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Richard Semba, MD

  • Professor

Departmental Affiliations

Center & Institute Affiliations

Contact Information

400 N. Broadway
Smith Building, M015
Baltimore, Maryland 21287


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MPH, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 1991
MA, Stanford University, 1983
MD, Stanford University, 1983



Dr. Semba is the inaugural W. Richard Green Professor of Ophthalmology at the Wilmer Eye Institute. He holds joint appointments in the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology and the Department of International Health. Dr. Semba received his B.S. from Yale University (1978), M.A. and M.D. from Stanford University (1983), and M.P.H. from Johns Hopkins University (1991). He completed his ophthalmology residency at the Wilmer Eye Institute. Dr. Semba has been a faculty member at Johns Hopkins University since 1987. 

Dr. Semba’s areas of research include the characterization of emerging biomarkers for adverse aging-related outcomes and the application of proteomics and mass spectrometry to the understanding of chronic diseases.

Dr. Semba has over three hundred peer-reviewed scientific publications. He is the author of three books: “Handbook of Nutrition and Ophthalmology” (Humana Press, 2007), "The Vitamin A Story: Lifting the Shadow of Death" (Karger, 2012), and (with co-author Kristine Smets) "A Perfect Vision: Catalogue of the William Holland Wilmer Rare Book Collection" (Johns Hopkins, 2013). Dr. Semba is co-editor (with Martin Bloem) of the widely used textbook “Nutrition and Health in Developing Countries” (Humana Press, first edition, 2001; second edition, 2008).

Honors and Awards

Lew R. Wasserman Merit Award from Research to Prevent Blindness (2006)

W. Richard Green Professor of Ophthalmology (2007-present)

  • aging
  • age-related macular degeneration
  • diabetes
  • diabetic retinopathy
  • eye diseases
  • proteins
  • proteomics
  • mass spectrometry
  • metabolomics
  • lipidomics
  • sarcopenia
  • systems biology
  • vitamin A
  • vitamins
  • 2012

  • Semba RD, Sun K, Cappola AR, Fink JC, Dalal M, Crasto C, Ferrucci L, Fried LP. Elevated serum fibroblast growth factor 23 predicts incident chronic kidney disease in older community-dwelling women. Clin J Am Soc Nephrol 2012; 7: 85-91.

  • Semba RD. The historical evolution of thought regarding multiple micronutrient nutrition. J Nutr 2012; 142: 143S-156S.

  • Semba RD, Sun K, Egan JM, Crasto C, Carlson OD, Ferrucci L. Elevated serum fibroblast growth factor 21 is associated with abnormal glucose metabolism and insulin resistance: the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2012; Feb 16 [Epub ahead of print].

  • 2011