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Wang M, Garg I, Miller JB. Wide Field Swept Source Optical Coherence Tomography Angiography for the Evaluation of Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy and Associated Lesions: A Review. Semin Ophthalmol 2021;36(4):162-167.Abstract
Retinal imaging remains the mainstay for monitoring and grading diabetic retinopathy. The gold standard for detecting proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR) requiring treatment has long been the seven-field stereoscopic fundus photography and fluorescein angiography. In the past decade, ultra-wide field fluorescein angiography (UWF-FA) has become more commonly used in clinical practice for the evaluation of more advanced diabetic retinopathy. Since its invention, optical coherence tomography (OCT) has been an important tool for the assessment of diabetic macular edema; however, OCT offered little in the assessment of neovascular changes associated with PDR until OCT-A became available. More recently, swept source OCT allowed larger field of view scans to assess a variety of DR lesions with wide field swept source optical coherence tomography (WF-SS-OCTA). This paper reviews the role of WF-SS-OCTA in detecting neovascularization of the disc (NVD), and elsewhere (NVE), microaneurysms, changes of the foveal avascular zone (FAZ), intraretinal microvascular abnormalities (IRMA), and capillary non-perfusion, as well as limitations of this evolving technology.
Raval V, Binkley E, Aronow ME, Valenzuela J, Peereboom DM, Singh AD. Primary central nervous system lymphoma - ocular variant: an interdisciplinary review on management. Surv Ophthalmol 2021;66(6):1009-1020.Abstract
Primary central nervous system lymphoma-ophthalmic variant (PCNSL-O) is an ocular subset of PCNSL predominantly involving subretinal pigment epithelium space, retina, and vitreous. The ophthalmic manifestations can precede, occur simultaneously, or follow other compartments of the CNS. Clinical trials have resulted in a significantly improved outcome in PCNSL patients over the past 2 decades, with a higher proportion of patients receiving frontline high dose methotrexate-based polychemotherapy regimens with curative intent; however, the current management of PCNSL-O remains controversial owing to lack of prospective data. The goals of PCNSL-O treatment are both to achieve local (ocular) control and to prevent tumor-specific mortality from further CNS involvement. Despite achieving high rates of ocular control with intravitreal agents like methotrexate and rituximab, the overall survival is poor, as 65-85% of patients eventually succumb to CNS disease. Few studies define the role of systemic chemotherapy with/without local treatment as a first line induction treatment for PCNSL-O considering limiting factors such as ocular penetration of systemically administered drugs and treatment related neurotoxicity. Also, the role of adjuvant treatment for PCNSL-O to prevent CNS progression and to improve overall survival is unknown. In this systematic review of the literature, we analyze treatment outcomes of various regimens (local, systemic, and combination) in terms of local control, CNS progression, and overall survival.
Elhusseiny AM, MacKinnon S, Zurakowski D, Huynh E, Dagi LR. Long-term ophthalmic outcomes in 120 children with unilateral coronal synostosis: a 20-year retrospective analysis. J AAPOS 2021;Abstract
BACKGROUND: Prior studies comparing ophthalmic outcomes after treating unicoronal synostosis (UCS) by early endoscopic strip craniectomy (ESC) versus later fronto-orbital advancement (FOA) are modest in sample size, or lack consistent age adjustment. We report long-term, age-adjusted ophthalmic outcomes for a large cohort after nonrandomized treatment by one of these two options. METHODS: The following data was retrieved from a retrospective review of the medical records of patients with treated UCS born since 2000: cycloplegic refractions, sensorimotor examinations, and strabismus procedures before craniofacial repair and postoperatively at approximately 18 and 60 months of age. V-pattern strabismus was graded as mild (absent or + 1/-1 oblique dysfunction) versus moderate-to-severe (≥+2/-2 oblique dysfunction or left to right vertical alignment change of ≥20Δ or ocular torticollis >15°). RESULTS: A total of 120 infants were included: 60 treated by FOA and 60 by ESC. By the late examination, aniso-astigmatism was present in 71.8% of FOA-treated patients and 46% of ESC-treated patients (P < 0.0001). By late examination, the age-adjusted odds ratio of moderate-to-severe V-pattern strabismus after treatment by FOA versus ESC was 2.65 (95% CI, 1.37-6.28; P = 0.02); strabismus surgery was performed in 26 infants treated by FOA compared with 13 treated by ESC (OR = 2.8; P = 0.02). Amblyopia developed in 60% of FOA-treated patients compared with 35% of those treated by ESC (OR 3.0; 95% CI, 1.3-6.7; P = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Our age-adjusted ophthalmic results confirm better long-term outcomes after treatment of USC by endoscopic strip craniectomy. Recognition and referral of affected infants by the earliest months of life facilitates the opportunity for endoscopic repair.
