Science and Research

Myopia research

Our researchers are involved in a number of studies that strive to advance our understanding of myopia (short-sightedness), one of the most common types of refractive error.


Our researchers are working to investigate the prevention and treatment of myopia, which occurs when light passing through the eye does not focus correctly on the retina at the back of the eye, creating blurred vision. Through a study on myopia in China, our ophthalmic epidemiology researchers found that spending more time playing outside could help reduce the risk of children developing short-sightedness as they grow up. They are also working on innovative treatments that could slow down myopia progression in children. Our clinical genetics team also conducts research to find the genes responsible for common eye conditions, including myopia. Recent studies have identified two regions on chromosome 15 which are associated with refractive error.

Why this research is important

Refractive error causes half of all vision problems in Australia. Between 200,000 and 300,000 Australians are not seeing as clearly as they should be because of under-corrected refractive error – for example, wearing glasses with an out-of-date prescription.