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Moussa A. Zouache

Moussa A. Zouache, PhD

Languages spoken: English

Academic Information

Departments Primary - Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences

Research Interests

  • Age-related Macular Degeneration
  • Engineering in Ophthalmology
  • Transport Phenomena
  • Choroid

Dr. Zouache is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences at the University of Utah. His research involves designing and implementing multidisciplinary approaches to solve complex problems at the interface between clinical ophthalmology, molecular biology, data science and engineering disciplines. His primary research interest is directed towards understanding the etiology and natural history of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of irreversible vision loss worldwide. He is also interested in characterizing transport phenomena – or the exchange of mass, energy, charge and momentum between systems – in the eye in health and how they change in disease.

Dr. Zouache trained as an Engineer in his native France before pursuing advanced degrees in Biology and Health in the United Kingdom. He holds a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences from University College London, UK, where he worked within the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the Institute of Ophthalmology. He has taught many courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels and has given instructional courses designed to foster cross-disciplinary collaborations. As part of his research, Dr Zouache developed a theoretical framework to characterize the blood flow and passive transport in the choriocapillaris, the microvascular bed sustaining the outer part of the retina, which includes the photoreceptors. This framework dramatically improved our understanding of mass transfers across the blood-retinal barrier and their impact on retinal homeostasis.

Dr Zouache currently works on refining our understanding of the etiology and natural history of AMD and developing a mechanistic understanding of the processes driving pathologies associated with this disease. This research is designed to generate a robust understanding of the differential contribution of genetic, biological and environmental factors to AMD onset and course of progression. Dr Zouache's goal is to translate this improved understanding into effective therapeutic strategies and precision medicine for this complex blinding disease.

Education History

Postdoctoral Fellowship University College London
Postdoctoral Fellow
University College London
Graduate Training Cranfield University
École Centrale de Lille