Breazzano MP, Nair AA, Arevalo FJ, Barakat MR, Berrocal AM, Chang JS, Chen A, Eliott D, Garg SJ, Ghadiali Q, Gong D, Grewal DS, Handa JT, Henderson M, Leiderman YI, Leng T, Mannina A, Mendel TA, Mustafi D, de Koo LOC, Patel SN, Patel TP, Prenner J, Richards P, Singh RP, Wykoff CC, Yannuzzi NA, Yu H, Modi YS, Chang S. Frequency of Urgent or Emergent Vitreoretinal Surgical Procedures in the United States During the COVID-19 Pandemic. JAMA Ophthalmol 2021;139(4):456-463.Abstract
Importance: The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) indicated that urgent or emergent vitreoretinal surgical procedures should continue during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Although decreases in the frequency of critical procedures have been reported outside the field of ophthalmology, analyses are limited by volume, geography, and time. Objective: To evaluate whether the frequency of ophthalmic surgical procedures deemed urgent or emergent by the AAO changed across the United States during the COVID-19 pandemic. Design, Setting, and Participants: Vitreoretinal practices from 17 institutions throughout the US participated in this multicenter cross-sectional study. The frequency of 11 billed vitreoretinal Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes across respective weeks was obtained from each practice between January 1, 2019, and May 31, 2020. Data were clustered into intravitreal injections (code 67028), lasers and cryotherapy (codes 67141, 67145, and 67228), retinal detachment (RD) repairs (codes 67107, 67108, 67110, and 67113), and other vitrectomies (codes 67036, 67039, and 67040). Institutions were categorized by region (Northeast, Midwest, South, and West Coast), practice setting (academic [tax-exempt] or private [non-tax-exempt]), and date of respective statewide stay-at-home orders. Main Outcomes and Measures: Nationwide changes in the frequency of billing for urgent or emergent vitreoretinal surgical procedures during the COVID-19 pandemic. Results: A total of 526 536 CPT codes were ascertained: 483 313 injections, 19 257 lasers or cryotherapy, 14 949 RD repairs, and 9017 other vitrectomies. Relative to 2019, a weekly institutional decrease in injections was observed from March 30 to May 2, 2020, with a maximal 38.6% decrease (from a mean [SD] of 437.8 [436.3] to 273.8 [269.0] injections) from April 6 to 12, 2020 (95% CI, -259 to -69 injections; P = .002). A weekly decrease was also identified that spanned a longer interval, at least until study conclusion (March 16 to May 31, 2020), for lasers and cryotherapy, with a maximal 79.6% decrease (from a mean [SD] of 6.6 [7.7] to 1.5 [2.0] procedures) from April 6 to 12, 2020 (95% CI, -6.8 to -3.3 procedures; P < .001), for RD repairs, with a maximal 59.4% decrease (from a mean [SD] of 3.5 [4.0] to 1.6 [2.2] repairs) from April 13 to 19, 2020 (95% CI, -2.7 to -1.4 repairs; P < .001), and for other vitrectomies, with a maximal 84.3% decrease (from a mean [SD] of 3.0 [3.1] to 0.4 [0.8] other vitrectomies) from April 6 to 12, 2020 (95% CI, -3.3 to -1.8 other vitrectomies; P < .001). No differences were identified by region, setting, or state-level stay-at-home order adjustment. Conclusions and Relevance: Although the AAO endorsed the continued performance of urgent or emergent vitreoretinal surgical procedures, the frequency of such procedures throughout the country experienced a substantial decrease that may persist after the COVID-19 pandemic's initial exponential growth phase. This decrease appears independent of region, setting, and state-level stay-at-home orders. It is unknown to what extent vitreoretinal intervention would have decreased without AAO recommendations, and how the decrease is associated with outcomes. Although safety is paramount during the COVID-19 pandemic, practices should consider prioritizing availability for managing high-acuity conditions until underlying reasons for the reduction are fully appreciated.
