Postreceptor Neuronal Loss in Intermediate Age-related Macular Degeneration.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


To investigate the relationship between ganglion cell complex (GCC) thickness and photoreceptor alterations in eyes with intermediate age-related macular degeneration (AMD).


Retrospective case-control study.


We collected data from 68 eyes with intermediate AMD from 68 patients with spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SDOCT) imaging. A control group of 50 eyes from 50 healthy subjects was included for comparison. Our main outcome measures for comparison between groups were (1) the average and minimum GCC thickness and (2) the "normalized" reflectivity of the ellipsoid zone (EZ) en face image.


The average and minimum GCC thicknesses were thinner in AMD patients (69.54 ± 9.30 μm and 63.22 ± 14.11 μm, respectively) than in healthy controls (78.57 ± 6.28 μm and 76.28 ± 6.85 μm, P < .0001 and P < .0001, respectively). Agreement was found to be excellent in the "normalized" EZ reflectivity assessment (intraclass correlation coefficient = 0.986, coefficient of variation = 1.11). The EZ "normalized" reflectivity was 0.67 ± 0.11 in controls and 0.61 ± 0.09 in the AMD group (P = .006). In univariate analysis, EZ "normalized" reflectivity was found to have a significant direct relationship with average (P < .0001) and minimum (P < .0001) GCC thickness in AMD patients, but not in controls (P = .852 and P = .892, respectively).


Eyes with intermediate AMD exhibit GCC thinning, as well as a reduced EZ "normalized" reflectivity, and these parameters are correlated. This study supports the concept of postreceptor retinal neuronal loss as a contributor to retinal thinning in intermediate AMD.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Borrelli, E; Abdelfattah, NS; Uji, A; Nittala, MG; Boyer, DS; Sadda, SR

Published Date

  • September 2017

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 181 /

Start / End Page

  • 1 - 11

PubMed ID

  • 28624323

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1879-1891

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0002-9394

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.ajo.2017.06.005


  • eng