National Eye Institute Grants $665,500 to Marshall B. Ketchum University to Study Convergence Insufficiency

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(L to R) Six of the seven-
member MBKU study team
are Huang, Cotter, Chu,
Borsting, Barnhardt, and Parker.


FULLERTON, Calif.—The National Eye Institute of the National Institutes of Health has issued a $665,500 grant to researchers at Marshall B. Ketchum University (MBKU) to study the relationship between the childhood vision condition, convergence insufficiency, and reading performance. The grant will fund the Convergence Insufficiency Treatment Trial—Attention and Reading Trial (CITT-ART), a national multi-center clinical trial that involves optometry, ophthalmology, psychiatry and education in evaluating how this eye-teaming problem impacts a child’s attention and reading performance.

MBKU is one of eight locations in the U.S. participating in the clinical trial. The MBKU team consists of: professors Susan A. Cotter, OD, MS, and Eric J. Borsting, OD, MSEd; associate professors Carmen N. Barnhardt, OD, MSEd, and Raymond H. Chu, OD, MS; assistant professors Angela M. Chen, OD, MS, and Kristine Huang, OD, MPH; and research study coordinator Sue Parker. Cotter and Borsting also serve on the CITT-ART executive committee.

“Convergence insufficiency is a common vision disorder in which the eyes have a tendency to drift outward when reading or doing close work,” said Cotter, principal investigator of the study at MBKU. “Unfortunately, it is often associated with poor reading performance and attention problems. This is the first large-scale randomized clinical trial to address this issue. Positive findings could lead to new therapies for some children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and reading problems. We are very excited that the National Eye Institute has funded our project and look forward to enrolling children into the study in the fall.”