Light-Dependent OCT Structure Changes in Photoreceptor Degenerative rd 10 Mouse Retina. uri icon


  • Purpose: Using optical coherence tomography (OCT) to analyze the effects of light/dark adaptation in a mouse model of inherited photoreceptor degeneration (rd10), and to study dynamics of subretinal fluid during the progress of retinal degeneration. Methods: rd10 and wild-type (WT) C57BL/6J mice were reared in cyclic light or darkness and imaged with Bioptigen UHR-OCT or Spectralis HRA+OCT after adaptation to either light or darkness. Results: OCT images from rd10 mice were analyzed at three progressive stages of degeneration. After light-adaptation, stage I (postnatal age [P]26-29) eyes demonstrated no apparent subretinal fluid. At stage II (P32-38), subretinal fluid was present and restricted to parapapillary area, while at stage III (P44-45) extensive subretinal fluid was present across many retinal areas. Following overnight dark-adaptation, WT eyes showed a large reduction in outer retinal thickness (4.6 ± 1.4 ?m, n = 16), whereas this change was significantly smaller in stage I rd10 eyes (1.5 ± 0.5 ?m, n = 14). In stage II rd10 eyes, dark-adaptation significantly reduced the extent of subretinal fluid, with the amount of reduction correlating with the amount of fluid pre-existing in the light-adapted state. However, dark-adaptation did not significantly alter the amount of subretinal fluid observed in stage III rd10 mice. In addition, dark-rearing of rd10 mice from P6 to P30 slowed retinal degeneration. Conclusions: Visual experience in the form of light/dark adaptation exerts a significant effect on outer retinal structure in the context of photoreceptor degeneration. This effect may arise from light-dependent alterations in fluid transport across the RPE monolayer, and promote photoreceptor survival as induced by dark-rearing.

publication date

  • February 1, 2018