperfections and a deformable mirror to correct them, we can correct most of the optical aberrations in the eye, providing the eye with the best image quality ever achieved. This means we can look into the eye and see the retina more clearly than was ever possible before, even allowing us to see individual cells in the living retina, but also that we can look out from the eye and see a much sharper view of the world than ever seen before. In addition to learning more about the retina, we use adaptive optics to examine the potential for improving vision by correcting the optical aberrations of the eye, and to probe the neural limits on human vision.

Credentials

Faculty Appointments

Education

1979
PhD | University of California, San Diego
Psychology

1976
MA | University of California, San Diego
Psychology

1975
BS | Denison University
Psychology

1980
Postdoctoral Research Associate | Bell Laboratories

Awards

2015
Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology Distinguished Service Award

2014
Member, National Academy of Sciences

2013
Edridge Green Medal, The Royal College of Ophthalmologists

2012
Champalimaud Vision Award

2012
Gold Fellow, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology

2009
Robert M. Boynton Lecture, OSA Fall Vision Meeting, University of Washington

2009
Silver Fellow, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology

2008
Rochester Business Journal Health Care Achievement Award for Innovation

2007
Bressler Prize, Jewish Guild for the Blind

2007
Honorary Doctor of Science, The State University of New York, State College of Optometry

2006
Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science

2006
Friedenwald Award, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology

2004
University of Rochester Center for Electronic Imaging Systems Technology Transfer Award

2004
Archie Mahan Prize, Optical Society of America

2003
Founders Award, Wavefront Congress, San Francisco, CA

2003
R&D 100 Award for the MEMS-based Adaptive Optics Phoropter, given by R&D Magazine

2001
Honorary Doctor of Science, Denison University

2001
Best of What's New Award in the Medical Technology category for the Zyoptix laser vision correction system

1998
Semifinalist for Discover Award for Technological Innovation

1998
Tillyer Medal, Optical Society of America

1997 - Present
William G. Allyn Professor of Medical Optics at the Institute of Optics, University of Rochester

1997 - 1998
John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship

1992 - Present
Fellow, Optical Society of America

1987 - 1988
University of Rochester Mentor Award, for excellence in teaching, research, and service to the University

1986
Distinguished Scientific Award for an Early Contribution to Psychology, American Psychological Association

1985 - 1990
National Eye Institute Research and Career Development Award

1979 - 1980
Bell Laboratories Postdoctoral Fellowship

1977
Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology Travel Fellowship

1976 - 1979
National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship

1974
Psychology Student Fellow, Denison University

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Patents

Title: Tunable Achromatizing Optical Apparatus, Methods, and Applications
U.S. Serial #: 14/054,962
Filed: Oct 16, 2013
Invented By: YingGeng, JenniferHunter, RobinSharma, YusufuSulai, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Imaging in an Eye
U.S. Serial #: 13/461,880
Filed: May 02, 2012
Invented By: AlfredoDubra, DanielGray, Jessica WolfingMorgan, DavidWilliams

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #:
Filed: Dec 17, 2009
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Method and Apparatus Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 12/145,265
Filed: Jun 24, 2008
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 12/145,264
Filed: Jun 24, 2008
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 12/145,302
Filed: Jun 24, 2008
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 12/145,345
Filed: Jun 24, 2008
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Structured Illumination for Imaging or Stationary and Non-Stationary, Fluorescent and Non-Fluorescent Objects
U.S. Serial #: 12/100,723
Filed: Apr 10, 2008
Invented By: JamesFienup, SapnaShroff, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Imaging in an Eye
U.S. Serial #: 11/798,902
Filed: May 17, 2007
Invented By: AlfredoDubra, DanielGray, Jessica WolfingMorgan, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 11/199,174
Filed: Aug 09, 2005
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 90/006,588
Filed: Apr 04, 2003
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 90/006,589
Filed: Apr 04, 2003
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 90/006,591
Filed: Apr 04, 2003
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 90/006,590
Filed: Apr 04, 2003
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Rapid, Automatic Measurement of the Eye's Wave Aberration
U.S. Serial #: 10/125,436
Filed: Apr 19, 2002
Invented By: JuanAragon, PabloArtal, HeidiHofer, PedroPrieto, BenjaminSinger, FernandoVargas, WilliamVaughn III, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 10/078,163
Filed: Feb 20, 2002
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Determination of Ocular Refraction from Wavefront Aberration Data and Design of Optimum Customized Correction
U.S. Serial #: 09/969,600
Filed: Oct 04, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams

Title: Determination of Ocular Refraction from Wavefront Aberration Data
U.S. Serial #: 04100159.3
Filed: Oct 04, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams

Title: Determine Ocular Refraction From Wavefront Aberration Data and Design of Optimum Customization Correction
U.S. Serial #: GB 01977449.6
Filed: Oct 04, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams

