Research ArticleRetinal Disease

Calcified nodules in retinal drusen are associated with disease progression in age-related macular degeneration

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Science Translational Medicine  07 Nov 2018:
Vol. 10, Issue 466, eaat4544
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aat4544

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Imaging AMD progression

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of vision impairment in older individuals. About 20% of those who develop AMD will progress to vision loss. Reliable methods to identify patients at risk of progression to late stage AMD are lacking. Tan et al. used multimodal imaging, histological analysis and nano-analytical measurements to show that calcified nodules in the retina were associated with AMD progression. The authors found that these nodules were composed of hydroxyapatite and could be distinguished from other types of calcifications. The results suggest that multimodal imaging might help to guide therapeutic approaches and outcome measures in patients at risk of progressing to advanced AMD.