Waterford research will empower eye care community to measure nutrition in the eye

Health Science
Dr Marina Green-Gomez and Prof John M. Nolan, from the Nutrition Research Centre Ireland, School of Health Science, Waterford Institute of Technology in Ireland during a patient examination with the investigational SPECTRALIS Macular Pigment Optical Volume* (MPOV).

Dr Marina Green-Gomez and Prof John M. Nolan, from the Nutrition Research Centre Ireland, School of Health Science, Waterford Institute of Technology in Ireland during a patient examination with the investigational SPECTRALIS Macular Pigment Optical Volume* (MPOV).

Measurement of macular pigment using the Heidelberg Engineering SPECTRALIS represents the new gold standard for objective assessment of this pigment

Research published in a top journal has identified a means for a standardised assessment of macular pigment, which has been described as a unique opportunity for eye care.

The paper “Standardizing the Assessment of Macular Pigment Using a Dual-Wavelength Autofluorescence Technique”, published in Translational Vision Science & Technology in December 2019, demonstrates how the investigational SPECTRALIS® Macular Pigment Optical Volume* (MPOV) measurement provides a comprehensive and objective evaluation of the macular pigment (MP) profile.

Waterford research

The authors include researchers from Waterford Institute of Technology’s Nutrition Research Centre Ireland who specialise in the research of macular pigment.

Macular pigment has been confirmed as an important dietary variable to enhance and protect visual function, with implications for patients with AMD and other retinal pathologies. A challenge for this research has been to standardize the assessment of macular pigment. Previous techniques have been limited because of their inability to provide a full image, their subjectivity and high variability.

This new research work validates the assessment of macular pigment with the investigational dual-wavelength autofluorescence technique of the SPECTRALIS MPOV and introduces a benchmark for the clinical setting. The authors, Marina Green-Gomez, Paul S. Bernstein, Christine A. Curcio, Rachel Moran, Warren Roche and John M. Nolan, state that the SPECTRALIS MPOV “should be considered a preferred metric for the assessment of macular pigment”.

Objective

Prof John M. Nolan, from the Nutrition Research Centre Ireland, School of Health Science, Waterford Institute of Technology in Ireland said: “Now that the importance of macular pigment has been verified by substantial clinical studies with positive implications for enhancing visual performance for all populations, including patients with age-related macular degeneration; accurate, validated and standardized measurement of human macular pigment now represents a unique opportunity for eye care. The measurement of macular pigment using the Heidelberg Engineering SPECTRALIS represents the new gold standard for objective assessment of this pigment, and I am sure will empower clinicians to do more for their patients as we prepare for a new standard of vision beyond 2020!”

Beyond proposing that the dual-wavelength autofluorescence technique of the SPECTRALIS MPOV becomes the gold standard for macular pigment assessment, the authors envision the standardization of macular pigment assessment across research studies and clinical settings as the foundation for normative databases to be created.


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