Clinical trials team Meet the team


Dr Konstantinos Balaskas
Director of reading centre and clinical trials lead


  • 2017 Member of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists (MRCOphth)

  • 2013 Doctor of Medicine in Research (MD), University of Lausanne, Switzerland

  • 2013 Fellowship in Medical Retina and Reading Centre, Moorfields Eye Hospital, London

  • 2012 Senior Fellowship in Medical Retina, Manchester Royal Eye Hospital, Manchester

  • 2011 Fellowship in Uveitis and Medical Retina, Jules Gonin Eye Hospital, Lausanne

  • 2010 Fellow of the European Board of Ophthalmologists (FEBO)

  • 2002 Medical Degree, University of Athens, Greece (MB BS)

Director of the Moorfields Ophthalmic Reading Centre (since November 2017): Since taking up the role of Director of the Moorfields Reading centre, I have been working to establish the Reading Centre as a pioneer in the Big Data and Artificial Intelligence ecosystem through academic and commercial collaborations, including with Google DeepMind. Novel, efficient methods of image grading are being developed through the AI pipeline allowing faster turn-around and enabling exploratory projects on novel biomarkers of response to treatment for retinal disease.

Service Delivery Research and Implementation Science: I have a keen interest in new ways of delivering care in Ophthalmology, including with tele-medicine, ‘virtual’ clinics and Artificial Intelligence. I have led two national research projects in the UK funded by the National Institute of Health Research looking at novel care models for Ophthalmology patients, exploring the role of modern imaging and digital technologies. I am developing the role of the Reading Centre as a tele-ophthalmology hub in the context of novel models of care, including ‘virtual clinics’, AI and home-monitoring.

Principal Investigator for Clinical Trials: I have received national recognition as one of the Best Principal Investigators for Clinical Trials in the UK for three consecutive years. This has equipped me with in-depth understanding of the challenges of research governance and clinical trial set-up and monitoring. I am bringing this knowledge and expertise into my current role as Director of the Moorfields Reading Centre.


Dr Cathy Egan
Diabetic Retinopathy Lead/ MacTel study Lead

Dr Cathy Egan is a world-renowned retinal expert and lead for the MacTel trial at the Moorfields Reading Centre.

Dr Egan has published extensively on novel imaging and automated grading for Diabetic Retinopathy. Her pioneering work on the MacTel study has engendered new insight into this condition and has demonstrated the crucial role of ophthalmic imaging for refined phenotyping of retinal disease.

Dr Egan is lead for the diabetic retinopathy service at Moorfields Eye Hospital.


Dr Nikolas Pontikos
Senior Data Scientist


  • 2011-2014 PhD Statistical Genetics, Cambridge

  • 2008-2009 MSci Bioinformatics, Imperial College

  • 2003-2007 MEng Computer Science, University College



  • Computational Image Analysis

  • Deep Learning

  • Cluster Analysis

  • Genetics

  • Bioinformatics

  • Databases


Gongyu Zhang
AI Computer Scientist


  • 2018-2019 MSci Computer Vision, University College London

  • 2014-2018 BSci Electrical and Electronics Engineering, University of Liverpool


Dr Hagar Khalid
Visiting Research Fellow

Dr Khalid is leading a number of research projects involving the role of OCT angiography in the diagnosis and management of chorio-retinal disease, including in wide-field OCT angiography

Irene Leung
Image Grader

Qualifications: BA (Hons)

Dr Daniela Florea
Image Grader


  • PhD and MSc Human Nutrition, Granada University Spain

  • BSc Biology, West University Romania


  • Grading for Bio Bank studies

  • Screening/grading for diabetic retinopathy –face to face contact with patients

  • Data management for clinical trials

  • Statistical analysis

  • Conduct clinical trial, responsible from open and lock trial, patient recruitment, monitoring, cross-checking.

  • I am interested in seeing how nutrition impacts on health and disease and how it can improve day-to-day life.


Nisha Shah
Image Grader


  • MSc Biomedical Sciences, Kingston University UK

  • BSc Biomedical Sciences, King’s College London, UK


Grading for Diabetic retinopathy screening, NetwoRC UK studies, epidemiological studies, PEEK smartphone grading and working on the Cleopatra clinical trial.


Tjebo Heeren
Research Fellow

Dr Heeren is an Ophthalmologist with specialist interest in Medical Retina. He has a particular research interest in Macular Telangiectasia type II and has pioneered image analysis methods that offered new insight into the understanding of this rare disease. Dr Heeren is involved in a number of imaging, clinical and basic science research projects pertaining to MacTel.

Dr Philipp Müller
Honorary Research Fellow

Dr. Philipp L. Müller received his medical and doctoral degree from the Julius-Maximilians University School of Medicine, Würzburg, Germany. He trained in Ophthalmogy at University of Bonn, Germany. Where he continued to work as Consultant and Post-Doctoral Clinician Scientist. Since 2019, Dr. Müller works as Honorary Research Fellow at Moorfields Eye Hospital, London, UK.

His special interest is research for retinal diseases and novel retinal imaging technologies as well as data science and machine leaning applications in healthcare. He ​has evaluated and established multiple novel imaging and image analysis methods that offered new insight into the understanding of retinal disease entities which has been awarded multiple times.

Dr. Müller is involved in numerous projects dealing with imaging, image analysis, big data science and the application of artificial intelligence in Ophthalmology.


Dr Bart Liefers
Senior Computer Scientist

Dr Liefers is a computer scientist with expertise in medical retina segmentation (OCT). He develops annotation tools to assist graders and build training datasets for AI. He aspiration is to combine AI and human to build interactive annotation tools (Bayesian online learning).

Dr Sophie Glinton
Senior Computer Scientist

Dr Glinton is a computer scientist with expertise in multi-modal imaging. She develops AI algorithms for structural (OCT, FAF, OCT-A) and functional (ERG) eye exams.