Glaucoma-related neurodegeneration is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide. Monitoring the progression of this disease is challenging, as most available approaches are limited in their ability to quantify disease severity and predict patient responses to interventions. There is a critical need to identify specific molecular markers that predict success of intervention and enable early implementation or alteration of therapy. Currently, no such marker exists. My research aims to characterize growth differentiation factor 15 (GDF-15), a novel molecular marker, and has the potential to introduce new metrics for glaucoma testing and management.