The Forefront of Ocular Nutrition: AstaReal® Astaxanthin for Front-of-the-Eye Health

Food, Food Ingredients & Innovations,
  • Wednesday, May 19, 2021

The visual system is one of the highest energy consuming systems in the body, with ion pumps in photoreceptors alone estimated to consume 1 billion ATP per second(1). This makes the eyes an important site of mitochondrial activity, which exposes eyes to a considerable amount of free radical by-products. Exposure to environmental triggers of free radical production, such as high energy light, low humidity, and digital device usage, are also a consideration for eye doctors and consumers concerned with maintaining healthy eyes. As lifestyles shift towards more time spent working and learning from home, the approach to ocular nutrition and supplement formulation needs to keep up with the times.

This webinar will focus on the emerging ocular carotenoid, natural astaxanthin, which helps support energy-consuming eye muscles at the front of the eye. Speakers Dr. Jeffry Gerson, O.D., F.A.A.O., and Dr. Karen Hecht, Scientific Affairs Manager at AstaReal Inc., will discuss the science and application of this front-of-the-eye nutrient in the context of existing and future formulations for visual support. The presentation will include a summary of AstaReal® Astaxanthin studies examining effects on accommodative function, eye strain in the digital world, and emerging research related to dry eye. Dr. Gerson will address new trends and challenges in ocular nutrition, and Dr. Hecht will review the variety of AstaReal® Astaxanthin delivery forms and applications on the market today, and future directions for this powerhouse antioxidant.


(1)  Linton, J.D. et al. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences May 2010, 107 (19) 8599-8604.


Dr. Karen A. Hecht, AstaReal Inc.

Dr. Karen A. Hecht, Scientific Affairs Manager, AstaReal Inc.

Dr. Karen Hecht is the scientific affairs manager at AstaReal Inc. Dr. Hecht worked as a postdoctoral associate in algal molecular biology at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. She earned her Ph.D. in Biology at the University of Pittsburgh.

Message Presenter
Dr. Jeffry D. Gerson, O.D., F.A.A.O.

Dr. Jeffry D. Gerson, O.D., F.A.A.O.

Dr. Jeffry Gerson graduated from Indiana University school of Optometry in 1997, after which he went on to do a VA residency concentrating in low vision and ocular disease. He has been in several different practice settings, including a retina referral practice where he participated in several large clinical trials.

Currently, Dr Gerson is in private practice that is a collaboration of both OD’s and MD’s. He sees primary care patients, and has an emphasis on retinal care in his practice.  He enjoys having 4th year optometry interns with him and the challenges that they present.  He still participates in clinical trials and utilizes many different diagnostic modalities.

Dr. Gerson is a frequent lecturer in the US and abroad, and writes regularly for optometric publications.

Message Presenter

Who Should Attend?

Eye doctors & optometrists

Professors & Graduate students

Product Development
CEO of Start-Ups
Chief Innovation Officers
Technology Leads
R&D Innovation
Scientific & Clinical Affair Manager/Officer
Principle Scientist
Director of Product Development
Brand Manager
Technical Services Manager

What You Will Learn

  • How AstaReal Natural Astaxanthin supports ocular nutrition for the increasing amount of digital device usage
  • Dr. Karen Hecht & Dr. Jeffry Gerson will speak about the front of the eye health and trends and how natural astaxanthin can help accommodative function, eye strain in the digital world, and emerging research related to dry eye

Xtalks Partner


AstaReal is the world’s leading producer and innovator of natural astaxanthin. AstaReal Inc. is part of the AstaReal Group which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fuji Chemical Industries Co., Ltd. AstaReal Inc. is a sales and marketing company servicing North and South America. Our natural astaxanthin is cultivated, grown and harvested in our manufacturing facility in Moses Lake, Washington and Sweden. The commercial pioneer of natural astaxanthin cultivation backed by over 60 human clinical studies, AstaReal has over 30+ years of research and innovation. AstaReal is also USP, Non-GMO, ISO, HACCP, Halal, and Kosher certified, NSF GMP Registered, and has approved Health Canada claims.

From cultivation to extraction, AstaReal® Astaxanthin is made in the USA to ensure the best quality and traceability. Our proprietary closed, indoor cultivation technique is unique to the industry and the only one of its kind in North America and ensures the highest quality natural astaxanthin on the market.

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