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Journal of Ophthalmology
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 7043752, 8 pages
Research Article

Structure and Function Relationship of Activated Retinal Glia in Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma Patients

1Department of Ophthalmology, Glaucoma Service, University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland
2Center for Biomedical Statistics, University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland

Correspondence should be addressed to Matthias C. Grieshaber

Received 24 February 2017; Revised 30 April 2017; Accepted 14 May 2017; Published 27 June 2017

Academic Editor: Antonio Ferreras

Copyright © 2017 Christoph Nützi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Purpose. To evaluate clinically activated retinal astrocytes and Müller cells (ARAM) regarding retinal sensitivity and retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness in primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG). Methods. Central visual field (VF; i.e., retinal sensitivity) was measured with a custom-made macular pattern by microperimetry and correlated with the presence (ARAM+) or absence (ARAM−) of ARAM on red-free fundus photography and with the corresponding RNFL by optical coherence tomography (OCT). Results. In the eyes of POAG patients, ARAM+ had overall a significantly lower retinal sensitivity (ARAM+: 7.34 dB, ARAM−: 11.9 dB; ) and lower RNFL thickness in the inferior peripapillary quadrants compared to ARAM− (RNFL superior: ARAM+ 74.2 μm, ARAM− 77.5 μm; RNFL temporal: ARAM+ 46.8 μm, ARAM− 53.0 μm, ; and RNFL inferior: ARAM+ 63.2 μm, ARAM− 73.1 μm, ). Within the same eye, ARAM+ showed a lower retinal sensitivity compared to ARAM− ([ARAM− (11.13 dB)] − [ARAM+ (9.56 dB) = 1.57 dB; ). The proportion of ARAM+ per eye correlated strongly with reduced retinal light sensitivity (), corresponding lower peripapillary RNFL thickness (), and lower RNFL temporal quadrant thickness (), but not with greater age (). Conclusion. ARAM was more frequently identified in the eyes with a lower retinal sensitivity and peripapillary RNFL thickness and may be a clinical sign in the macula for an advanced stage of POAG.