My career goal is to become a leader in the application of imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) to the study of health problems of significance to New Zealand. To achieve this, I will enable established research groups to use IMS, while following an independent research programme that uses this technology to visualise the role that small molecules and metabolites play in the development of lens cataracts, the world's most prevalent form of blindness. Preliminary data suggest that metabolic compartments exist in the lens, the composition of which change in cataractous lenses. By applying IMS to identify and map the spatial distribution of metabolites in normal and cataractous lenses, I will elucidate the metabolic processes that lead to lens cataracts and determine whether therapeutic intervention can restore metabolic compartments and prevent cataracts. Results from this project will inform the development of therapeutic strategies to delay cataract progression, reducing costs and improving health outcomes.