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Martha Dietzel, Meike Zeimer, Britta Heimes, Daniel Pauleikhoff, Hans-Werner Hense; 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(11):8016-8024. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/iovs.11-7610.
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The role of macular pigment (MP) in age-related maculopathy (ARM) is still not clearly understood. Recent studies have reported on variations in the spatial distribution of MP optical density (MPOD) including a secondary peak (“ring”) in the slope of the MPOD profile. The authors investigated in a cross-sectional manner the presence of ringlike structures, their determinants, and their relationship with ARM.
In all, 369 participants of the Muenster Aging and Retina Study were examined using dual-wavelength analysis of autofluorescence images. ARM was graded using digital fundus photographs according to the International Classification System.
A ringlike structure was observed in 73 (19.8%) study participants. The MP maximum of the ring was located on average at 0.85° and the minimum at 0.48° from the center of the fovea. Their concordance between pairs of eyes was highly significant. MPOD measured at eccentricities of 0°, 0.25°, and 0.5° from the fovea was significantly lower in eyes with ringlike structure, whereas it was significantly higher at 1.0° and 2.0° than that in eyes without the ring. Ringlike structures were significantly more common in females and never smokers and were found significantly less often in eyes with ARM than in healthy eyes, even after adjustment for influential factors (adjusted odds ratio, 0.347; 95% confidence interval, 0.196–0.617).
Ringlike structures in the MP spatial profile are fairly common, show a high degree of bilaterality, and appeared inversely related with ARM.
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