RPE mosaic imaged for the first time in a living retina

March 4, 2009

The retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cell mosaic has been imaged for the first time in a living retina using an adaptive optics scanning laser ophthalmoscope (AOSLO), according to a report published in the March issue of Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science.

The retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cell mosaic has been imaged for the first time in a living retina using an adaptive optics scanning laser ophthalmoscope (AOSLO), according to a report published in the March issue of Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science.

David Williams and colleagues from the University of Rochester, Center for Visual Science, New York conducted a study in which the retina was imaged simultaneously with two light channels in a fluorescence AOSLO. One channel was used for reflectance imaging of the cones while the other detected RPE autofluorescence. Reflectance frames were registered to determine interframe eye motion, the motion was corrected in the simultaneously recorded autofluorescence frames (AFs) and the AFs were averaged to give the final mosaic image.

In vivo imaging showed that, with increasing eccentricity, RPE cell density and mosaic regularity decreased, whereas RPE cell size and spacing increased. Measurements of the same location where repeated after 42 days and it was discovered that neither the cells or distribution of cells had changed.

The authors of the study concluded that mosaic analysis can provide a quantitative database for studying normal and diseased PRE in vivo. Furthermore, the technique will allow studies to track disease progression and assess treatment efficacy in patients with retinal disease.