The Eye Hospital on the HRI site was built in 2003 and is the home of the Trust’s award winning ophthalmology services. The service is recognised for the quality of its teaching and research and is a strong leader in terms of driving forward innovative ways of working.

Our experienced clinical research team is involved in eye and vision research.  The core team is led by our Principal Investigators, Miss Louise Downey and Mr Mark Costen.  Our team comprises of two Senior Research Nurses, Sally Cooper and Julia Twigger.  Research Nurse Assistant, Yvonne Waudby, Clinical Trials Co-ordinator, Angela Atkinson. Other essential members of the team are our Co-Investigators, Optometrists, Imaging Technicians, and Nurse Injectors.

Current Research

A large proportion of our research involves looking at different treatments for the back of the eye, (the retina) within a randomised clinical trials format. Currently the majority of treatments involve regular injections into the back of the eye. These drugs injected block the action of a molecule known as VEGF and other related molecules. Anti-VEGF therapy has become the standard of care for a host of intraocular retinal vascular diseases. The advent of these medications since 2007 has brought about the ability to restore and maintain vision.

Many of the trials we are involved in look at different regimens and strengths of drugs, alongside next generation drugs that address the shortcomings of current treatments. With the available anti-VEGF agents, current research is continuing to improve upon optimal treatment delivery.

There is currently no treatment for the dry form of macular degeneration, however, our research department is currently being considered as an investigative site for any future studies, including phase III treatments.

We have a good track record in running Randomised Controlled Trials, investigating new drugs before they are available for routine NHS practice. This has enabled early treatments access for our patients that would otherwise have had less effective treatment.

We have a good track record of recruiting to time and target for the studies we have undertaken since 2015.

We also work in collaboration with other Medical Specialities within HUTH to provide essential Ophthalmic assessments for randomised controlled trial protocols then conduct testing new therapies e.g. for diabetes and oncology.


The Orthoptic service is involved in a number of paediatric multicentre studies primarily related to childhood vision development and childhood squints. The services has members of the team interested in the development and measurement of stereo-acuity (3d vision), the development and outcome of vision screening services and wider service development and are regular contributors to professional conferences alongside the Paediatric Ophthalmology team.

Funding from research has provided much needed equipment used by the NHS Ophthalmic service, including a Microperimeter, Reichert tonometry, and corneal cross-linking.

Our pioneering work is shared in Ophthalmic Journals internationally. Publications in the last 12 months = 9

Our Mission

  • To continue to develop our research activity within Ophthalmology and embed it into everyday practice.
  • To promote current treatments, education and innovation for clinical care for ophthalmology.
  • To make research common practice, that is valued by all and available to all.
  • To value patients and their contribution to clinical research and provide safe, innovative quality care.
  • To be role models within Ophthalmology and promoting and sharing best practice when caring for patients with ophthalmological conditions.

Contact Details

Academic Department of Ophthalmology, Hull and East Yorkshire Eye Hospital, Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Senior Research Nurses – Sally Cooper, Julia Twigger

Research Nurse Assistant – Yvonne Waudby

Clinical Trials Co-ordinator – Angela Atkinson

Telephone – 01482 605318