Paul A. Sieving, M.D., Ph.D.

Neil and MJ Kelly Presidential Chair

Director, Clinical Service for Inherited Retinal Dystrophies

Research Director, Department of Ophthalmology

Director, Center for Ocular Regenerative Therapy (CORT)

Director, Center for Visual Sciences (CVS)

Professor, Department of Ophthalmology

To see if Paul A. Sieving is accepting new patients, or for assistance finding a UC Davis doctor, please call 800-2-UCDAVIS (800-282-3284).



Inherited Retinal and Macular Dystrophies

Locations and Contact

Lawrence J. Ellison Ambulatory Care Center

Ophthalmology Clinic-Eye Center
4860 Y St.
Sacramento, CA 95817

Get Directions

Phone: 916-734-6602

Additional Numbers

Clinic Fax


Clinic Referral Phone


Physician Referrals

800-4-UCDAVIS (800-482-3284)

Clinical Interests

Paul Sieving, MD, PhD, is Professor of Ophthalmology at the UC Davis. He is recognized internationally for his expertise in clinical conditions of genetic retinal and macular degeneration. These can affect all ages from birth through childhood to adult. They are termed Inherited Retinal Dystrophies (IRD) and include retinitis pigmentosa, Stargardt macular degeneration, cone-rod degeneration and other retinal genetic conditions. He specializes in diagnosing patients with these conditions and works with them to understand their clinical course and consequences. These conditions can be genetically inherited and have family implications, and the medical evaluation may include DNA genotyping to search for the genetic cause. Additional specialized testing includes the electroretinogram (ERG), visual field sensitivity, and retinal imaging studies of rod and cone photoreceptors using adaptive optics photography and OCT imaging. Dr. Sieving limits his practice to IRD conditions and does not accept patients with diabetic retinopathty or inflammatory conditions.

Research/Academic Interests

Dr. Sieving’s research focuses on working with patients who have genetic retinal diseases and on developing laboratory approaches to repairing injured retinal cells and tissues. He works to understand eye diseases toward developing therapies for inherited retinal dystrophies. He established the Center for Ocular Regenerative Therapy (CORT) at UC Davis Health in 2020. CORT physicians and scientists are developing gene and stem cell therapies for these conditions. He currently is conducting a human gene therapy clinical trial for X-Linked Retinoschisis (XLRS) disease. Dr. Sieving holds elected membership in the National Academy of Medicine USA, in 2006, and in the German Academy of Science in 2013. He has published more than 250 scientific papers and book chapters. He previously was Director of the National Eye Institute at NIH.



Center/Program Affiliation

Eye Center

Undergraduate School

B.A., Valparaiso University, Valparaiso IN 1970

Medical School

M.D., University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago IL 1978

Other School

Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, University of Illinois Graduate School, Chicago IL 1981

Other School

M.S., Nuclear Physics, Yale University, New Haven CT 1973

Other School

J.D. Degree Program, Law, Yale Law School, New Haven CT 1973-1974


University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago IL 1978-1979


Ophthalmology, University of Illinois College of Medicine, Chicago IL 1979-1982


Ophthalmology/Inherited Retinal Dystrophies, Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Boston MA 1984-1985


Ophthalmology / Retinal Physiology, UC San Francisco, San Francisco CA 1982-1984

Distinguished Service Award, American Academy of Ophthalmology, 2020

SOI Honorary Award in Ophthalmology, Societa Oftalmologica Italiana, Milan, Italy, 2016

German National Academy of Sciences, Elected, 2013

National Academy of Medicine, USA, Elected member, 2006

Pisart Vision Award, Lighthouse for the Blind International, New York, 2005

Complete List of Published Work:

Vijayasarathy C, Sardar Pasha SPB, Sieving PA. Of men and mice: Human X-linked retinoschisis and fidelity in mouse modeling. Prog Retin Eye Res. 2021 Aug 11:100999. doi:10.1016/j.preteyeres.2021.100999. Epub ahead of print. PMID:34390869.

