Nigus Asefa


Project title Early stage researcher Supervisor Location
Heritability of eye diseases Nigus G. Asefa Prof. dr. Harold Snieder

Prof. dr. Nomdo Jansonius

University Medical Center, Groningen, RUG


My name is Nigus G. Asefa, originally from Ethiopia. In 2007, I graduated with B. Pharm (BSc.) from Addis Ababa University. After this, I worked in a hospital as pharmacy head and then moved to a health science college, where I worked for most of my time as a tutor. In 2014, I studied MPH in Mekelle University. I have research experience in pharmaceutical formulation, road traffic crash, and reproductive health. In collaboration with Lund University (Sweden), I have also worked in a reproductive health project. I have a deep interest in scientific research, especially these researches that can improve the health of the human beings.

Many noncommunicable diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, glaucoma, and obesity do not have a single cause; they are more likely associated with genetic and environmental factors and the interaction between them. People’s subtle differences in genetic factors cause them to respond differently when they are exposed to the same causal environment/agent.  As a result, these disorders are difficult to study and treat because the specific factors that cause most of these disorders have not yet been fully identified. The aim of this project is to determine the heritability of eye diseases and the potential factors (genetic, biomedical, socio-demographic, behavioral, physical, and psychological factors) that can significantly affect the proportion of variation in glaucoma and other eye diseases development, in Lifelines cohort. In a number of sub-studies, we will investigate the controversial relationship of low blood pressure and heart rate variability as a risk factor for glaucoma. This may help in developing new strategies for the prevention and treatment of these disorders.

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