Selected Publications

Journal Article

  1. Williams BL, Zouache MA, Seager NA, Pappas CM, Liu J, Anstadt RA, Hubbard WC, Thomas J, Hageman JL, Mohler J, Richards BT, Hageman GS (2024). Levels of the HtrA1 Protein in Serum and Vitreous Humor Are Independent of Genetic Risk for Age-Related Macular Degeneration at the 10q26 Locus. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci, 65(4), 34. (Read full article)
  2. Faust CD, Klettner CA, Toso M, Hageman GS, Eames I, Luthert PJ, Zouache MA (2024). The vascular geometry of the choriocapillaris is associated with spatially heterogeneous molecular exchange with the outer retina. J Physiol. (Read full article)
  3. Zouache MA, Faust CD, Silvestri V, Akafo S, Lartey S, Mehta R, Carroll J, Silvestri G, Hageman GS, Amoaku WM (2023). Retinal and Choroidal Thickness in an Indigenous Population from Ghana: Comparison with Individuals with European or African Ancestry. Ophthalmol Sci, 4(2), 100386. (Read full article)
  4. Zouache MA, Richards BT, Pappas CM, Anstadt RA, Liu J, Corsetti T, Matthews S, Seager NA, Schmitz-Valckenberg S, Fleckenstein M, Hubbard WC, Thomas J, Hageman JL, Williams BL, Hageman GS (2024). Levels of complement factor H-related 4 protein do not influence susceptibility to age-related macular degeneration or its course of progression. Nat Commun, 15(1), 443. (Read full article)
  5. Amoaku WM, Sampalli A, Silvestri V, Cushley LN, Akafo S, Amissah-Arthur KN, Lartey S, Hageman CN, Hubbard WC, Pappas CM, Zouache MA, Stevenson M, Hageman GS, Silvestri G, Ghana AMD Study Group (2022). Characterization of West African Crystalline Macular Dystrophy in the Ghanaian Population. Ophthalmol Retina. (Read full article)
  6. Schmitz-Valckenberg S, Fleckenstein M, Zouache MA, Pfau M, Pappas C, Hageman JL, Agrn E, Malley C, Keenan TDL, Chew EY, Hageman GS (2022). Progression of Age-Related Macular Degeneration Among Individuals Homozygous for Risk Alleles on Chromosome 1 (CFH-CFHR5) or Chromosome 10 (ARMS2/HTRA1) or Both. JAMA Ophthalmol, 140(3), 252-260. (Read full article)
  7. Pappas CM, Zouache MA, Matthews S, Faust CD, Hageman JL, Williams BL, Richards BT, Hageman GS (2021). Protective chromosome 1q32 haplotypes mitigate risk for age-related macular degeneration associated with the CFH-CFHR5 and ARMS2/HTRA1 loci. Hum Genomics, 15(1), 60. (Read full article)
  8. Williams BL, Seager NA, Gardiner JD, Pappas CM, Cronin MC, Amat di San Filippo C, Anstadt RA, Liu J, Toso MA, Nichols L, Parnell TJ, Eve JR, Bartel PL, Zouache MA, Richards BT, Hageman GS (2021). Chromosome 10q26-driven age-related macular degeneration is associated with reduced levels of HTRA1 in human retinal pigment epithelium. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 118(30). (Read full article)
  9. Zouache MA, Bennion A, Hageman JL, Pappas C, Richards BT, Hageman GS (2020). Macular retinal thickness differs markedly in age-related macular degeneration driven by risk polymorphisms on chromosomes 1 and 10. Sci Rep, 10(1), 21093. (Read full article)
  10. Jacobsen BH, Shah AA, Aggarwal S, Mwanansao C, McFadden M, Zouache MA, Shakoor A (2020). Prevalence of Retinal Diseases and Associated Risk Factors in an African Population From Mwanza, Tanzania. Ophthalmic Surg Lasers Imaging Retina, 51(5), S17-S25. (Read full article)
  11. Zouache MA, Silvestri G, Amoaku WM, Silvestri V, Hubbard WC, Pappas C, Akafo S, Lartey S, Mastey RR, Carroll J, Hageman GS (2020). Comparison of the Morphology of the Foveal Pit Between African and Caucasian Populations. Transl Vis Sci Technol, 9(5), 24. (Read full article)
  12. Zouache MA, Eames I, Klettner CA, Luthert, PJ (2019). Flow and passive transport in planar multipolar flows. J Fluid Mech, 858, 184-227.
  13. Zouache MA, Eames I, Klettner CA, Luthert PJ (2016). Form, shape and function: segmented blood flow in the choriocapillaris. Sci Rep, 6, 35754. (Read full article)
  14. Zouache MA, Eames I, Samsudin A (2016). Allometry and Scaling of the Intraocular Pressure and Aqueous Humour Flow Rate in Vertebrate Eyes. PLoS One, 11(3), e0151490. (Read full article)
  15. Zouache MA, Eames I, Luthert PJ (2015). Blood flow in the choriocapillaris. J Fluid Mech, 774, 37-66.


  1. Becker S, LEcuyer Z, Jones BW, Zouache MA, McDonnell FS, Vinberg F (2024). Modeling complex age-related eye disease. [Review]. Prog Retin Eye Res, 101247. (Read full article)
  2. Zouache MA (2022). Variability in Retinal Neuron Populations and Associated Variations in Mass Transport Systems of the Retina in Health and Aging. [Review]. Front Aging Neurosci, 14, 778404. (Read full article)


  1. Baugh B, Tullis B, Asare AO, Zouache MA, Stagg BC (2023). Ensuring that glaucoma clinical decision support meets the needs of providers and patients. J Med Artif Intell, 6. (Read full article)
  2. Schmitz-Valckenberg S, Zouache MA, Hageman GS, Fleckenstein M (2022). From Genes, Proteins, and Clinical Manifestation: Why Do We Need to Better Understand Age-Related Macular Degeneration? Ophthalmol Sci, 2(2), 100174. (Read full article)