Sobrin L, Yu Y, Han S, Susarla G, Kempen JH, Hubbard RA, VanderBeek BL. Risk of Non-infectious Uveitis with Metformin Therapy in a Large Healthcare Claims Database. Ocul Immunol Inflamm 2021;:1-7.Abstract
PURPOSE: To determine if metformin is associated with noninfectious uveitis (NIU). METHODS: Patients in an insurance claims database who initiated metformin (n = 359,139) or other oral anti-diabetic medications (n = 162,847) were followed for NIU development. Both cohort and case-control analyses were performed to assess differing exposure lengths using Cox and conditional logistic regression, respectively. RESULTS: The hazard ratio (HR) for incident NIU was not significantly different between the metformin and non-metformin cohorts [HR = 1.19, 95% Confidence Interval (CI): 0.92-1.54, = .19]. The case control analysis similarly showed no association between any metformin use 2 years before the outcome date and NIU [odds ratio (OR) = 0.64, 95% CI: 0.39-1.04, = .07]. However, there was a protective 20 association between cumulative metformin duration [(445-729 days) adjusted OR (aOR) = 0.49, 95% CI: 0.27-0.90, = .02] and dosage (>390,000 mg aOR = 0.44, 95% CI: 0.25-0.78, = .001) compared with no metformin use. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest metformin use for longer durations may be protective of NIU onset.
Vinken K, Op de Beeck H. Using deep neural networks to evaluate object vision tasks in rats. PLoS Comput Biol 2021;17(3):e1008714.Abstract
In the last two decades rodents have been on the rise as a dominant model for visual neuroscience. This is particularly true for earlier levels of information processing, but a number of studies have suggested that also higher levels of processing such as invariant object recognition occur in rodents. Here we provide a quantitative and comprehensive assessment of this claim by comparing a wide range of rodent behavioral and neural data with convolutional deep neural networks. These networks have been shown to capture hallmark properties of information processing in primates through a succession of convolutional and fully connected layers. We find that performance on rodent object vision tasks can be captured using low to mid-level convolutional layers only, without any convincing evidence for the need of higher layers known to simulate complex object recognition in primates. Our approach also reveals surprising insights on assumptions made before, for example, that the best performing animals would be the ones using the most abstract representations-which we show to likely be incorrect. Our findings suggest a road ahead for further studies aiming at quantifying and establishing the richness of representations underlying information processing in animal models at large.
Scelfo C, Elhusseiny AM, Alkharashi M. Effect of inferior oblique myectomy on primary position when combined with lateral rectus recession for intermittent exotropia. Eur J Ophthalmol 2021;:11206721211002706.Abstract
PURPOSE: To evaluate the surgical success and need for adjustment due to overcorrection in patients who undergo inferior oblique myectomy (IOM) combined with lateral rectus recession (LRc) for intermittent exotropia in the setting of inferior oblique overaction. METHODS: A retrospective chart review was conducted of patients with intermittent exotropia who underwent LRc using adjustable sutures alone versus LRc combined with IOM between January 2010 and July 2018 at our institution. Binocular alignment was recorded before and within one week of surgery. Evaluation measures noted were surgical success (defined as distance alignment of ⩽10 prism diopters) and need for postoperative adjustment due to overcorrection. RESULTS: Of 48 patients, 24 underwent LRc alone and 24 underwent LRc combined with IOM; all 48 patients had adjustable sutures. Surgical success was significantly higher in the LRc alone group (91.6%) compared with the LRc with IOM group (62.5%) ( = 0.036). The need for postoperative adjustment due to overcorrection was also significantly higher in the LRc with IOM group (20.8%) compared with the LRc alone group (0%) ( = 0.049). CONCLUSIONS: In this study, more patients needed adjustment for overcorrection after undergoing LRc combined with IOM versus LRc alone. Since the tertiary action of the inferior oblique is abduction it is possible that, in patients with inferior oblique overaction, surgically weakening the inferior oblique causes more esodeviation and overcorrection. Thus, surgical correction of exotropia and inferior oblique overaction using LRc combined with IOM may lead to overcorrection and increased need for postoperative adjustment.
