Giblin photo - 2016Professor of Biomedical Sciences & Director
422 Dodge Hall of Engineering
(248) 370-2395


Frank Giblin received his Ph.D. in biochemistry from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 1974. He has conducted NIH-funded metabolic and biochemical studies on the lens and cataract at Oakland University for 40 years. He is particularly interested in the possible role of oxidative and free radical processes in the formation of nuclear cataract, a common type of maturity-onset human cataract that affects the center of the lens, resulting in blindness. He also investigates unusually active antioxidant mechanisms present in the epithelium of the lens that help to keep the tissue transparent. 
Assisting Giblin in his studies is Research Technician Victor Leverenz and postdoctoral fellows Anburasu Kumarasamy and Sivakumar Jeyarajan. A number of undergraduate students have also helped Giblin including, most recently, Caroline Cencer and Maria Donovan.  Experimental animal models used by the group to study mechanisms of cataract include hyperbaric oxygen, UV light, X-irradiation and the thioredoxin reductase-1 heterozygous knockout mouse. In the past, he has also studied retinal photoreceptor damage in O2-treated mice and collaborated with retinal surgeons (William Beaumont Hospital) on an enzymatic replacement for vitrectomy surgery.  Techniques that are employed include gel electrophoresis, immunoblotting, fluorescence microscopy, autoradiography, tissue culture, HPLC, enzyme analysis, microarray analysis, Real-Time PCR and Northern Blotting. As part of Dr. Giblin's NIH R01 grant, he will be collaborating with researchers at Vanderbilt University, Oregon Health Services University, and the University of Missouri.
In addition to his research activities and being Director of the Eye Research Institute, Giblin serves as a Lens Section Editor for Experimental Eye Research and was a member of the NIH VIS-A Study section from 1995-99. For many years, he organized lens sessions for the biennial meetings of the International Conference for Eye Research (ICER), most recently at the 2016 meeting in Tokyo.  Here at Oakland University he is a former chair of the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee. In 2007, Giblin received the Kinoshita Lectureshhip Award for his studies on cataract. He has presented keynote lectures at the 50th annual meeting of the Japanese Cataract Research Society in Fukuoka, Japan (2011), the European Frontiers in Ocular Pharmacology in Catania, Italy (2013),  and the annual meeting of the Michigan Society of Medical Research (2014). In 2015 he presented the first Harding Endowed Lecture at Oakland University.

Selected Publications (from over 100):

  1. Giblin, F.J. Glutathione, a vital lens antioxidant. Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics 16:121-135, 2000.
  2. Giblin, F.J., Leverenz, V.R., Padgoankar, V.A., Unakar, N.J., Dang, L., Lin, L.-R., Lou, M.F., Reddy, V.N., Borchman, D., Dillon, J.F. UVA light in vivo reaches the nucleus of the guinea pig lens and produces deleterious, oxidative effects. Exp. Eye Res. 75:445-58, 2002.
  3. Padgaonkar, V.A., Leverenz, V.R., Dang, L., Chen S-C, Pelliccia S., and Giblin, F.J. Thioredoxin reductase may be essential for the normal growth of hyperbaric oxygen-treated human lens epithelial cells. Exp. Eye Res. 79:847-857 (2004).
  4. Simpanya, M.F., Ansari, R.R., Suh, K.I., Leverenz, V.R. and Giblin F.J. Aggregation of lens crystallins in an in vivo hyperbaric oxygen/guinea pig model for nuclear cataract: dynamic light scattering and HPLC analysis. Invest. Ophth. Vis. Sci. 46: 4641-4651 (2005).
  5. Gosselin, M-E., Kapustij, C.J., Venkateswaran, U.D., Leverenz, V.R., Giblin, F.J. Raman spectroscopic evidence for nuclear disulfide in isolated lenses of hyperbaric oxygen-treated guinea pigs. Exp. Eye Res. 84:493-499 (2005)
  6. Quiram, P.A., Leverenz, V.R., Baker, R.M., Dang, L, Giblin, F.J., Trese, M.T. Microplasmin-induced posterior vitreous detachment affects vitreous oxygen levels. Retina 27:1090-96 (2007).
  7. Simpanya, M.F., Ansari R.R., Leverenz V., and Giblin F.J.  Measurement of lens protein aggregation in vivo using dynamic light scattering in a guinea pig/UVA model for nuclear cataract. Photochem Photobiol., 84:1589-1595 (2008). 
  8. Simpanya, M. F., Wistow, G., David, L.L., Giblin F.J., and Mitton, K.P.  Expressed sequence tag analysis of guinea pig (Cavia porcellus) eye tissues for NEIBank.  Molecular Vision, 14:2413-27 (2008).  
  9. Giblin, F.J., Quiram, P.A., Leverenz, V.R., Baker, R.M., Dang, L., and Trese, M.T. Enzyme-induced posterior vitreous detachment in the rat produces increased lens nuclear pO2 levels. Exp. Eye Res., 88:286-92  (2009).  
  10. Brennan, L.A., Lee, W., Giblin, F.J., David, L.L., Kantorow, M. Methionine sulfoxide reductase A (MsrA) restores alpha-crystallin chaperone activity lost upon methionine oxidation.  Biochem. Biophys. Acta,  1790:1665-72 (2009).
  11. Simpanya, M.F., Leverenz, V.R. and Giblin, F.J. Expression and purification of his-tagged recombinant mouse zeta-crystallin. Protein Expression and Purification, 69:147-51 (2010).
  12. Goldenberg, D.T., Giblin, F.J., Cheng, M., Chintala, S.K., Trese, M.T., Drenser, K.A., and Ruby, A.J. Posterior vitreous detachment with microplasmin alters the retinal penetration of intravitreal Bevacizumab  (Avastin) in rabbit eyes. Retina 31:393-400 (2011).
  13. Giblin, F.J., Lin, L-R, Leverenz, V. R., Dang, L.  A class I (Senofilcon A) soft contact lens prevents UVB-induced ocular effects, including cataract, in the rabbit in vivo.  Invest. Ophth. Vis. Sci. 52:3667-75 (2011).
  14. Giblin, F.J., Lin, L.R., Simpanya, M.F., Leverenz, V.R. and Fick, C.E. A class I UV-blocking (senofilcon A) soft contact lens prevents UVA-induced yellow fluorescence and NADH loss in the rabbit lens nucleus in vivo. Exp. Eye Res. 102C: 17-27 (2012).
  15. Giblin, F.J., David, L.L., Wilmarth, P.A., Leverenz, V.R. and Simpanya, M.F. Shotgun proteomic analysis of S-thiolation sites of guinea pig lens nuclear crystallins following oxidative stress in vivo. Molecular Vision, 19: 267-280, 2013.
  16. Lyons, B., Karuso, P., Jamie, J.F., Simpanya, M.F., Giblin, F. and Truscott, R.J. Characterisation of a novel UV filter in the lens of the thirteen-lined ground squirrel (Ictidomys tridecemlineatus). Exp Eye Res.:121:114-20 (2014).
  17. Raju, M., Mooney, B.P., Thakkar, K.M., Giblin, F.J., Schey, K.I. and Sharma, K.K. Role of aA-crystallin-derived aA66-80 peptide in guinea pig lens crystallin aggregation and insolubilization. Exp. Eye Res., 132:151-60(2015)
  18. Padgaonkar, V.A., Leverenz, V.R., Bhat, A.V. Pelliccia, S.E. and Giblin, F.J. Thioredoxin reductase, may be more important than GSH in defending human lens epithelial cells against UVA light. Photochem. Photobiol., 91:387-96(2015)