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L. Ho, R. van Leeuwen, J. C. M. Witteman, C. M. van Duijn, A. G. Uitterlinden, A. Hofman, P. T. V. M. de Jong, J. R. Vingerling, C. C. W. Klaver; Can Dietary Antioxidants Reduce the Genetic Risk of Early Age-Related Macular Degeneration?. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2009;50(13):1666.
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Genetic risk variants significantly increase the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), while antioxidants lower the risk. We aimed to investigate whether dietary antioxidants can lower the genetic risk of early AMD conferred by the genetic variants CFH Y402H and LOC387715 A69S.
In the prospective, population-based Rotterdam Study, dietary intake was assessed at baseline using a 170-item semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire. Of participants at risk of Early AMD, 2118 had complete data on dietary intake, CFH Y402H,and LOC387715 A69S. Incident Early AMD was determined by grading fundus color transparencies according to the International Classification and Grading System. We used Cox proportional hazards regression analysis to estimate hazard ratios (HRs), adjusted for age, gender, smoking and atherosclerosis.
During follow-up (median, 8.6 years) 474 participants developed Early AMD. Compared to CFH Y402H noncarriers in the lowest tertile of zinc intake, homozygotes in this tertile had a HR of 1.76 (95% CI, 1.06 - 2.92). Higher zinc intake reduced this to 1.61 (95% CI, 0.98 - 2.62) in the middle tertile, and to 1.09 (95% CI, 0.61 - 1.96) in the highest tertile. This antagonistic effect of zinc intake was statistically significant (synergy index = 0.56; 95% CI, 0.41 - 0.76). Interaction between β-carotene; lutein/zeaxanthin; eicosapentaenoic/docosahexaenoic acid; and CFH Y402H also showed considerable risk reduction for homozygotes, as did interaction between zinc and LOC387715 A69S. However, these interactions did not reach statistical significance.
High dietary intake of antioxidants may reduce the risk of Early AMD among those at high genetic risk. Hence, it may be warranted to provide advice on diet in young susceptible individuals to postpone or prohibit the onset of Late AMD.
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