Research Interest

  • Embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells
  • Gene therapy
  • Genetic mechanisms underlying ocular neurodegeneration
  • Genome engineering
  • Human stem cell transplantations
  • Inherited retinal degenerations
  • Metabolism and metabolic reprogramming
  • Mouse models of ocular disease
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

HIF2a activation and mitochondrial deficit due to iron chelation cause retinal atrophy.
Kong Y, Liu PK, Li Y, Nolan ND, Quinn PMJ, Hsu CW, Jenny LA, Zhao J, Cui X, Chang YJ, Wert KJ, Sparrow JR, Wang NK, Tsang SH, EMBO Mol Med 2023 Jan e16525
Long-term progression of retinal degeneration in a preclinical model of CLN7 Batten disease as a baseline for testing clinical therapeutics.
Rowe AA, Chen X, Nettesheim ER, Issioui Y, Dong T, Hu Y, Messahel S, Kayani SN, Gray SJ, Wert KJ, EBioMedicine 2022 Nov 85 104314
Base and Prime Editing in the Retina-From Preclinical Research toward Human Clinical Trials.
Yee T, Wert KJ, Int J Mol Sci 2022 Oct 23 20
Differential effects of obstructive sleep apnea on the corneal subbasal nerve plexus and retinal nerve fiber layer.
Bussan KA, Stuard WL, Mussi N, Lee W, Whitson JT, Issioui Y, Rowe AA, Wert KJ, Robertson DM, PLoS One 2022 17 6 e0266483
Replenishment of TCA cycle intermediates provides photoreceptor resilience against neurodegeneration during progression of retinitis pigmentosa.
Rowe AA, Patel PD, Gordillo R, Wert KJ, JCI Insight 2021 Jul
Phenotypic variance in Calpain-5 retinal degeneration.
Tang PH, Chemudupati T, Wert KJ, Folk JC, Mahajan M, Tsang SH, Bassuk AG, Mahajan VB, Am J Ophthalmol Case Rep 2020 Jun 18 100627
Metabolite therapy guided by liquid biopsy proteomics delays retinal neurodegeneration.
Wert KJ, Velez G, Kanchustambham VL, Shankar V, Evans LP, Sengillo JD, Zare RN, Bassuk AG, Tsang SH, Mahajan VB, EBioMedicine 2020 Feb 52 102636
CAPN5 genetic inactivation phenotype supports therapeutic inhibition trials.
Wert KJ, Koch SF, Velez G, Hsu CW, Mahajan M, Bassuk AG, Tsang SH, Mahajan VB, Hum. Mutat. 2019 Aug
Insights into Retinal Development Using Live Imaging in Female Carriers of Choroideremia.
Wert KJ, Bakall B, Bassuk AG, Tsang SH, Mahajan VB, Ophthalmic Surg Lasers Imaging Retina 2019 May 50 5 e158-e162
Metabolite therapy guided by liquid biopsy proteomics delays retinal degeneration
Wert KJ, Velez G, Vijayalaksmi K, Shankar V, Sengillo JD, Zare RN, Bassuk AG, Tsang SH, Mahajan VB Biorxiv 2019

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons/Institute of Human Nutrition (2008-2009)
  • Columbia University Graduate School of the Arts and Sciences/Institute of Human Nutrition (2009-2013)
  • Stanford University School of Medicine (2017-2019)
  • Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research/MIT (2014-2017)