September 2019
Volume 19, Issue 10
Open Access
Vision Sciences Society Annual Meeting Abstract  |   September 2019
The relation of individual variation in total retinal ganglion cell layer thickness to post-retinal anatomy
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Geoffrey K Aguirre
    Department of Neurology, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, United States
  • Ritobrato Datta
    Department of Neurology, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Min Chen
    Scheie Eye Institute, Department of Ophthalmology, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, United States
  • Kara Cloud
    School of Arts and Sciences, The College, University of Pennsylvania
  • Jessica I. W. Morgan
    Scheie Eye Institute, Department of Ophthalmology, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, United States
    Center for Advanced Retinal and Ocular Therapeutics, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, United States
Journal of Vision September 2019, Vol.19, 41. doi:https://doi.org/10.1167/19.10.41
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      Geoffrey K Aguirre, Ritobrato Datta, Min Chen, Kara Cloud, Jessica I. W. Morgan; The relation of individual variation in total retinal ganglion cell layer thickness to post-retinal anatomy. Journal of Vision 2019;19(10):41. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/19.10.41.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Introduction: There is individual variation in both the thickness of the retinal ganglion cell (RGC) layer of the eye, and in the relative size of anatomical components of the post-retinal visual pathway. In ophthalmologic disease, congenital RGC loss shrinks the geniculo-striate pathway (although increases apparent V1 thickness). We tested if normal variation is shared in retinal and post-retinal visual anatomy. Methods: Forty subjects were studied with SD-OCT, anatomical MRI scanning, and ocular biometry. Macular OCT was performed on the right and left eye, and with horizontal and vertical B-scan orientations (width 30° visual angle). The RGC+IPL layer (hereafter “RGC”) was segmented and edited using OCT-Explorer v5.0. The acquisitions were combined into a single, pseudo-right eye. The mean RGC layer thickness was obtained for each subject. T1 brain images were acquired at 3T and analyzed with the HCP pipeline. We obtained the volume of the optic chiasm and lateral geniculate nucleus, and the surface area and thickness of area V1 gray matter. Results: The correlation between the left and right eye RGC thickness was r=0.98, suggesting low measurement noise. As has been reported previously, axial length was negatively related to RGC thickness, accounting for 26% (+−9% quartile by bootstrap resampling) of across-subject variance in RGC thickness. There was no effect of subject age in these data. The volume of the optic chiasm and LGN, relative to total supra-tentorial volume, were positively related to RGC thickness (13+−4% additional variance explained). There was no relationship between RGC thickness and either V1 surface area or thickness. Conclusion: There is a modest relationship between individual differences in total RGC layer thickness and the size of the optic chiasm and LGN. It remains to be seen if differences in the distribution of RGC density across the retina, independent of overall thickness, are related to post-retinal organization.

Acknowledgement: U01EY025864 
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