Lin LY, Jochym N, Merz JF. Refusal rates and waivers of informed consent in pragmatic and comparative effectiveness RCTs: A systematic review. Contemp Clin Trials 2021;104:106361.Abstract
BACKGROUND: Pragmatic and comparative effectiveness randomized controlled trials (RCTs) aim to be highly generalizable studies, with broad applicability and flexibility in methods. These trials also address recruitment issues by minimizing exclusions. The trials may also appeal to potential subjects because of lower risk and lower burdens of participation. We sought to examine rates of refusal and uses of waivers of informed consent in pragmatic and comparative effectiveness RCTs. METHODS: A systematic review of pragmatic and comparative effectiveness RCTs performed wholely or in part in the United States and first published in 2014 and 2017. RESULTS: 103 studies involving 105 discrete populations were included for review. Refusal data was collected for 71 RCTs. Overall, studies reported an average rate of 31.9% of potential subjects refused participation; on an individual basis, 38.4% of people asked to take part refused at some point during recruitment. 23 trials (22%) were performed, at least in part, with a waiver of informed consent, 7 (30%) of which provided any form of notice to subjects. CONCLUSIONS: Overall refusal rates for pragmatic and comparative effectiveness RCTs appear roughly the same as other types of research, with studies reporting about a third of people solicited for participation refuse. Moreover, informed consent was waived in 22% (95% Binomial exact Confidence Interval 13.9-30.5%) of the trials, and further study is needed to understand when waivers are justified and when notice should be provided.
Perepelkina T, Fulton AB. Artificial Intelligence (AI) Applications for Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Other Retinal Dystrophies. Semin Ophthalmol 2021;36(4):304-309.Abstract
Artificial intelligence (AI), with its subdivisions (machine and deep learning), is a new branch of computer science that has shown impressive results across a variety of domains. The applications of AI to medicine and biology are being widely investigated. Medical specialties that rely heavily on images, including radiology, dermatology, oncology and ophthalmology, were the first to explore AI approaches in analysis and diagnosis. Applications of AI in ophthalmology have concentrated on diseases with high prevalence, such as diabetic retinopathy, retinopathy of prematurity, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and glaucoma. Here we provide an overview of AI applications for diagnosis, classification, and clinical management of AMD and other macular dystrophies.
Dohlman TH, Singh RB, Dana R. Advances in the Medical Management of Neurotrophic Keratitis. Semin Ophthalmol 2021;36(4):335-340.Abstract
Neurotrophic Keratitis (NK) is a degenerative disorder of the cornea characterized by decreased or absent sensory corneal innervation, corneal epitheliopathy and impaired healing.The clinical presentation of NK can range from persistent epithelial defects to corneal perforation and management is often both challenging and protracted. Historically, the management of NK has consisted of non-specific strategies to facilitate corneal epithelial healing such as lubrication, bandage contact lenses and tarsorrhaphy. Recent advances in the development of therapeutics for NK have provided new and efficacious targeted strategies for its management.In this article, we review recombinant human nerve growth factor (Cenegermin), currently approved for clinical use in the United States and Europe, as well as other promising therapeutic options that are in pre-clinical development such as thymosine β4, connexin43 inhibitors, and artificial extracellular matrix components.
