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Christine A. Curcio; Boynton Award Lecture: Cone resilience, rod vulnerability - how precise retinal topography will help beat age-related macular degeneration. Journal of Vision 2022;22(3):59. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/jov.22.3.59.
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AMD is both the most prevalent disease with a CNS neurodegeneration and the most approachable due to the precision and in vivo visibility of photoreceptors and their support cells and very large biological effects. We hypothesize that a center of cone resilience due to xanthophyll carotenoids in foveal Müller glia overlies a larger surround of rod vulnerability due to age-related lipidization of Bruch’s membrane and choriocapillary endothelium degeneration. A timeline of disease progression is in view for drusen-driven disease, across the lifespan and aligning spatially on the biology of foveal cone vision. Rods elucidate the next chapter of deposit-driven AMD end-stages as well as a new neuroscience for lysosome-related organelles in the retinal pigment epithelium.
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