Gillian McLellan, BVMS PhD

University of Wisconsin - Madison

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University of Wisconsin - Madison


I am a clinician-scientist, board certified in veterinary ophthalmology. Although my PhD studies were in RPE cell biology, since 2005, when I identified a spontaneous genetic form of congenital glaucoma in cats and established a breeding colony, my research interests shifted to glaucoma.
The current focus of my lab is on  glaucoma pathophysiology: encompassing, structure, function and gene expression and cell signaling in the optic nerve head and aqueous outflow pathways. With collaborators, we are also exploring the role of scleral and lamina cribrosa extracellular matrix and biomechanical properties in determining susceptibility to axonal loss in glaucoma and we are engaged in studies to determine efficacy of novel therapies to mitigate adverse toxic effects of the anti-seizure medication, vigabatrin, on the retina. 
My clinical interests are broad but with a focus on glaucoma: including electrophysiology; imaging of the retina and optic nerve; tonometry, and the role of genetics in susceptibility to inherited glaucomas in companion animals.
In addition to teaching and training undergraduates, graduate and professional students, over the years I have mentored more than a fifteen residents in comparative ophthalmology, served as President of the European College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists, lectured widely and co-authored two text books.
Outside of work much of my time is spent chasing after my fast-growing, fast-moving twin boys and hanging out with my husband and friends. I enjoy music, Wisconsin's fantastic craft-beer scene, gardening and cooking. I try to be a locavore but as a proud Scot, I appreciate and collect single malts which I consider vastly superior to whiskey with an 'e', including Bourbon.