Dr. Sayoko Moroi

Sayoko E. Moroi, MD, PhD

Jerome Jacobson Professorship in Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences
Professor, Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences
Academic Office: 734-763-3732

Areas of Interest

Research Areas

Research Summary

Molecular pharmacology of glaucoma medications; aqueous humor dynamics; pharmacogenetics; genetics; glaucoma treatment and surgery outcomes

Glaucoma is one of several eye diseases in which individuals may progress to vision loss as a consequence of limitations in current treatments. Some specific treatment limitations include patient compliance, poor response to medication, drug-related side effects, unaffordable health care cost, and challenging surgical procedures. The goal of Dr. Moroi’s laboratory is to develop more effective interventions for glaucoma and to prevent patients from progressing to an advanced stage of vision loss. 

  1. Dr. Moroi's primary interest is in translational research which has direct implications for improving patient care and treatment outcomes. 
  2. It is well known that patients vary in their response to medications and their side effects. It is important to understand the mechanisms for these variable responses. Dr. Moroi uses pharmacogenetic approaches to determine whether a patient's response to medication is affected by specific gene variations, called single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Using fluorophotometry to measure aqueous humor flow, she can compare interindividual variation in this physiological trait and variation in response to glaucoma medications. This research will ultimately allow physicians to determine the optimal medical treatment for the patient with glaucoma, perhaps using a gene chip platform.

Clinical Interests

Glaucoma, inherited glaucomas, clinical trials (co-investigator OHTS, pharmacology clinical trials), complementary and alternative medicine, medical compliance

Subspecialty: Glaucoma

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Honors & Awards


  • Clinical Study, A Prospective, Double-Masked, Randomized, Multicenter, Placebo-Controlled, Parallel-Group Study Assessing the Safety and Ocular Hypotensive Efficacy and Optimum Concentration to Be Used Clinically of Netarsudil Ophthalmic Solution in Japanese/Japanese-American Subjects with Open-Angle Glaucoma or Ocular Hypertension in the United States, INC Research/Aerie Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
  • Committee Member, American Academy of Ophthalmology
  • Glaucoma Visiting Professor, University of California, Davis
  • Invited Lecture, Harold Gifford, Jr., MD Lecture, Current Concepts in Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Annual Gifford-Truhlsen Conference
  • Keynote Speaker, "Making Connections Between Population-based Genetics and IOP", 30thAnnual Glaucoma Celebration, Duke Eye Center


  • Co-chair, Surgery Day, American Glaucoma Society
  • Program Planning Committee, American Glaucoma Society
  • Study Section, Bioengineering of Neuroscience, Vision and Low Vision Technologies, National Institutes of Health
  • Therapy Development in Canine Modules of Open-Angle Glaucoma, Michigan State University/National Institutes of Health


  • Medical and Graduate School - Ohio State University, 1989
  • Residency - Ophthalmology, Duke University Eye Center, 1993
  • Fellowships
    • Glaucoma Research Fellowship
      Duke University, 1994
    • Glaucoma Clinical Fellowship
      University of Michigan, 1995

Published Articles or Reviews

Web Sites