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  • Comprehensive Ophthalmology, Pediatric Ophth/Strabismus, Retina/Vitreous

    A weekly roundup of ophthalmic news from around the web.

    Let’s have another cup of coffee (or tea) to promote retinal health. A recent study of data from the UK Biobank measured the anatomic effects of self-reported caffeinated coffee and tea consumption on macular retinal nerve fiber layer (mRNFL) thickness. Of the more than 35,000 participants, 78% reported regular coffee consumption and 86% reported regular tea consumption. Significant increases in mRNFL thickness were associated with drinking 2−3 cups of coffee per day and ≥4 cups of tea per day. The authors conclude that these drinks may provide ocular neuroprotective benefits. Nutrients

    It took fewer than 20 years for ROP rates in the United States to nearly double. Between 2003 and 2019, the proportion of premature infants with a retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) diagnosis rose from 4.4% to 8.1%, an 86% relative increase, according to records from the National Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project Kids’ Inpatient Databases. The highest increases were seen among Black infants, those living in the South, and those in the lowest median household income quartile. The authors note these findings suggest “the burden of ROP is increasing and resting disproportionately on historically marginalized populations...Future work should focus on understanding the root cause of these discrepancies [in health outcomes], which may include factors such as access to and quality of prenatal and ROP care.” JAMA Ophthalmology

    Clinicians were right: AMD is centered in the macula. Using epigenomic data from a unique biorepository of post-mortem eye diseases, researchers have identified 23 genome-wide loci that are differentially methylated in AMD. This differential methylation was seen most prominently in the macular retinal pigment epithelium. Dr. Margaret DeAngelis of the University at Buffalo, senior co-author of the published study, said these findings confirm that AMD is centered in the macula, and further research will be needed to understand why AMD does not spread to the rest of the eye like other ophthalmic conditions such as glaucoma. University at Buffalo; Cell Genomics