• Ophthalmology and optometry research (Retinal disease and visual function)



  • Dr Lauren Ayton (B. Optom, PhD, GCOT, FACO) is a clinician-scientist with a strong research interest in vision restoration, retinal pathology and clinical assessment of visual performance. Dr Ayton completed her PhD in 2009 at the University of Melbourne in paediatric optometry, and then completed a postdoctoral position in the area of traumatic brain injury and ocular motor function. She now works as the Bionic Eye clinical program leader, as part of the Bionic Vision Australia consortium, where she has led the recent clinical trial of a prototype bionic eye device in 3 patients with profound vision loss (http://bionicvision.org.au/media/In_the_news). Dr Ayton is also a passionate science communicator, presenting fortnightly on 3RRR radio's Einstein-A-Go-Go science show (http://www.rrr.org.au/program/einstein-a-go-go), and speaking frequently at both peer-reviewed conferences and community engagement events. She is a 2013 Hugh Rogers Medical Research Fellow (http://www.melbournereview.com.au/features/article/hugh-rogers-fellowships), and travelled to Harvard University in 2014 for a two month collaborative project to form an international consensus in the area of patient outcomes in vision restoration clinical trials.   


Member of

  • American Academy of Optometry (AAO). Member 2014 -
  • The Australian Society for Medical Research (ASMR). Media and Communications Manager 2011 -
  • Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO). Member 2008 -
  • Australian College of Optometry (ACO). Fellow 2004 -
  • Optometry Australia. Member 2004 -


Selected publications


Additional Grant Information

  • 2014 Hugh Rogers Fellowship; 2014 University of Melbourne Early Career Research Grant; 2014 Retina Australia Research Grant; 2013 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology Travel Grant; 2013 CERA Community Engagement and Knowledge Transfer award; 2012 Fellow of the Australian College of Optometry; 2012 William Angliss Research Grant; 2012 Ian Potter Foundation Travel Grant; 2012 Centre for Eye Research Australia Excellence in Research award; 2011 Harold Mitchell Postdoctoral Travel Grant   


Education and training

  • GCOT, University of New South Wales 2011
  • PhD, University of Melbourne 2009
  • B.Optom, University of Melbourne 2004

Awards and honors

  • Fellowship to travel to Harvard University to complete a 2 month collaborative project, Hugh Rogers Fellowship (Melbourne-Boston Sister Cities Association), 2013
  • The CERA Community Engagement and Knowledge Transfer Award, Centre for Eye Research Australia, 2013
  • The CERA Excellence in Research Award, Centre for Eye Research Australia, 2012
  • Fellow of the Victorian College of Optometry Australia, 2012



Available for supervision

  • Y

Supervision Statement

  • Dr Ayton currently supervises 2 PhD students in the areas of vision assessment (both clinical and functional) and age-related macular degeneration. She has a specific research interest in retinal disease (mainly retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration), vision restoration (particularly bionic eyes) and vision assessment.