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Olachi Mezu-Ndubuisi, M.D., O.D.

Contact Information

Phone Numbers

Office: (585) 275-2972

Fax: (585) 461-3614

URMFGA member of the University of Rochester Medical Faculty Group

groupAn Accountable Health Partner

assignmentAccepting New Patients

Research Labs

Faculty Appointments

Patient Care Setting



Professional Background

Dr. Olachi Mezu-Ndubuisi is a neonatologist as well as a licensed optometrist. Dr. Mezu-Ndubuisi is passionate about bench-to-bedside translational research, with a humanistic goal of developing safer therapies and informing new paradigms of more effective clinical management strategies. Her clinical interest include retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD) in premature babies, and improving nutrition in very low birth weight babies in the NICU. She is actively involved in research on global health disparities and participates in humanitarian international medical outreach, as well as mentoring medical and clinical trainees in global health research. Dr. Mezu-Ndubuisi is committed to an academic pathway that integrates research, teaching, and service activities, in order to make the most impact in pediatric retina research and global health outcomes.


Dr. Mezu-Ndubuisi’s early interest in vision science is based on her belief that the eyes provide a unique window to the body to directly visualize retinal blood vessels, and could be used as a biomarker to monitor systemic diseases in the body. Dr. Mezu-Ndubuisi’s research focus is ROP, a potentially blinding eye disease of multi-factorial origin affecting premature infants exposed to postnatal hyperoxia, characterized by abnormal retinal vascularization. There is no known drug cure for ROP. Current treatments such as laser therapy and intravitreal bevacizumab, an anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) antibody, are limited in efficacy due to systemic toxicities, and have long term adverse effects. Therefore, ROP remains a leading cause of childhood blindness worldwide. Her research studies in ROP have been fueled by this dire need for more effective therapies.

Dr. Mezu-Ndubuisi’s research studies led to the novel use of in-vivo phosphorescence lifetime imaging to measure retinal vascular oxygen tension and fluorescein angiography (FA) to depict retinal vascular abnormalities in a mouse model of oxygen-induced retinopathy (OIR). The Mezu-Ndubuisi laboratory has established in vivo retinal imaging techniques in a mouse model of OIR model that have defined unique vascular, structural and functional phenotypes in ROP, which they have correlated to histopathological evidence of neuroglia dysfunction. Her lab has expanded the use of live non-invasive optical imaging techniques to study retinal development in neonatal mice, as well as investigate the role of oxidative stress on other developing tissues, like the brain, lungs, and kidneys. Dr. Mezu-Ndubuisi’s lab is currently investigating new mechanisms of ROP pathogenesis in order to discover novel therapies, that could potentially prevent severity and progression of ROP, while avoiding systemic toxicity. One of the on-going projects is studying the efficacy and mechanism of dual therapy of intravitreal VEGF-A microparticles and topical calcitriol to restore the vascular, structural, and functional OIR phenotype.



MD | Ross University School of Medicine-Dominica (Dominica)

Post-doctoral Training & Residency

03/01/2011 - 11/01/2013
Fellowship in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine at University of Illinois College of Medicine-Chicago

07/01/2006 - 05/13/2008
Fellowship in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine at University of Maryland Medical Center

07/01/2004 - 06/30/2006
Residency in Pediatrics at Louisiana State University-Shreveport GME

07/01/2003 - 06/30/2004
Internship in Pediatrics at Louisiana State University-Shreveport GME

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2021 - 2026
Career Development Award (K08)
Sponsor: National Eye Institute/ National Institute of Health

2021 - 2024
McPherson Eye Research Institute's Retina Research Foundation Edwin and Dorothy Gamewell Professor
Sponsor: Retina Research Foundation

2018 - 2019
Pediatric Research Loan Repayment Award
Sponsor: National Eye Institute/National Institute of Health

Young Investigator Award
Sponsor: Society of Pediatric Research (SPR)

Fellow, American Academy of Optometry
Sponsor: American Academy of Optometry (AAO)

2015 - 2017
Pediatric Research Loan Repayment Award
Sponsor: National Eye Institute/National Institute of Health

ROP Star of the Month
Sponsor: Shire ROPP-2008 International Clinical Trial
Location: Newsletter

Centennial Scholars Program Award
Sponsor: University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health

RRF/Joseph M. and Eula C. Lawrence Award and Travel Grant
Sponsor: Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO)

Minority Research Award/Certificate
Location: San Diego, CA

Young Investigator's Award
Sponsor: Pediatric Academic Society (PAS)

Mead Johnson Fellow's Research Travel Grant
Sponsor: American Academy of Pediatrics Developmental Medicine Symposium
Location: Aspen, Colorado

First Prize, Dr. Nwaba Optometry Award for Excellence

Best Clinician Award
Sponsor: Nigerian Optometric Association (NOA)

Best Graduating Student, School of Optometry
Sponsor: Abia State University, Uturu Nigeria

Graduated Summa cum laude
Sponsor: Abia State University Nigeria

Female Motivator Award
Sponsor: Nigerian Federation of Catholic Students (NFCS)
Location: Abia State University, Nigeria

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Journal Articles

Zafer D, Adams T, Olson E, Stenman L, Taparli O, Eickhoff J, Cengiz P, Mezu-Ndubuisi O. "Retinal Vascular Recovery revealed by retinal imaging following neonatal hypoxia ischemia in mice: is there a role for tyrosine kinase receptor modulation?" Brain research.. 2022 Sep 15; :148093. Epub 2022 Sep 15.

Mezu-Ndubuisi OJ, Song YS, Macke E, Johnson H, Nwaba G, Ikeda A, Sheibani N. "Retinopathy of prematurity shows alterations in Vegfa isoform expression." Pediatric research.. 2022 Jun; 91(7):1677-1685. Epub 2021 Jul 20.

Mezu-Ndubuisi OJ, Maheshwari A. "Role of the Endothelium in Neonatal Diseases." . 2022 1(1):44-57. Epub 2022 Mar 31.

Books & Chapters

Chapter Title: Visual Disorders
Book Title: Maxcy-Rosenau-Last Public Health & Preventive Medicine
Author List: Hariharan L, Starr E, Garcia R, Penniecook JA, Pettey J, Hanson E, Morjaria P, Noah J, Haddad D, Mezu-Ndubuisi OJ, Winthrop KL, Ventura CV, Lansingh V.
Edited By: Boulton ML, Wallace RB.
Published By: McGraw Hill 2022

Chapter Title: Communicating Bad News in the Health Care Organization
Book Title: Management and Leadership – A Guide for Clinical Professionals.
Author List: Mezu-Ndubuisi, Olachi J
Published By: Springer International Publishing 2015

Chapter Title: Developmental Immunology
Book Title: Neonatal- Perinatal Medicine: Diseases of the Fetus and Infant
Author List: Benjamin JT, Mezu-Ndubuisi OJ, Maheshwari A
Edited By: Faranoff, Martin & Walsh
Published By: Elsevier, MO 2014