Title: Apparatus and Method for Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: 90110091
Filed: Apr 30, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: 10-2002-7013851
Filed: Apr 16, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: 010624/02
Filed: Apr 16, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: JP2001-579674
Filed: Apr 16, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: 01808692.6
Filed: Apr 16, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: 2,407,082
Filed: Apr 16, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: 200205202-5
Filed: Apr 16, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: 257042/01
Filed: Apr 16, 2001
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor With Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: 2002 02228-3
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor With Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: 2001-531013
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor With Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: 14354/01
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor With Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: CA 2388775
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor With Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: 10-2002-7004987
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor With Off-Axis
U.S. Serial #: 03 100735.7
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: 06101762.8
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: 06101763.7
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: DE00976606.4
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: FR00976606.4
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: ES00976606.4
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: GB 00976606.4
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: IT73324BE/2006
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: DE60032650.0-08
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: ES05008540.6
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: GB 05008540.6
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: IT68685BE/2007
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: FR05008540.6
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: DE60032528.8-08
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: FR05008541.4
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: IT68686BE/2007
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: ES05008541.4
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor with Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: GB 05008541.4
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Rapid, Automatic Measurement of the Eye's Wave Aberration
U.S. Serial #: 2001-531011
Filed: Oct 20, 2000
Invented By: JuanAragon, PabloArtal, HeidiHofer, PedroPrieto, BenjaminSinger, FernandoVargas, WilliamVaughn III, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 09/628,690
Filed: Jul 28, 2000
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Apparatus and Method for Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #: 09/559,643
Filed: Apr 28, 2000
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Rapid, Automatic Measurement of the Eye's Wave Aberration
U.S. Serial #: 09/533,809
Filed: Mar 24, 2000
Invented By: JuanAragon, PabloArtal, HeidiHofer, PedroPrieto, BenjaminSinger, FernandoVargas, WilliamVaughn III, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Wavefront Sensor With Off-Axis Illumination
U.S. Serial #: 09/422,338
Filed: Oct 21, 1999
Invented By: DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Rapid, Automatic Measurement of the Eye's Wave Aberration
U.S. Serial #: 09/421,892
Filed: Oct 21, 1999
Invented By: JuanAragon, PabloArtal, HeidiHofer, PedroPrieto, BenjaminSinger, FernandoVargas, WilliamVaughn III, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 09/346,309
Filed: Jul 02, 1999
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 09/071,794
Filed: May 04, 1998
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Apparatus for Improving Vision and Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 58062/98
Filed: Dec 23, 1997
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Apparatus for Improving Vision and Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 2275762
Filed: Dec 23, 1997
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Apparatus for Improving Vision and Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 10-529067
Filed: Dec 23, 1997
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Apparatus for Improving Vision and Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: DE97954229.7
Filed: Dec 23, 1997
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Apparatus for Improving Vision and Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: GB97954229.7
Filed: Dec 23, 1997
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Apparatus for Improving Vision and Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: FR97954229.7
Filed: Dec 23, 1997
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Method and Apparatus for Improving Vision and the Resolution of Retinal Images
U.S. Serial #: 08/772,977
Filed: Dec 23, 1996
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: General
U.S. Serial #:
Filed: Jan 01, 1899
Invented By: JunzhongLiang, DavidWilliams

Title: Legal Ref 687.00258A
U.S. Serial #:
Filed: Jan 01, 1899
Invented By: JuanAragon, PabloArtal, HeidiHofer, PedroPrieto, BenjaminSinger, FernandoVargas, WilliamVaughn III, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

Title: Apparatus and Method for Improving Vision and Retinal Imaging
U.S. Serial #:
Filed: Jan 01, 1899
Invented By: AntonioGuirao, DavidWilliams, GeunyoungYoon

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Publications

Journal Articles

2/2016
Sharma R, Williams DR, Palczewska G, Palczewski K, Hunter JJ. "Two-Photon Autofluorescence Imaging Reveals Cellular Structures Throughout the Retina of the Living Primate Eye." Investigative ophthalmology & visual science.. 2016 Feb 0; 57(2):632-46.

2/2016
Sharma R, Schwarz C, Williams DR, Palczewska G, Palczewski K, Hunter JJ. "In Vivo Two-Photon Fluorescence Kinetics of Primate Rods and Cones." Investigative ophthalmology & visual science.. 2016 Feb 0; 57(2):647-57.

10/2015
Song H, Rossi EA, Latchney L, Bessette A, Stone E, Hunter JJ, Williams DR, Chung M. "Cone and rod loss in Stargardt disease revealed by adaptive optics scanning light ophthalmoscopy." JAMA ophthalmology.. 2015 Oct 0; 133(10):1198-203.

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