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D. Pauleikhoff, M. Dietzel, B. Heimes, M. Trieschmann, H.-W. Hense; Macular Pigment in Relationship to AMD. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2007;48(13):4017.
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Different concentrations of Macular Pigment measured as Macular Pigment Optical Density (MPOD) are suggested to be related with the risk for the developement of early and late age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The purpose of the present study was to investigate this relationship due to a comparison of MPOD in an epidemiological study on the progression of early AMD and in age-matched controlls.
In a subgroup of a large epidemiological survey of the progression of early AMD (Muenster Aging and Retina Study MARS) MPOD was investigated with two-wavelength autofluorescence analysis (central at 0.5degree and peripheral at 2 degree). This group consisted of 237 patients with early AMD at least in one eye (mean age 71y.). MPOD was correlated with age, gender, BMI and serum concentrations for lutein (L) and zeaxanthin (Z) and was compared with MPOD of an age-matched control group of 137 individuals without signs of early AMD.
In the group of patients with early AMD MPOD increased significantly with age, were higher in female than in male, decreased with higher BMI and smoking and demonstrated a significant correlation with serum concentrations for L and Z. Comparing MPOD between both groups patients with early AMD had a mean central MPOD of 0.57 vs 0.52 in the control group (p=.012) and a mean peripheral MPOD of 0.16 vs 0.14 (p=.038). But after adjustment for age, gender, BMI, smoking, L+Z serum concentrations and also for active or past history of L and Z supplementation the central MPOD was 0.53 in the early AMD and 0.53 in the control group (p=.866). Also the peripheral MPOD was similiar with 0.15 for the early AMD group and 0.14 for the control group (p=.819).
The present analysis of MPOD in patients with early AMD compared to MPOD in age-matched controlls could not demonstrate a relationship between central or peripheral MPOD and early AMD. Therefore these parameters are not sufficient to support the concept of MP being an important risk factor for AMD. This can not exclude that possible other characteristics of MP like the spatial distribution of MP or genetically determined factors for the MP metabolism in the retina may be important factors for a associated relationship between MP and AMD
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