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Michael B Yang, Gui-Shuang Ying, Lauren Tomlinson, Gil Binenbaum; Winter Season of Conception Associated with an Increased Risk for Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP): A Report from the Postnatal Growth and ROP (G-ROP) Study. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):2783.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Previous mouse studies found a melanopsin-dependent light-responsive pathway for retinal vascular development during early gestation (embryonic days E16-17). A single-center human study then found that lower average day-length during the first 90 days after conception was associated with increased risk of severe ROP. We sought to compare ROP risk when post-conceptual day 58 (correlates with mouse E16-17) falls near December 21 versus June 21, dates with minimum and maximum day lengths, respectively.
Secondary analysis was performed using retrospective data from the G-ROP Study, which included infants undergoing ROP screening at 30 North American hospitals in 2006-2012. Date of conception (DOC) was calculated as [(date of birth) – (estimated gestational age) + (14 days)], and 58 days were added (DOC+58). Prevalence of ROP for infants with DOC+58 within 90-day time windows centered on December 21 and June 21 were compared with multivariable logistic regression.
3740 infants had DOC+58 within the time windows studied. 885/1949 (45.4%) and 762/1791 (42.6%) of winter and summer conception infants, respectively, developed ROP (p=0.08). After adjustment for birth weight and gestational age, the odds of ROP for winter conception was 20% higher compared to summer conception (OR: 1.20; 95% CI: 1.01-1.42; p=0.03). The same association existed for 120-day time windows (OR: 1.21, p=0.009).
The increased ROP risk associated with winter conception may support a melanopsin-dependent light response for retinal vascular development. If confirmed by additional studies, an interventional study of light therapy during early gestation may be considered to reduce ROP risk.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
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