After majoring in biochemistry in college, Dr. Burns studied mechanisms of synaptic transmission for her PhD at Duke University in Durham, N.C., and for her postdoctoral training chose to study the biochemistry of photoreceptors at Stanford University in Stanford, Calif. In her faculty position at the UC Davis Eye Center and Center for Neuroscience, which she has held since 2001, she has continued these studies and expanded her research program to include neuroinflammation.
"Although I have been in vision research for more than 20 years, my interest in retinal neuroinflammation is much more recent. I am motivated by a personal desire to utilize my understanding of signal transduction to making a difference in the quality of life of people I know, like family members and friends. My family is directly affected by glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration, and I believe that the work I do every day will directly impact both the quality of care and mechanisms for treatment yet within my parents' lifetimes."