French President Names Pitt Professor to Council for Science

December 12, 2023


José-Alain Sahel, Distinguished Professor and Eye and Ear Foundation Professor and Chair, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, was appointed a member of French President Emmanuel Macron’s new Presidential Council for Science.

Sahel, who is also director of the UPMC Vision Institute, is one of 12 researchers Macron chose to advise him on scientific subjects and assist in the implementation of public policies.

Macron made the announcement on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023, at a gathering of French researchers and scientific leaders at the Élysée Palace in Paris.

Sahel, a member of the French Academy of Sciences since 2007, was founder and director of the Institut de la Vision Paris and came to Pitt in 2016. He is a global leader in vision restoration techniques, and is especially well-known for his breakthrough work in optogenetics to partially restore sight to the blind.

“Congratulations to Dr. Sahel on this tremendous honor,” said Anantha Shekhar, senior vice chancellor for the health sciences and John and Gertrude Petersen Dean of the School of Medicine at Pitt. “This new role is yet another significant avenue for this distinguished member of our faculty to use science to transform lives. I am immensely proud.”

Image: UPMC