Ocular Immunology

The division of ocular immunology at the Wilmer Eye Institute provides evaluation and management of immunologically mediated ocular diseases, such as uveitis, intraocular inflammation, scleritis and iritis.

Our clinical and research leaders offer highly specialized and advanced diagnostic and treatment options for patients with inflammatory eye diseases.

Conditions we Treat

Uveitis (Intraocular)

  • Anterior
  • Intermediate
  • Pan
  • Posterior


  • Conjunctivitis
  • Episcleritis
  • Keratitis
  • Scleritis


  • Idiopathic Orbital Inflammatory Syndrome (Pseudotumor)
  • Optic neuritis
  • Optic neuropathy


  • Herpes
  • Tuberculosis
  • West Nile
  • Zika

Systemic Disease-Associated

  • Graft vs. Host Disease
  • Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis
  • Mucous membrane pemphigoid
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

researchers at Wilmer's ocular immunology departments

Ocular Immunology Research

Faculty members in the Division of Ocular Immunology are currently working on the following projects:

Jennifer E. Thorne, M.D., Ph.D., Chair

  • Epidemiology of clinical treatments in ocular inflammatory diseases
  • Molecular search for viruses, bacteria and fungi in Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada syndrome. Funded by the Wilmer/King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital joint research collaboration. Led by Dr. Thorne and Dr. Hassan Al-Dhibi. Look for potential microbial etiologies of Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada syndrome by searching for viral, bacterial and fungal genomes in the peripheral blood of patients with active Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada syndrome.

Bryn Burkholder, M.D.

  • Working with the MUST (Multicenter uveitis steroid treatment) trials and the Longitudinal Study of the Ocular Complication of AIDS 
  • Looking at current practice patterns, clinical outcomes and complications with steroid implants for patients with non-infectious uveitis

Meghan Kathleen Berkenstock, M.D.

  • Focus on risk reduction and quality assurance initiatives in the care of patients with uveitis
  • Focus on identifying ocular adverse events (IRAE) associated with use of immunotherapy agents in the treatment of systemic malignancies
  • Member and the only ophthalmologist on the National Comprehensive Cancer Network Panel on developing guidelines to treat IRAEs
  • Served as a panelist on the FDA Oncology Center of Excellence and CDER Office of Oncologic Drugs
  • Focus on quality improvement in the care of patients with uveitis with a secondary concentration on identifying ocular side effects of oncologic immunotherapy agents
  • Member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network Immune Related Toxicity Panel

At Wilmer, you find people like Dr. Thorne, who have that all important combination of compassion and expertise that let's you know everything is going to be all right.

Wilmer patient Meredith Cross