Optometry and Vision Sciences - Research Publications
Now showing items 1-12 of 197
Orientation-dependency of perceptual surround suppression and orientation decoding of centre-surround stimuli are preserved with healthy ageing
(Elsevier BV, 2020-11)
A key visual neuronal property that is mirrored in human behaviour is centre-surround contrast suppression, which is orientation-dependent. When a target is embedded in a high-contrast surround, the centre appears reduced in contrast, the magnitude of which depends on the relative orientation between centre and surround. Previous reports demonstrate changes in perceptual surround suppression with ageing; however, whether the orientation-dependency of surround suppression is impacted by ageing has not been explored. Here, we tested 18 younger (aged 19–33) and 18 older (aged 60–77) adults. Perceptual surround suppression was stronger for parallel than orthogonal stimuli; however contrary to previous work, here we found no difference in perceptual suppression strength between age-groups. In the same participants, we measured event-related potentials (ERPs) and conducted multivariate pattern analysis to confirm that parallel and orthogonal centre-surround stimuli elicit distinguishable brain activity, predominantly over occipital areas. Despite a delay in the first prominent ERP component (P1) in response to each pattern, older adults showed similar decoding of orientation information (i.e. distinguish between parallel and orthogonal centre-surround stimuli from 70 ms post-stimulus onset) as younger adults. This suggests that sufficient information to distinguish orientation in centre-surround stimuli becomes available to the older human brain as early as in younger adults.
Migraine Screening in Primary Eye Care Practice: Current Behaviors and the Impact of Clinician Education
BACKGROUND: Migraine is underdiagnosed and undertreated. Optometrists are primary eye care providers, who regularly encounter people with migraine as an incidental finding during routine eye examinations, or when patients present to rule out whether visual or ocular problems are contributing to headache symptoms. Knowledge and use of a migraine screening tool in optometric practice is, therefore, important to be able to identify and refer people with migraine for appropriate management. OBJECTIVE: We sought to investigate optometrists' current behaviors regarding screening for migraine, and to assess the effectiveness of an educational resource in promoting the use of a 3-item validated migraine screening questionnaire, the ID-Migraine. METHODS: We first conducted a cross-sectional study using a survey to assess optometrists' current knowledge and behaviors about migraine screening and willingness to participate in a pilot implementation program. Participants who provided their contact details were invited to watch an online educational resource about a validated migraine screening tool. After 6 weeks, these participants were invited to participate in a follow-up cohort study involving a survey to assess the effectiveness of the educational resource. RESULTS: Ninety-eight optometrists completed the initial survey as part of the cross-sectional study. We found that most optometrists actively asked patients about migraine (79/98 respondents, 81%) as part of routine eye examinations and self-rated themselves as confident in identifying migraine (71/98 respondents, 72%). However, the majority (90/98 respondents, 92%) were not aware of any validated migraine screening tools. Seventy-eight respondents provided their contact details to receive information about the subsequent cohort study. In response to the follow-up study survey (31/78 participants, 40%), 45% (14/31 respondents) of participants self-reported using the ID-Migraine tool after watching our educational video, and most of these participants (12/14 respondents, 86%) were likely or extremely likely to continue to use the tool in their practice. CONCLUSIONS: From our initial cross-sectional survey, we conclude that optometrists do not currently use validated screening tools for migraine and as such, there is an opportunity for continuing professional development in this area. Our follow-up cohort study demonstrates that educating optometrists on the importance and utility of a validated migraine screening tool is achievable with a relatively simple, low-time investment intervention (an online educational video). Such education may result in improved identification of migraine, which may lead to improved management.
Hybrid diamond/ carbon fiber microelectrodes enable multimodal electrical/chemical neural interfacing
Implantable medical devices are now in regular use to treat or ameliorate medical conditions, including movement disorders, chronic pain, cardiac arrhythmias, and hearing or vision loss. Aside from offering alternatives to pharmaceuticals, one major advantage of device therapy is the potential to monitor treatment efficacy, disease progression, and perhaps begin to uncover elusive mechanisms of diseases pathology. In an ideal system, neural stimulation, neural recording, and electrochemical sensing would be conducted by the same electrode in the same anatomical region. Carbon fiber (CF) microelectrodes are the appropriate size to achieve this goal and have shown excellent performance, in vivo. Their electrochemical properties, however, are not suitable for neural stimulation and electrochemical sensing. Here, we present a method to deposit high surface area conducting diamond on CF microelectrodes. This unique hybrid microelectrode is capable of recording single-neuron action potentials, delivering effective electrical stimulation pulses, and exhibits excellent electrochemical dopamine detection. Such electrodes are needed for the next generation of miniaturized, closed-loop implants that can self-tune therapies by monitoring both electrophysiological and biochemical biomarkers.
