MERIT and Mianus Capital Announce Formation of Ophthalmology Scientific Advisory Council

The Scientific Advisory Council will advise MERIT and Mianus on cutting edge technology and treatments to keep the firms aligned with market needs and assist with fulfilling their mission of driving innovation in life sciences.


Madison, WI – October 25, 2023 – MERIT CRO, Inc., and Mianus Capital today announced the creation of a new joint Scientific Advisory Council (SAC) consisting of some of the most respected innovators and experts in the field of ophthalmology. Together, the firms’ and advisers’ work will advance and accelerate the improvement of therapeutic options for patients worldwide.


“We are proud to work with this prestigious group of industry leaders that provides unparalleled experience in both clinical research and innovation,” said Yijun Huang, CEO of MERIT. “Leveraging these partnerships will lead to breakthroughs in ophthalmology that will significantly improve people’s vision and quality of life.”


“Having been built by insiders of the drug development ecosystem, our CRO+VC platform offers deep access to KOLs and PIs who are at the forefront of biotech innovation,” said Steve Yang, Founder and CEO of Mianus Capital. “The profound interactions with our advisors will provide insights into the ophthalmology, pharma, and biotech industry landscapes to support early-stage investments, which will also lead to transformational new technologies and treatments.”


Scientific Advisory Council Members:

  • Robert Avery, MD. California Retina Consultants, Santa Barbara, California. Founding Partner, Director of Clinical Research, Appointment in the Neuroscience Research Institute; University of California, Santa Barbara, Founder of the California Retina Research Foundation
  • David S. Boyer, MD. Retina Vitreous Associates Medical Group, Beverly Hills, California. Senior Partner, Clinical Faculty at the Doheny Eye Institute, USC School of Medicine
  • David Brown, MD. Retina Consultants of Texas, Houston, Texas. Founding Partner, Director of Clinical Research, Director of the Greater Houston Retina Research Center, Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology at Baylor College of Medicine, Vice-Chair for Research; Blanton Eye Institute at Houston Methodist Hospital
  • Antonio Capone Jr., MD. Associated Retina Consultants, Royal Oak, Michigan. Professor of Biomedical Sciences at Oakland University, and Professor at the European School for Advanced Studies in Ophthalmology, Lugano, Switzerland, Co-Director of the Vision Research-ROPARD Foundation, Co-Director of the Associated Retinal Consultants Vitreoretinal Fellowship Training Program
  • Mark S. Humayun, MD, PhD. USC Roski Eye Institute, Los Angelas, California. University Professor of Ophthalmology, Cornelius J. Pings Chair in Biomedical Sciences, Director, Institute for Biomedical Therapeutics, Co-Director USC Roski Eye Institute
  • Arshad M. Khanani, MD, MA, FASRS. Sierra Eye Associates, Reno, Nevada. Managing Partner, Director of Clinical Research, Director of Fellowship, Clinical Associate Professor, University of Nevada Reno School of Medicine, Reno, Nevada
  • Theodore Leng, MD. Stanford University Medical Center, Palo Alto, California. Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Director of Clinical and Translational Research, Director of Ophthalmic Diagnostics
  • Richard L. Lindstrom, MD. Minnesota Eye Consultants, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Founding Partner, Adjunct Professor Emeritus at the University of Minnesota Department of Ophthalmology
  • Carl D. Regillo, MD, FACS, FASRS. Will Eye Hospital, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. Director of the Retina Service; Wills Eye Hospital, Professor of Ophthalmology at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia
  • Charles C. Wykoff, MD., PhD. Retina Consultants of Texas, Houston, Texas. Director of the Retina Consultants of Texas Research Centers, Chairman of the Research and Clinical Trials Committee


  • SriniVas R. Sadda, MD. **Doheny Eye Institute/ Stein Eye Institute, Pasadena, California. President & Chief Scientific Officer, Stephen J. Ryan-Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation Endowed Presidential Chair **(Advisor only to Mianus Capital)


View member bios at


MERIT is an innovative, global clinical trial endpoint services provider working in a variety of therapeutic areas, including ophthalmology, respiratory, oncology, cardiac safety, dermatology, and neurology. We partner with CROs as well as pharmaceutical and biotech companies to deliver reliable endpoint services in multi-regional clinical trials. Together our work advances and accelerates the improvement of therapeutic options for patients worldwide.


MERIT’s offices are in Madison, WI, North Liberty, IA, and Shanghai, China. We have a proven track record of providing endpoint expertise to 13 of the top 20 global pharmaceutical companies, supporting sites in 58 countries around the world.


Mianus Capital was founded in 2015 as a boutique investment firm. Since 2018, Mianus Capital has been focusing on life sciences. It invested in MERIT CRO, affording Mianus Capital a differentiated CRO+VC platform as an insider of the drug development ecosystem. The platform provides a unique advantage for high-quality deal sourcing and deep access to scientific, clinical, and commercial expertise to support its early-stage investments. Our aspiration is to build a premier investment firm consisting of a consortium of specialist VC funds each with domain-specific expertise and insights to drive innovation in life sciences.


We believe that ophthalmology is a medical subspecialty with tremendous opportunities for capital investment due to a combination of the global aging population, significant unmet medical needs, promising breakthrough technologies, strong barriers to entry, and favorable exit opportunities for innovative products.


Learn more about Mianus Capital at