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Tina I. Tsai, Bang V. Bui, Algis J. Vingrys; Effect of Acute Intraocular Pressure Challenge on Rat Retinal and Cortical Function. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(2):1067-1077. doi: 10.1167/iovs.13-13003.
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The global or gross response index of visual performance measured from the eye does not necessarily translate to global responses measured from the brain. A better understanding of this relationship would facilitate the monitoring of disease models that affect the visual pathway. We consider whether rod- and cone-retino-cortical-pathways are equally affected by acute IOP elevation.
Acute, stepwise IOP elevation (10, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70 mm Hg) was induced in anesthetized dark- (N = 8) and light-adapted pigmented rats (N = 6). Electroretinogram (ERG) and visual evoked potentials (VEP) were simultaneously measured after 10 minutes at each step. Relative amplitudes (treated/baseline, %) as a function of IOP level were described with a cumulative normal function.
Our results showed decline in scotopic and photopic ERGs with IOP elevation. Photopic ERG responses were less sensitive to IOP challenge than scotopic ERG responses. Despite significant reductions of ganglion cell–mediated waveforms at 70 mm Hg, the VEP showed only subtle decreases in amplitude. Intraocular pressure elevation produced similar effects on rod- and cone-mediated VEP waveforms.
We show that cone signals are less sensitive than rod ERGs to acute IOP challenge. Also, retinal signals are more sensitive than are cortical signals to IOP stress, suggesting that cortical processing may act to salvage reductions expected from attenuated retinal output.
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