Vijayasarathy C, Zeng Y, Brooks MJ, Fariss RN, Sieving PA. Genetic Rescue of X-Linked Retinoschisis Mouse (Rs1-/y) Retina Induces Quiescence of the Retinal Microglial Inflammatory State Following AAV8-RS1 Gene Transfer and Identifies Gene Networks Underlying Retinal Recovery. Hum Gene Ther. 2021 Jul;32(13-14):667-681. doi:10.1089/hum.2020.213. Epub 2020 Dec 14. PMID:33019822.

Mishra A, Vijayasarathy C, Cukras CA, Wiley HE, Sen HN, Zeng Y, Wei LL, Sieving PA. Immune function in X-linked retinoschisis subjects in an AAV8-RS1 phase I/IIa gene therapy trial. Mol Ther. 2021 Jun 2;29(6):2030-2040. doi:10.1016/j.ymthe.2021.02.013. Epub 2021 Feb 15. PMID:33601057.

Thompson DA, Iannaccone A, Ali RR, Arshavsky VY, Audo I, Bainbridge JWB, Besirli CG, Birch DG, Branham KE, Cideciyan AV, Daiger SP, Dalkara D, Duncan JL, Fahim AT, Flannery JG, Gattegna R, Heckenlively JR, Heon E, Jayasundera KT, Khan NW, Klassen H, Leroy BP, Molday RS, Musch DC, Pennesi ME, Petersen-Jones SM, Pierce EA, Rao RC, Reh TA, Sahel JA, Sharon D, Sieving PA, Strettoi E, Yang P, Zacks DN; Monaciano Consortium. Advancing Clinical Trials for Inherited Retinal Diseases: Recommendations from the Second Monaciano Symposium. Transl Vis Sci Technol. 2020 Jun 3;9(7):2. doi:10.1167/tvst.9.7.2. PMID:32832209.

Turriff A, Blain D, Similuk M, Biesecker B, Wiley H, Cukras C, Sieving PA. Motivations and Decision Making Processes of Men With X-linked Retinoschisis Considering Participation in an Ocular Gene Therapy Trial. Am J Ophthalmol. 2019 Aug;204:90-96. doi:10.1016/j.ajo.2019.03.009. Epub 2019 Mar 16. PMID:30885710.

Song H, Bush RA, Zeng Y, Qian H, Wu Z, Sieving PA. Trans-ocular Electric Current In Vivo Enhances AAV-Mediated Retinal Gene Transduction after Intravitreal Vector Administration. Mol Ther Methods Clin Dev. 2018 Dec 21;13:77-85. doi:10.1016/j.omtm.2018.12.006. PMID:30719486.

Heymann JB, Vijayasarathy C, Huang RK, Dearborn AD, Sieving PA, Steven AC. Cryo-EM of retinoschisin branched networks suggests an intercellular adhesive scaffold in the retina. J Cell Biol. 2019 Mar 4;218(3):1027-1038. doi:10.1083/jcb.201806148. Epub 2019 Jan 10. PMID:30630865.

Cukras C, Wiley HE, Jeffrey BG, Sen HN, Turriff A, Zeng Y, Vijayasarathy C, Marangoni D, Ziccardi L, Kjellstrom S, Park TK, Hiriyanna S, Wright JF, Colosi P, Wu Z, Bush RA, Wei LL, Sieving PA. Retinal AAV8-RS1 Gene Therapy for X-Linked Retinoschisis: Initial Findings from a Phase I/IIa Trial by Intravitreal Delivery. Mol Ther. 2018 Sep 5;26(9):2282-2294. doi:10.1016/j.ymthe.2018.05.025. Epub 2018 Jul 7. PMID:30196853.

Allahdina AM, Stetson PF, Vitale S, Wong WT, Chew EY, Ferris FL III, Sieving PA, Cukras C. Optical Coherence Tomography Minimum Intensity as an Objective Measure for the Detection of Hydroxychloroquine Toxicity. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2018 Apr 1;59(5):1953-1963. doi:10.1167/iovs.17-22668. PMID:29677357.