September 2012
Volume 53, Issue 10
Free
Letters to the Editor  |   September 2012
Author Response: Profiles of Macular Pigment Optical Density and Their Changes following Supplemental Lutein and Zeaxanthin
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Meike Zeimer
    Institute of Ophthalmology, St. Franziskus Hospital, Münster, Germany; and
  • Martha Dietzel
    Institute of Ophthalmology, St. Franziskus Hospital, Münster, Germany; and
  • Hans-Werner Hense
    Institute of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, University of Münster, Münster, Germany.
  • Daniel Pauleikhoff
    Institute of Ophthalmology, St. Franziskus Hospital, Münster, Germany; and
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science September 2012, Vol.53, 6304. doi:10.1167/iovs.12-10780
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      Meike Zeimer, Martha Dietzel, Hans-Werner Hense, Daniel Pauleikhoff; Author Response: Profiles of Macular Pigment Optical Density and Their Changes following Supplemental Lutein and Zeaxanthin. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(10):6304. doi: 10.1167/iovs.12-10780.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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  • Supplements
We thank Nolan and Beatty 1 for the appreciation of our recent paper. 2 They raise an interesting issue by pointing out that they do not share our interpretation of the data reported in the study by Dietzel et al. 3 with regard to the impact of macular pigment on age-related macular degeneration (AMD). We concur with their statement that casual relationships are difficult to infer from cross-sectional studies and that they principally deserve a note of caution. Moreover, the effects of over-the-counter supplements available in Germany may have confounded the results of Dietzel et al., 3 despite all efforts of control and statistical adjustment. In fact, Nolan and Beatty also indicate the direction from which new insight and better understanding will accrue: it will be necessary to study people free of AMD (or possibly at the very early stages) and then follow them longitudinally to find out how macular pigment optical density (MPOD) levels and distribution interact with the occurrence of AMD. The studies by Nolan et al. 4 and Kirby et al. 5 show one way of doing this, using surrogate measures of AMD. We suppose that future work in cohort studies, like the Muenster Aging and Retina Study (MARS), 3 should be able to further elucidate these associations and distinguish causality from coincidence or reverse causality. 
References
Nolan J Beatty S. Profiles of macular pigment optical density and their changes following supplemental lutein and zeaxanthin. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci . 2012;53:6303. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Zeimer M Dietzel M Hense HW Heimes B Austermann U Pauleikhoff D. Profiles of macular pigment optical density and their changes following supplemental lutein and zeaxanthin: new results from The LUNA Study. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci . 2012;53:4852–4859. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Dietzel M Zeimer M Heimes B Pauleikhoff D Hense HW. The ringlike structure of macular pigment in age-related maculopathy: results from the Muenster Aging and Retina Study (MARS). Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci . 2011;52:8016–8024. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Nolan JM Stack J, O'Donovan O, Loane E, Beatty S. Risk factors for age-related maculopathy are associated with a relative lack of macular pigment. Exp Eye Res . 2007;84:61–74. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
Kirby ML Beatty S Loane E A Central dip in the macular pigment spatial profile is associated with age and smoking. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci . 2010;51:6722–6728. [CrossRef] [PubMed]
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