Fredericus (Erik) van Kuijk, M.D., Ph.D., on October 1 began his new duties as head of the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Minnesota Medical School. He replaces Jay H. Krachmer, M.D., who retired this fall after a distinguished 49-year medical career that included chairing the department since 1992.
An expert in early diagnosis and nutritional and pharmacological therapies for age-related macular degeneration (AMD), van Kuijk earned both his M.D. and Ph.D. (biochemistry) from the University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands. His research has led to new approaches to preventing the progression of AMD.
“What attracted me here were the quality and diverse talents of the faculty in ophthalmology,” van Kuijk says. “Because the department has clinical faculty that have this basic science background, it provides us an opportunity to initiate more translational research projects.”
Van Kuijk completed his internship, residency, and fellowship at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, where he was a professor in the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences before coming to Minnesota. He also completed an additional year of training in retinal degenerative diseases at Moorfields Eye Hospital, London.