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Home » National Eye Institute 40th Anniversary

National Eye Institute 40th Anniversary

In 2009, we mark the 40th anniversary of the National Eye Institute (NIH) with a year-long celebration that includes scientific symposia and other commemorative events. NEI was established on August 16, 1968 when President Lyndon B. Johnson signed Public Law 90-489. The new NIH institute was the first government organization solely dedicated to research on human visual diseases and disorders. NEI officially began operations on December 26, 1968, and the National Advisory Eye Council met for the first time on April 3, 1969. Read more about NEI's history.

Anniversary Events

Past Events

Translational Research and Vision
June 24 – 25, 2010

The Fourth Sayer Vision Research Lecture
March 10, 2010

Focus on Glaucoma
February 18 - 19, 2010

Stem Cell Therapies : From Degeneration to Regeneration
January 12, 2010

Neuroscience and Vision
November 19 - 20, 2009

Advances in Optical Imaging and Biomedical Science
June 1 - 2, 2009

Genetics and Genomics in Vision
April 16-17, 2009

Opening Program and Film
April 3, 2009
View a videocast of the opening program. This event featured the showing of BLINDSIGHT - the award winning documentary film. BLINDSIGHT features Erik Weihenmayer, a blind mountain climber who embarked on an extraordinary expedition up the north face of Mount Everest, with six blind Tibetan students. Prior to this journey, Erik worked with NEI-supported scientists in the development of BrainPort, an apparatus in which a head-mounted camera sends electronic signals to the tongue and then to the brain to provide a "visual field" for a visually impaired person. Using BrainPort, Erik was the first blind man to summit Mount Everest. Read more about Erik and BrainPort.

Department of Health and Human Services NIH, the National Institutes of Health