Development of Primary Open Angle Glaucoma-Like Features in a Rhesus Macaque Colony From Southern China


Pasquale LR, Gong L, Wiggs JL, Pan L, Yang Z, Wu M, Yang Z, Chen DF, Zeng W. Development of Primary Open Angle Glaucoma-Like Features in a Rhesus Macaque Colony From Southern China. Transl Vis Sci Technol 2021;10(9):20.

Date Published:

2021 Aug 02


Purpose: To describe the ocular phenotype of spontaneous glaucoma in a non-human primate colony. Methods: In total, 722 Rhesus macaque monkeys aged 10 to 25 years underwent optical coherence tomography (OCT), fundus photography (FP), and intraocular pressure (IOP) measurements. Monkeys with baseline cup-to-disc ratio (CDR) <0.5 were used to establish baseline ocular features. A subset was followed longitudinally for three years and compared to glaucoma suspects on the basis of OCT/FP criteria. Results: The average IOP under ketamine sedation and average CDR for the entire colony was 13.0 ± 4.3 mm Hg and 0.38 ± 0.07, respectively. The mean baseline conscious IOP of glaucoma suspects (N = 18) versus controls (N = 108) was 16.2 ± 3.5 mm Hg and 13.9 ± 2.3 mm Hg, respectively (P = 0.001). All glaucoma suspects had unremarkable slit lamp examinations and open angles based on anterior segment OCT. Baseline global circumpapillary retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness was 91.5 ± 11.0 µM versus 102.7 ± 8.5 µM in suspects and controls, respectively (P < 0.0001). All sectors on the baseline circumpapillary OCT showed a significant reduction in RNFL thickness versus controls (P ≤ 0.0022) except for the temporal sector (P ≥ 0.07). In three-year longitudinal analysis, neither CDR nor OCT parameters changed in controls (N = 40; P ≥ 0.16), whereas significant increase in CDR (P = 0.018) and nominally significant decreases in two OCT sectors (nasal, P = 0.023 and nasal inferior, P = 0.046) were noted in suspects. Conclusions: Members of a nonhuman primate colony exhibit important ophthalmic features of human primary open-angle glaucoma. Translational Relevance: Identification of a spontaneous model of glaucoma in nonhuman primates represents an unprecedented opportunity to elucidate the natural history, pathogenesis and effective therapeutic strategies for the disease.

Last updated on 09/01/2021