Our Providers

Peter Gouras, MD
  • Professor of Ophthalmology at CUMC
Peter Gouras, <span>MD</span>

Peter Gouras, M.D., Ph.D. is a clinician, researcher, surgeon and Professor of Ophthalmology at Columbia University Medical Center Harkness Eye Institute.

A pioneer in the transplantation of retinal pigment epithelial cells, Dr. Gouras is considered the father of retinal transplantation by his peers and students for his work in developing methodology related to retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cell transplantation.

The Gouras Lab is widely credited for developing the model used to stop the progression of the retinal degeneration in the RCS rat, a well-known model of retinitis pigmentosa.

His research interests involve anatomical and physiological studies of the retina and visual system, which includes electron microscopy and electrophysiology. He is a proponent who has emphasized translational research in which methodology and concepts from basic science can be applied to clinical problems.

Translating his research from bench to bedside, he performed the first human retinal cell transplant in 1994. His current research employs electron microscopy to study the effects of aging, genetics, and calorie restriction on a primate model of macular degeneration. Dr. Gouras continues to research the retina and investigate ways to treat other diseases in that area of the eye. 

Dr. Gouras is a graduate of Johns Hopkins where he received his medical degree and completed his internship. From Baltimore, Dr. Gouras proceeded directly into a career in eye research at the National Institutes of Health, part of the Public Health Service, first working in the Neurological Institute and the Division of Blindness.

Now a retired clinician whose focus is largely on research, Dr. Gouras was in clinical practice for over 20 years. His professional affiliations include service on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Cryonics Institute and The Institute for Neural Cryobiology.

    Education & Training

  • Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
  • Internship: Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD
  • Residency: National Institutes of Health

This provider does not accept new patients

Honors & Awards

  • 2009 ARVO Medal
  • 2003 Honorary Doctorate from the University of Athens, Greece


  • Gouras P, Brown K, Ivert L, Neuringer M. A novel melano-lysosome in the retinal epithelium of rhesus monkeys.Exp Eye Res. 2011 Dec;93(6):937-46.
  • Zernant J, Schubert C, Im KM, Burke T, Brown CM, Fishman GA, Tsang SH, Gouras P, Dean M, Allikmets R.Analysis of the ABCA4 gene by next-generation sequencing.Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2011 Oct 31;52(11):8479-87.
  • Gouras P. Color Vision. In: Kolb H, Fernandez E, Nelson R, editors. Webvision: The Organization of the Retina and Visual System [Internet]. Salt Lake City (UT): University of Utah Health Sciences Center; 2010
  • Topographic and age-related changes of the retinal epithelium and Bruch's membrane of rhesus monkeys. Gouras P, Ivert L, Neuringer M, Mattison JA. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2010 248(7):973
  • Bestrophin detected in the basal membrane of the retinal epithelium and drusen of monkeys with drusenoid maculopathy. Gouras P, Braun K, Ivert L, Neuringer M, Mattison JA. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 247(8):1051-6 2009.
  • Phenotypic features of patients with NR2E3 mutations. Pachydaki SI, Klaver CC, Barbazetto IA, Roy MS, Gouras P, Allikmets R, Yannuzzi LA. Arch Ophthalmol. 2009;127(1):71-5.
  • Mutations in NR2E3 can cause dominant or recessive retinal degenerations in the same family. Escher P, Gouras P, Roduit R, Tiab L, Bolay S, Delarive T, Chen S, Tsai CC, Hayashi M, Zernant J, Merriam JE, Mermod N, Allikmets R, Munier FL, Schorderet DF. Hum Mutat. 2009 Mar;30(3):342-51.
  • Drusenoid maculopathy in rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta): effects of age and gender. Gouras P, Ivert L, Landauer N, Mattison JA, Ingram DK, Neuringer M. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2008 Oct;246(10):1395-402. Epub 2008 Aug 16.
  • Drusenoid maculopathy in rhesus monkeys: autofluorescence, lipofuscin and drusen pathogenesis. Gouras P, Ivert L, Mattison JA, Ingram DK, Neuringer M. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2008 Oct;246(10):1403-11. Epub 2008 Aug 12.
  • Correction of the disease phenotype in the mouse model of Stargardt disease by lentiviral gene therapy. Kong J, Kim SR, Binley K, Pata I, Doi K, Mannik J, Zernant-Rajang J, Kan O, Iqball S, Naylor S, Sparrow JR, Gouras P, Allikmets R. Gene Ther. 2008 Oct;15(19):1311-20. Epub 2008