Anna Neustaeter

Supervisors: Prof. Nomdo Jansonius (Ophthalmology); Prof. Harold Snieder (Epidemiology)

Background & Interests

My name is Anna Neustaeter and I am from Ontario, Canada. I obtained my Bachelor’s degree at the University of Guelph in Animal Biology with a heavy emphasis on animal breeding and genetics. I also completed my Master’s degree at the University of Guelph; my thesis

examined the genetic aspect of Spastic Syndrome in North American Holstein cattle. This included – but was not limited to – a genome-wide association study (GWAS), in silico and functional analyses of significantly associated regions/genes in the genome, and heritability

estimates of the disorder in the general Holstein herd. These analyses may pave the way to changes in the current breeding program to eventually decrease the incidence of Spastic Syndrome in the general Holstein population.

My research interests revolve around the genetic analyses of adult-onset neurodegenerative/neuromuscular disorders in all animals

(including humans).

Aim of the project

In the general population, the prevalence of glaucoma in adult Caucasians is low (approximately 2%) thus periodic screening for the disease is not cost-effective. The aim of this project is to develop a robust risk profile for glaucoma, using questionnaire and genetic data from LifeLines, the population-based study in the Netherlands. INSERT WHY In addition, we aim to create a genetic risk score (GRS) from associated loci in the genome with genotyped individuals from the Lifelines consortia. With the GRS we will screen a subset of the general population for those at high/low risk for glaucoma, and invite selected individuals for ophthalmic examination. The accuracy of the GRS predicting those with early stages of glaucoma will be a step towards personalized medicine, where those with a higher genetic risk for a disorder can be effectively screened earlier


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