Mudie LI, Guo X, Slavin RE, Madden N, Wolf R, Owoeye J, Friedman DS, Repka MX, Collins ME. Baltimore Reading and Eye Disease Study: vision outcomes of school-based eye care. Can J Ophthalmol 2021;Abstract
OBJECTIVE: There are unmet needs for refractive correction in the pediatric population, especially in high-poverty communities. We reported the impact of refractive correction on vision outcomes over a 2-year follow-up in the Baltimore Reading and Eye Disease Study. DESIGN: Prospective, school-based cohort study. PARTICIPANTS: Students of second and third grades who were prescribed glasses during baseline assessment. METHODS: We conducted baseline eye exams in 12 Baltimore public schools during the fall of school year 2014-15 with follow-up visits in the spring of school year 2014-15 (first follow-up) and school year 2015-16 (second follow-up). Visual acuity (VA) was measured at distance and near with correction. Refractive status was determined based on the eye with the larger refractive error and categorized as myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: VA in better-seeing and worse-seeing eye at first and second follow-up, and acuity improvement from baseline. RESULTS: In the 206 students (84% African American) who completed the first follow-up, both distance (from 0.14 ± 0.20 to 0.05 ± 0.10 logMAR) and near presenting VA (from 0.08 ± 0.16 to 0.03 ± 0.06 logMAR) improved from the baseline assessment; children with more severe hyperopia showed improvement in near VA by 0.05 ± 0.16 logMAR. Children who were prescribed glasses through a school-based research study had improved vision, which was sustained into the following school year. CONCLUSIONS: Many second and third graders in Baltimore Schools needed refractive correction and benefited from provision of glasses with sustained vision improvement over the 2-year observation.
Douglas VP, Douglas KA, Rapalino O, Champion SN, Chwalisz BK. Nelson Syndrome: Clival Invasion of Corticotroph Pituitary Adenoma Resulting in Alternating Sixth Nerve Palsies. J Neuroophthalmol 2021;41(1):114-118.Abstract
ABSTRACT: A 44-year-old woman presented with 2 painful and self-limited episodes of binocular horizontal diplopia within 1 year that at the beginning were thought to be secondary to microvascular insult. Her medical history was significant for Cushing syndrome status post transsphenoidal resection with bilateral adrenalectomy 4 years prior, hypertension, and diabetes mellitus. Neuro-ophthalmic evaluation was significant for left abduction deficit and incomitant esotropia consistent with left abducens nerve palsy. Of note, the patient had experienced a similar episode but on the contralateral side a few months prior. Although initially MRI of the brain demonstrated stable residual postoperative finding in the sella, upon review, an heterogenous T-1 hypointense marrow in the clivus was noted. Hypermetabolism of the clivus was also noted on computed tomography positron emission tomography of the skull base. A clival biopsy demonstrated a corticotroph adenoma with elevated proliferation index and scattered mitoses. A corticotroph pituitary adenoma after adrenalectomy, also known as Nelson syndrome, was diagnosed. Radiation therapy was offered to the patient, and resolution of symptoms was gradually observed.
Greenwald SH, Brown EE, Scandura MJ, Hennessey E, Farmer R, Du J, Wang Y, Pierce EA. Mutant Nmnat1 leads to a retina-specific decrease of NAD+ accompanied by increased poly(ADP-ribose) in a mouse model of NMNAT1-associated retinal degeneration. Hum Mol Genet 2021;30(8):644-657.Abstract
Nicotinamide mononucleotide adenylyltransferase 1 (NMNAT1) is required for nuclear nicotinamide adenine mononucleotide (NAD+) biosynthesis in all nucleated cells, and despite its functional ubiquity, mutations in this gene lead to an isolated retinal degeneration. The mechanisms underlying how mutant NMNAT1 causes disease are not well understood, nor is the reason why the pathology is confined to the retina. Using a mouse model of NMNAT1-associated retinal degeneration that harbors the p.Val9Met mutation, we tested the hypothesis that decreased function of mutant NMNAT1 has a greater effect on the levels of NAD+ in the retina than elsewhere in the body. Measurements by liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry showed an early and sustained decrease of NAD+ in mutant retinas that was not observed in other tissues. To understand how consumers of nuclear NAD+ are affected by the reduced availability of NAD+ in mutant retinas, poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) and nuclear sirtuin activity were evaluated. PARP activity was elevated during disease progression, as evidenced by overproduction of poly(ADP-ribose) (PAR) in photoreceptors, whereas histone deacetylation activity of nuclear sirtuins was not altered. We hypothesized that PARP could be activated because of elevated levels of oxidative stress; however, we did not observe oxidative DNA damage, lipid peroxidation, or a low glutathione to oxidized glutathione ratio. Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling staining revealed that photoreceptors appear to ultimately die by apoptosis, although the low NAD+ levels and overproduction of PAR suggest that cell death may include aspects of the parthanatos cell death pathway.
