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What we do

The Pete Williams Lab uses the eye as a model of the central nervous system to elucidate early mechanisms of neurodegeneration. Our current focus is the glaucoma. We are located at S:t Eriks Ögonsjukhus (St. Erik Eye Hospital). The working language of the lab is English.

meet the people doing the research

Our skills

We utilize modern transcriptomic and molecular tools to delicately dissect pathways pertaining to early aging and neurodegenerative disease mechanisms and to identify potential therapeutic targets which we then test and verify in animal and cell models of neurodegeneration. The strengths of my group include neurobiology and molecular biology techniques, gene therapy, electrophysiology, and –omics data generation and analysis.

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Current Research

Glaucoma is a complex, multifactorial disease affecting an estimated 80 million people worldwide and is the leading cause of irreversible blindness. It is a significant health and economic burden at both individual and societal level. Age, genetics, and high intraocular pressure (IOP) are all considerable risk factors. Despite strategies to manage IOP, >40% of treated glaucoma patients will progress to blindness. Neuroprotective treatments for glaucoma are of great therapeutic need.

The Pete Williams Lab is developing new neuroprotective treatments for glaucoma, from bench-to-bedside. Specifically, we are focusing on:

  • Mechanisms of axon degeneration and neurodegeneration,
  • Neuronal metabolism, especially NAD+ metabolism,
  • Neuro-glia metabolic interactions and neuroinflammation,
  • Novel translational neuroprotective strategies for glaucoma and other neurodegenerative diseases.

We collaborate with basic scientists and research clinicians to develop discoveries into targeted therapeutics in the clinic which includes multi-omic profiling, novel pharmacology, and translation to other diseases and clinical trials.

View all Publications

Improvement in inner retinal function in glaucoma in response to nicotinamide (vitamin B3) supplementation: A crossover randomized clinical trial.

Hui F, Tang J, Williams PA, McGuinness MB, Hadoux X, Casson RJ, Coote M, Trounce IA, Martin KR, van Wijngaarden P, Crowston JG

Vitamin B3 modulates mitochondrial vulnerability and prevents glaucoma in aged mice.

Williams PA, Harder JM, Foxworth NE, Cochran KE, Philip VM, Porciatti V, Smithies O, John SWM

Disturbed glucose and pyruvate metabolism in glaucoma with neuroprotection by pyruvate or rapamycin.

Harder JM, Guymer C, Wood JPM, Daskalakis E, Chidlow G, Zhang C, Balasubramanian R, Cardozo BH, Foxworth NE, Deering KE, Ouellette TB, Montgomery C, Wheelock CE, Casson RJ, Williams PA, John SWM

Nicotinamide provides neuroprotection in glaucoma by protecting against mitochondrial and metabolic dysfunction.

Tribble JR, Otmani A, Sun S, Ellis S, Cimaglia G, Vohra R, Jӧe M, Lardner E, Venkataraman AP, Domínguez-Vicent A, Kokkali E, Rho S, G Jóhannesson, Burgess RW, Fuerst PG, Brautaset R, Kolko M, Morgan JE, Crowston JG, Votruba M, Williams PA

NAD salvage pathway machinery expression in normal and glaucomatous retina and optic nerve.

Tribble JR, Hagström A, Jusseaume K, Lardner E, Wong RCB, Stålhammar G, Williams PA

Email: pete [dot] williams [at] ki.se

Pete Williams