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Leon Davies - Aston University. Birmingham, , GB

Leon Davies Leon Davies

Head of School | Aston University


Leon Davies's research is focused on presbyopia and the restoration of ocular accommodation to the ageing eye.




Professor Leon Davies is Head of the School of Optometry and Professor of Optometry & Physiological Optics. He has a 1st Class BSc in Optometry and a PhD in Physiological Optics. Professor Davies is a registered optometrist with the General Optical Council (GOC), a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers, a Fellow of the College of Optometrists (FCOptom), the American Academy of Optometry (FAAO) and a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA). He is a past Clinical Editor of Optometry Today, and is currently Editor-in-chief of the peer review journal Optometry in Practice. Since 2016 he has serves as a Board Trustee of the College of Optometrists, was Chair of their Research Committee (2016-2020) and in February 2020, was elected Vice President of the College.

From 2010 to 2017 he was the Director of Research of the Optometry and Vision Science Research Group that undertakes world-leading ophthalmic research to advance significantly understanding of the development, use, preservation and restoration of ocular function in humans by research on clinical and applied matters relevant to optometry and ophthalmology. Leon has over 50 publications and has been awarded over £2.5m of funding for his research from research councils, the EU, charities and a number of multinational industrial organisations. His research is focused on presbyopia and the restoration of ocular accommodation to the ageing eye.

Professor Davies has successfully supervised 15 PhDs/ professional doctorates, 7 PDRAs and has acted as an external examiner for PhD and professional doctorate theses nationally and internationally. In recognition of his experience and expertise in the field of physiological optics he has been invited to speak and present at various events and conferences including the American Academy of Optometry; Association of French Optometrists; College of Optometrists; Royal Society; and the University of Tϋbingen, Germany. He is a recipient of the College of Optometrists Research Fellowship Award and the inaugural Neil Charman Medal for research excellence in optometry, optics and vision science.

Areas of Expertise (7)

Visual Function Following Stroke

Ophthalmic Instrumentation

Intraocular Lens (IOL) Technology


Ocular Accommodation

Ocular Biometry


Education (2)

Aston University: PhD, Physiological Optics 2004

Aston University: BSc, Optometry 2000

Media Appearances (2)

Virtual talks, charity fundraising and cross-university collaboration

Optometry Today  online


Optometry schools around the UK usually take it in turns to host BCOVS, and it was originally going to be held at Aston University this year. The decision to share the organisational role originated when Professor Leon Davies, head of Aston Optometry School, and I initially discussed moving the conference to a virtual platform. We thought it would be a great opportunity to allow input and positive contributions from a wider range of people, and because it’s a completely new venture for BCOVS, it seemed sensible to seek advice. The aim was to get a representative from every optometry school, but we’re still a few short so if you’re reading this and you don’t think your department has a representative yet, please get in touch.

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College of Optometrists appoints new president and council members

Optician Online  online


Professor Leon Davies from Aston University was announced as vice president at the event, with Prab Bopari elected as trustee, Mark Redhead as lay trustee and Dr Gillian Ruddock re-elected as chair of the education and standards committee.

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Articles (5)

Accommodative dynamics and attention: the influence of manipulating attentional capacity on accommodative lag and variability

Ophthalmic and Physiological Optics

2020 There is evidence that attention can modulate ocular dynamics, but its effects on accommodative dynamics have yet to be fully determined. We investigated the effects of manipulating the capacity to focus on task‐relevant stimuli, using two levels of dual‐tasking (arithmetic task) and auditory feedback, on the accommodative dynamics at three different target distances (500, 40 and 20 cm).

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Long-term efficacy and safety of solifenacin in pediatric patients aged 6 months to 18 years with neurogenic detrusor overactivity: results from two phase 3 prospective open-label studies

Journal of Pediatric Urology

2020 The standard recommended treatment for neurogenic detrusor overactivity (NDO) is clean intermittent catheterization combined with an antimuscarinic agent. However, the adverse systemic side-effects of oxybutynin, the most widely used agent, are of concern.

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Effects of Optical Correction Method on the Magnitude and Variability of Accommodative Response: A Test-retest Study

Optometry and Vision Science

2019 The present study addresses the accommodative response and its dependence on the type of optical correction used. The results are discussed relative to their possible implications for myopia progression and visual fatigue.

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Presbyopia: Effectiveness of correction strategies

Progress in Retinal and Eye Research

2019 Presbyopia is a global problem affecting over a billion people worldwide. The prevalence of unmanaged presbyopia is as high as 50% of those over 50 years of age in developing world populations, due to a lack of awareness and accessibility to affordable treatment, and is even as high as 34% in developed countries. Definitions of presbyopia are inconsistent and varied, so we propose a redefinition that states “presbyopia occurs when the physiologically normal age-related reduction in the eye's focusing range reaches a point, when optimally corrected for distance vision, that the clarity of vision at near is insufficient to satisfy an individual's requirements”.

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Optical Coherence Tomography Reveals Sigmoidal Crystalline Lens Changes during Accommodation


2018 This study aimed to quantify biometric modifications of the anterior segment (AS) during accommodation and to compare them against changes in both accommodative demand and response. Thirty adults, aged 18–25 years were rendered functionally emmetropic with contact lenses. AS optical coherence tomography (AS-OCT) images were captured along the 180° meridian (Visante, Zeiss Meditec, Jena, Germany) under stimulated accommodative demands (0–4 D). Images were analysed and lens thickness (LT) was measured, applying a refractive index correction of 1.00.

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