Jones L, Hui A, Phan C-M, Read ML, Azar D, Buch J, Ciolino JB, Naroo SA, Pall B, Romond K, Sankaridurg P, Schnider CM, Terry L, Willcox M. CLEAR - Contact lens technologies of the future. Cont Lens Anterior Eye 2021;44(2):398-430.Abstract
Contact lenses in the future will likely have functions other than correction of refractive error. Lenses designed to control the development of myopia are already commercially available. Contact lenses as drug delivery devices and powered through advancements in nanotechnology will open up further opportunities for unique uses of contact lenses. This review examines the use, or potential use, of contact lenses aside from their role to correct refractive error. Contact lenses can be used to detect systemic and ocular surface diseases, treat and manage various ocular conditions and as devices that can correct presbyopia, control the development of myopia or be used for augmented vision. There is also discussion of new developments in contact lens packaging and storage cases. The use of contact lenses as devices to detect systemic disease has mostly focussed on detecting changes to glucose levels in tears for monitoring diabetic control. Glucose can be detected using changes in colour, fluorescence or generation of electric signals by embedded sensors such as boronic acid, concanavalin A or glucose oxidase. Contact lenses that have gained regulatory approval can measure changes in intraocular pressure to monitor glaucoma by measuring small changes in corneal shape. Challenges include integrating sensors into contact lenses and detecting the signals generated. Various techniques are used to optimise uptake and release of the drugs to the ocular surface to treat diseases such as dry eye, glaucoma, infection and allergy. Contact lenses that either mechanically or electronically change their shape are being investigated for the management of presbyopia. Contact lenses that slow the development of myopia are based upon incorporating concentric rings of plus power, peripheral optical zone(s) with add power or non-monotonic variations in power. Various forms of these lenses have shown a reduction in myopia in clinical trials and are available in various markets.
Xie L, Yin Y, Benowitz L. Chemokine CCL5 promotes robust optic nerve regeneration and mediates many of the effects of CNTF gene therapy. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2021;118(9)Abstract
Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) is a leading therapeutic candidate for several ocular diseases and induces optic nerve regeneration in animal models. Paradoxically, however, although CNTF gene therapy promotes extensive regeneration, recombinant CNTF (rCNTF) has little effect. Because intraocular viral vectors induce inflammation, and because CNTF is an immune modulator, we investigated whether CNTF gene therapy acts indirectly through other immune mediators. The beneficial effects of CNTF gene therapy remained unchanged after deleting CNTF receptor alpha (CNTFRα) in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), the projection neurons of the retina, but were diminished by depleting neutrophils or by genetically suppressing monocyte infiltration. CNTF gene therapy increased expression of C-C motif chemokine ligand 5 (CCL5) in immune cells and retinal glia, and recombinant CCL5 induced extensive axon regeneration. Conversely, CRISPR-mediated knockdown of the cognate receptor (CCR5) in RGCs or treating wild-type mice with a CCR5 antagonist repressed the effects of CNTF gene therapy. Thus, CCL5 is a previously unrecognized, potent activator of optic nerve regeneration and mediates many of the effects of CNTF gene therapy.

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