Tablets at the bedside - iPad-based visual field test used in the diagnosis of Intrasellar Haemangiopericytoma: a case report
(BIOMED CENTRAL LTD, 2017-04-24)
BACKGROUND: In the assessment of a pituitary mass, objective visual field testing represents a valuable means of evaluating mass effect, and thus in deciding whether surgical management is warranted. CASE PRESENTATION: In this vignette, we describe a 73 year-old lady who presented with a three-week history of frontal headache, and 'blurriness' in the left side of her vision, due to a WHO grade III anaplastic haemangiopericytoma compressing the optic chiasm. We report how timely investigations, including an iPad-based visual field test (Melbourne Rapid Field, (MRF)) conducted at the bedside aided swift and appropriate management of the patient. CONCLUSIONS: We envisage such a test having a role in assessing bed-bound patients in hospital where access to formal visual field testing is difficult, or indeed in rapid testing of visual fields at the bedside to screen for post-operative complications, such as haematoma.
Meibomian gland dropout is associated with immunodeficiency at HIV diagnosis: Implications for dry eye disease
AIM: To characterize anterior eye health and tear film characteristics in individuals with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) undergoing anti-retroviral therapy. METHODS: This cross-sectional study involved 35 adults, categorized as healthy controls (n = 18) or as HIV-positive patients (n = 17), with no history of opportunistic infection or current ocular fundus abnormalities. Participants underwent a comprehensive anterior eye assessment. Primary outcome measures were dry eye symptoms (Ocular Surface Disease Index survey), tear film osmolarity, and extent of meibomian gland dropout. Secondary outcomes measures were ocular redness, tear film stability, and ocular surface staining. Levels of 36 cytokines were assayed from basal tears using a multiplex bead array. RESULTS: The HIV-positive group showed more extensive meibomian gland dropout relative to controls (mean ± SD, controls: 29.6 ± 5.8 versus 37.0 ± 13.9%, p = 0.045). The extent of meibomian gland dropout was negatively correlated with blood CD4 T-cell count (a marker of immunodeficiency) at diagnosis (r = -0.69, p = 0.006). All other tests of anterior ocular health, including dry eye symptom levels, were not significantly different between the groups. There were no significant inter-group differences for the 36 cytokines assayed in the tear film. CONCLUSIONS: We find greater meibomian gland dropout in HIV-positive individuals that is related to disease severity at diagnosis. Given this feature predisposes to dry eye disease, it suggests the need for long-term studies of anterior eye health in people with HIV.
Stimulation Strategies for Improving the Resolution of Retinal Prostheses.
(Frontiers Media, 2020-03-26)
Electrical stimulation using implantable devices with arrays of stimulating electrodes is an emerging therapy for neurological diseases. The performance of these devices depends greatly on their ability to activate populations of neurons with high spatiotemporal resolution. To study electrical stimulation of populations of neurons, retina serves as a useful model because the neural network is arranged in a planar array that is easy to access. Moreover, retinal prostheses are under development to restore vision by replacing the function of damaged light sensitive photoreceptors, which makes retinal research directly relevant for curing blindness. Here we provide a progress review on stimulation strategies developed in recent years to improve the resolution of electrical stimulation in retinal prostheses. We focus on studies performed with explanted retinas, in which electrophysiological techniques are the most advanced. We summarize achievements in improving the spatial and temporal resolution of electrical stimulation of the retina and methods to selectively stimulate neurons with different visual functions. Future directions for retinal prostheses development are also discussed, which could provide insights for other types of neuromodulatory devices in which high-resolution electrical stimulation is required.
