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Gina Forma, Giovannella Carboni, Barbara J. Jennings, Alessandro Iannaccone; Measures Of Macular Function After Dietary Supplementation With Zeaxanthin (Zx). Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(14):3637.
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To study the effect of a 4-month (mo), 20mg/daily Zx supplementation (EyePromise-Ten, ZeaVision) on psychophysical and electrophysiological measures of macular function in healthy non-smoking White participants.
Measurements were performed at baseline (BL), after 4-mo [follow-up visit 4 (FUV4)] Zx supplementation and after a 4-mo wash out [follow-up visit 8 (FUV8)], in 24 participants (59.5±7.5 years old; range: 50-81; M/F=9/15, BMI ≤30). Tests included: contrast sensitivity (CS) to Pelli-Robson charts; P50 amplitude of the pattern-reversal electroretinogram (PERG) to 45 minarc, 100% contrast, B&W, 2.0-Hz stimuli; dark-adapted foveal cone sensitivity at 650nm (DA-650 FCS); and parafoveal (2-deg eccentricity) rod sensitivity at 500nm (DA-500 PFRS), measured with a custom-modified Humphrey perimeter. Averages, correlations, inter-gender comparisons, and percent variations (Δ%) were calculated.
Mean CS was unchanged at FUV4 for the group as a whole and for M/F separately. At FUV8, there was a small but significant mean CS increase for the group as whole (p-value for paired, 2-tailed t-test=0.012) and in females (p=0.011). No change occurred in CS for males. A 14% average PERG P50 increase at FUV4 was observed (p=0.0006), followed by a partial decline in this improvement after wash-out (FUV8: +6% on average vs. BL, p=0.045). There was no effect in either direction on DA-650 FCS after either 4-mo supplementation (BL: 31.3±1.6 dB; FUV4: 31.0±2.3 dB) or after washout (FUV8: 31.2±2.2 dB). Likewise, there was no effect in either direction on DA-500 PFRS after either 4-mo supplementation (BL: 41.8±2.6 dB; FUV4: 41.4±2.6 dB) or after washout (FUV8: 41.9±2.5 dB). There were no inter-gender differences in these two outcomes. BL PERG P50 amplitudes and DA-500 PFRS were inversely correlated to their Δ% observed at FUV4 and FUV8, whereas BL DA-650 FCS was weakly but directly correlated to the Δ% seen at FUV4 and FUV8.
Consistent with our predictions, PERG P50 amplitude exhibited an increase during active supplementation that regressed only partially after discontinuation of Zx. While the observed changes are small, their direction was consistent and, for some changes, they were highly significant, providing proof of principle that Zx can improve macular performance even in healthy subjects. Further studies on larger samples inclusive of patients with macular disease will be necessary to confirm and expand our findings from this pilot investigation.
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