Logo for University of Iowa Health Care This logo represents the University of Iowa Health Care

Michael G. Anderson, PhD

Professor of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences
Professor of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics

Contact Information

3111A MERF
375 Newton Road
Iowa City, IA 52242

3111 MERF
375 Newton Road
Iowa City, IA 52242


BA, Biology, Luther College
PhD, Physiology and Biophysics, University of Iowa
Fellow, The Jackson Laboratory

Education/Training Program Affiliations

Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics PhD, Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Genetics, Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Neuroscience, Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Translational Biomedicine, Medical Scientist Training Program

Center, Program and Institute Affiliations

Institute for Vision Research

Research Summary

Research in my laboratory is aimed at understanding fundamental physiological properties of the eye and the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying a variety of complex eye diseases. Of primary interest are the glaucomas, a leading cause of blindness that affects approximately 70 million people worldwide. Glaucoma typically involves three types of events: molecular insults compromising the anterior chamber, increased intraocular pressure, and neurodegenerative retinal ganglion cell loss. Not surprisingly, the biological relationships linking these events are complex. Our approach for studying these events is founded in functional mouse genetics and supplemented by a variety of molecular, cellular, immunological, and neurobiological techniques. The premise for this approach is that stringently performed genetic studies offer great potential for overcoming the natural biological complexity of glaucoma. Current projects in the lab emphasize glaucoma phenotypes occuring in the front of the eye, including the molecular genetics of pigmentary glaucoma, exfoliative glaucoma, and central corneal thickness. We are also interested in new mouse models of glaucoma and have been studying an early onset form of glaucoma in nee mice that is associated with abnormalities of the aqueous drainage structures. In the long term, these studies will contribute to an increased understanding of eye diseases such as glaucoma, and ultimately to improved human therapies.