Behold the Eye in Parkinson's Disease & Alzheimer’s Disease
(Frontiers Media SA, 2016-11)
Consequently, AD/PD patients can gradually develop vision problems. This neurological and ophthalmological disorder creates a pressing need for developing therapy to treat vision impairment in AD/PD.
Conscious Wireless Electroretinogram and Visual Evoked Potentials in Rats
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2013-09-12)
The electroretinogram (ERG, retina) and visual evoked potential (VEP, brain) are widely used in vivo tools assaying the integrity of the visual pathway. Current recordings in preclinical models are conducted under anesthesia, which alters neural physiology and contaminates responses. We describe a conscious wireless ERG and VEP recording platform in rats. Using a novel surgical technique to chronically implant electrodes subconjunctivally on the eye and epidurally over the visual cortex, we are able to record stable and repeatable conscious ERG and VEP signals over at least 1 month. We show that the use of anaesthetics, necessary for conventional ERG and VEP measurements, alters electrophysiology recordings. Conscious visual electrophysiology improves the viability of longitudinal studies by eliminating complications associated with repeated anaesthesia. It will also enable uncontaminated assessment of drug effects, allowing the eye to be used as an effective biomarker of the central nervous system.
A Role for Smoothened during Murine Lens and Cornea Development
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2014-09-30)
Various studies suggest that Hedgehog (Hh) signalling plays roles in human and zebrafish ocular development. Recent studies (Kerr et al., Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2012; 53, 3316-30) showed that conditionally activating Hh signals promotes murine lens epithelial cell proliferation and disrupts fibre differentiation. In this study we examined the expression of the Hh pathway and the requirement for the Smoothened gene in murine lens development. Expression of Hh pathway components in developing lens was examined by RT-PCR, immunofluorescence and in situ hybridisation. The requirement of Smo in lens development was determined by conditional loss-of-function mutations, using LeCre and MLR10 Cre transgenic mice. The phenotype of mutant mice was examined by immunofluorescence for various markers of cell cycle, lens and cornea differentiation. Hh pathway components (Ptch1, Smo, Gli2, Gli3) were detected in lens epithelium from E12.5. Gli2 was particularly localised to mitotic nuclei and, at E13.5, Gli3 exhibited a shift from cytosol to nucleus, suggesting distinct roles for these transcription factors. Conditional deletion of Smo, from ∼E12.5 (MLR10 Cre) did not affect ocular development, whereas deletion from ∼E9.5 (LeCre) resulted in lens and corneal defects from E14.5. Mutant lenses were smaller and showed normal expression of p57Kip2, c-Maf, E-cadherin and Pax6, reduced expression of FoxE3 and Ptch1 and decreased nuclear Hes1. There was normal G1-S phase but decreased G2-M phase transition at E16.5 and epithelial cell death from E14.5-E16.5. Mutant corneas were thicker due to aberrant migration of Nrp2+ cells from the extraocular mesenchyme, resulting in delayed corneal endothelial but normal epithelial differentiation. These results indicate the Hh pathway is required during a discrete period (E9.5-E12.5) in lens development to regulate lens epithelial cell proliferation, survival and FoxE3 expression. Defective corneal development occurs secondary to defects in lens and appears to be due to defective migration of peri-ocular Nrp2+ neural crest/mesenchymal cells.
Baseline Detrending for the Photopic Negative Response
(ASSOC RESEARCH VISION OPHTHALMOLOGY INC, 2018-09-01)
Purpose: The photopic negative response (PhNR) of the light-adapted electroretinogram (ERG) holds promise as an objective marker of retinal ganglion cell function. We compared baseline detrending methods to improve PhNR repeatability without compromising its diagnostic ability in glaucoma. Methods: Photopic ERGs were recorded in 20 glaucoma and 18 age-matched control participants. A total of 50 brief, red-flashes (1.6 cd.s/m2) on a blue background (10 photopic cd/m2) were delivered using the RETeval device. Detrending methods compared were: (1) increasing the high-pass filter from 1 to 10 Hz and (2) estimating and removing the trend with an increasing polynomial (order from 1-10) applied to the prestimulus interval, prestimulus and postsignal interval, or the whole ERG signal. Coefficient of repeatability (COR%), unpaired Student's t-test, and area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) were used to compare the detrending methods. Results: Most detrending methods improved PhNR test-retest repeatability compared to the International Society for Clinical Electrophysiology of Vision (ISCEV) recommended 0.3 to 300 Hz band-pass filter (COR% ± 200%). In particular, detrending with a polynomial (order 3) applied to the whole signal performed the best (COR% ± 44%) while achieving similar diagnostic ability as ISCEV band-pass (AUC 0.74 vs. 0.75, respectively). However, over-correcting with higher orders of processing can cause waveform distortion and reduce diagnostic ability. Conclusions: Baseline detrending can improve the PhNR repeatability without compromising its clinical use in glaucoma. Further studies exploring more complex processing methods are encouraged. Translational Relevance: Baseline detrending can significantly improve the quality of the PhNR.
