Michael T. Trese, MD, is widely considered the preeminent practicing pediatric retinal surgeon. He is also a beloved educator and recognized as an innovator and translational scientist and has trained or participated in the training of most of the world’s leading pediatric retinal surgeons.
Dr. Trese graduated from the University of Michigan and obtained both an OD (Pennsylvania College of Optometry) and MD (Georgetown University School of Medicine) prior to completing his residency at the Jules Stein Eye Institute. He did fellowships at the National Eye Institute, the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, and the Duke University Eye Center (under the aegis of Dr. David Cogan, Dr. Lorenz Zimmerman, and Dr. Robert Machemer, respectively). The seed of Dr. Trese’s interest in pediatric retinal disease was planted during his fellowship with late Dr. Machemer. After he left Duke, he continued his close relationship with Dr. Machemer and developed surgical procedures that have revolutionized the treatment of pediatric vitreoretinal diseases.
Dr. Trese has held a variety of leadership positions in ophthalmology. On completion of his vitreoretinal fellowship in 1981, he went on to serve as Director of Vitreoretinal Surgery at the University of Kansas prior to joining Associated Retinal Consultants (ARC) in 1982. He is currently Clinical Professor of Biomedical Sciences at The Eye Research Institute of Oakland University, Clinical Associate Professor at Wayne State University School of Medicine, and Chief of Pediatric and Adult Vitreoretinal Surgery at William Beaumont Hospital. He has played a major role in building ARC into the premiere academically oriented private retina practice in the United States.
Dr. Trese’s contributions are particularly noteworthy in view of both the profound clinical impact of his work and the broad range of his contributions. He has had more than 250 manuscripts published in peer-reviewed journals, published more than 30 book chapters, and is a founding editor of Pediatric Retina – currently the definitive textbook on pediatric vitreoretinal diseases and surgery. His landmark scientific contributions have refined the understanding and treatment of complex pediatric vitreoretinal diseases such as retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), familial exudative vitreoretinopathy, congenital X-linked retinoschisis, persistent fetal vasculature, and more. He has served on the Executive Committee of the CRYO-ROP Study, participated in the development of the International Classification of ROP, and pioneered the use of telemedicine in the diagnosis and management of ROP.
As an innovator and translational scientist, Dr. Trese has designed surgical tools to facilitate the execution of our surgical craft (most famously, the “Trese spatula” for complex surgical dissections) and participated in phamacotherapeutic innovation as well (Ocriplasmin®). The surgical management of the retinal detachment phase of ROP has been revolutionized by the two-port lens-sparing approach. His active Pediatric Retinal Vascular Diseases laboratory specifically addresses the molecular genetics of pediatric retinal vascular disease, was the first to demonstrate a genetic predisposition to ROP, and continues to make significant ongoing contributions.
Dr. Trese has been a member of the most prestigious societies in our field and has delivered a host of named lectureships. He has also served as a past president of both the Retina Society (2017) and the Club Jules Gonin (2020). He has received some of the most prestigious awards in ophthalmology, including the J. Donald Gass Award (The Retina Society, 2013) and the Laureate Award at the upcoming American Academy of Ophthalmology meeting this Fall in New Orleans – the Academy’s highest honor (given only 21 times in the Academy’s history).
Dr. Trese has consistently demonstrated the vision and commitment to conquer challenges that others see to be insurmountable. He has also had a profound impact on subsequent generations of ophthalmologists, involved in the training of pediatric retina specialists in leadership positions in the United States and visiting scholars from across the globe. Viewed collectively, Dr. Trese’s accomplishments place him among the most impactful retinologists of our time. The breadth and depth of those accomplishments is most clearly apparent in the impact he has had on the lives of innumerable infants and children affected with pediatric retinal diseases worldwide.
About the author
Antonio Capone Jr
Dr. Capone is an internationally recognized clinician, surgeon and educator whose special interests include pediatric vitreoretinal diseases, complicated retinal detachment, ocular oncology and macular disease. He has authored or co-authored over 300 publications in peer-reviewed medical journals, book chapters, and publications from clinical trials. He is currently a Professor of Ophthalmology at Oakland University William Beaumont Hospital School of Medicine. He joined Associated Retinal Consultants (ARC) in Royal Oak, MI in 2000 and serves as Co-President of ARC, President of the Pediatric Retina Research Foundation (PRRF), and Chairman of the Medical Executive Board for EyeCare Partners. He has been dedicated to education throughout his career and has trained many domestic and international thought leaders in adult and pediatric retinal diseases and surgery. He is a member of many professional organizations, and serves on the Executive Committee of the Retina Society.