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University of Iowa News Release


Sept. 30, 2010

At A Glance

Eye researchers receive $1.1 million Defense Department grant

Vision specialists at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City have received a $1.1 million research grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to study objective methods of testing visual dysfunction in patients with brain injuries or cognitive impairment.

Randy Kardon, M.D., Ph.D., a UI professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences who holds the Pomerantz Family Chair in Ophthalmology, and UI research scientist Pieter Poolman Ph.D., will lead the study. They will validate three methods of assessing visual function: the pupil light reflex, evoked potentials from the visual pathway and eye movement tracking of visual targets.

The results of the study will also indirectly help address three critical treatment areas, including patients with visual dysfunction caused by traumatic brain injury, traumatic optic nerve injuries and blast or burn injuries in the eye.

The study has important potential applications and implication beyond military personnel. Similar damage to the visual system can also occur among civilians who receive traumatic brain injuries resulting from motor vehicle accidents and contact sports. In addition, the objective tests of vision being developed in the study may be applied to infants and children.


Dubuque girl, 9, is Kid Captain for Homecoming game Oct. 2

Maddie Strauss, 9, daughter of Lori and Bill Strauss of Dubuque, Iowa, will serve as Kid Captain when the Iowa Hawkeyes host Penn State Oct. 2 at Kinnick Stadium.

Maddie was diagnosed in April 2009 with a severe stroke that affected both sides of her brain. Today, with physical and occupational therapy back home in Dubuque and follow-up visits at UI Children's Hospital, she continues to make great progress. More information and a video about Maddie are available at

Now in its second year, the Kid Captain program is a partnership between UI Children's Hospital and the Iowa Hawkeyes to honor UI Children's Hospital patients and celebrate their inspirational stories.

Home game Kid Captains are honored at midfield before the game. All Kid Captains, including honorary away game captains, will have their individual stories told throughout the football season and receive a commemorative jersey.


UI Museum of Natural History to screen documentary 'Lost Nation'

Long before Iowa was a state and the University of Iowa opened its doors in 1847, the Ioway nation lived and worked on the land. This Sunday, Oct. 3, the UI Museum of Natural History will screen the documentary, “Lost Nation: The Ioway,” at 2 p.m. in Macbride Auditorium. The film features interviews with tribal elders and archaeologists who tell the story of the small tribe’s struggle for survival and quest to retain their unique Ioway culture. The event is part of the Museum’s Movies@MNH series. For more information on the series or on the Museum of Natural History visit or call 319-335-0606.


UI Writing University website will stream Nelson reading Oct. 11

Fiction writer Antonya Nelson will present a free "Live from Prairie Lights" reading at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 11 at 15 S. Dubuque St. The event will be streamed live and archived on the University of Iowa's Writing University website --

Nelson will read from her first novel in 10 years "Bound," a tale of love and secrets set in the Wichita of Nelson’s childhood, a city plagued by the BTK serial killer.

Nelson teaches in the Warren Wilson MFA Program, and holds the Cullen Chair in Creative Writing at the University of Houston. The recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and a National Endowment for the Arts Literary Fellowship, she is the award-winning author of four novels and six short story collections. Her stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper's, Redbook and The Best American Short Stories She is married to the writer, Robert Boswell.


Photos for At A Glance items, if available, may be found at (for arts news) or (for all other news).

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