A Comparison of the RETeval Sensor Strip and DTL Electrode for Recording the Photopic Negative Response
(ASSOC RESEARCH VISION OPHTHALMOLOGY INC, 2018-12-01)
Purpose: To compare the RETeval sensor strip and Dawson-Trick-Litzkow (DTL) electrodes for recording the photopic negative response (PhNR) using a portable electroretinogram (ERG) device in eyes with and without glaucoma. Methods: Twenty-six control and 31 glaucoma or glaucoma-suspect participants were recruited. Photopic ERGs were recorded with sensor strip and DTL electrodes in random order using the LKC RETeval device. Stimuli consisted of brief, red flashes (1.7 cd.s/m2) on a blue background (photopic 10 cd/m2). The PhNR amplitude was measured from baseline to trough and also expressed as a ratio over the b-wave amplitude. Results: The sensor strip-recorded PhNR amplitude was significantly attenuated (mean ± standard deviation [SD], 4.8 ± 2.1 vs. 12.7 ± 4.8 μV, P < 0.0001), with lower signal-to-noise ratio (SNR; 5.5 ± 2.1 vs. 8.1 ± 3.9, P < 0.0001), and a trend toward a larger PhNR/b-wave ratio compared with DTL electrodes. The PhNR amplitude, implicit time and PhNR/b-wave ratio correlated with visual field mean light sensitivity, although this fell short of significance for the sensor strip recorded PhNR amplitude. The electrodes demonstrated similar intersession repeatability with a coefficient of repeatability of ±27% and ±28% for the DTL and sensor strip, respectively. Conclusions: Sensor strip electrodes are a viable alternative for recording reproducible PhNRs, especially when values are normalized to the b-wave. However, DTL electrodes should be considered in cases of attenuated PhNR, or in elevated noise levels, due to its better signal-to-noise quality. Translational Relevance: Sensor strip electrodes can simplify PhNR recordings in the clinic, potentially eliminating the need for an experienced operator.
Optimizing a Portable ERG Device for Glaucoma Clinic: The Effect of Interstimulus Frequency on the Photopic Negative Response
(ASSOC RESEARCH VISION OPHTHALMOLOGY INC, 2018-12-01)
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of interstimulus frequency on the photopic negative response (PhNR) in the clinical electroretinogram (ERG) in glaucoma and healthy eyes. Methods: Participants with open angle glaucoma (n = 15) and age-matched controls (n = 20) were recruited. Photopic ERGs were recorded in one eye using five frequencies (1-5 Hz) delivered in random order. ERGs were analyzed for changes to amplitude and timing between groups and interstimulus frequency. Coefficient of variation (CoV) was used to examine variability within recordings for each frequency. Results: While the a-wave and b-wave showed minimal alteration, the PhNR was highly sensitive to changes in interstimulus frequency. The PhNR signal was largest at 1 Hz and steadily diminished with higher frequencies in both control and glaucoma groups. Significant differences in PhNR amplitude were found between controls and glaucoma groups at 2 and 3 Hz. While 1 Hz delivered the largest PhNR, it also showed a significantly greater CoV compared to other frequencies. Conclusions: An interstimulus frequency of 2 Hz was optimal for recording the PhNR, creating a good balance between testing time and signal quality. A higher frequency could be used to further shorten clinical testing times; however, this may compromise its clinical utility by dampening the PhNR. Translational Relevance: Here we show the importance of considering flash interstimulus frequency when designing ERG protocols for recording the PhNR as while higher frequencies can shorten test times, they also have considerable effects on the PhNR.