Meeting Banner
Abstract #3785

Melanopsin retinal ganglion cells in LHON patients: an fMRI study of brain activations under monochromatic light stimulation

Stefania Evangelisti1,2, Claudia Testa1,2, Chiara La Morgia1,3, Gilles Vandewalle4, Claudio Bianchini1,2, David Neil Manners1,2, Paola Fantazzini5,6, Michele Carbonelli3, Alfredo Sadun7,8, Caterina Tonon1,2, Valerio Carelli1,3, and Raffaele Lodi1,2

1Department of Biomedical and NeuroMotor Sciences, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy, 2Functional MR Unit, Policlinico S.Orsola - Malpighi, Bologna, Italy, 3IRCCS Institute of Neurological Sciences of Bologna, Bologna, Italy, 4Sleep Research Group; GIGA-Research, Cyclotron Research Centre/In vivo imaging unit, University of Liège, Liège, Belgium, 5Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy, 6Centro Enrico Fermi, Roma, Italy, 7Doheny Eye Institute, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, United States, 8Doheny Eye Centers of UCLA, Department of Ophthalmology, David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California, Los Angeles, CA, United States

We combined light stimulation and fMRI to investigate the contribution of melanopsin-expressing retinal ganglion cells (mRGCs) to visual and non-visual processes in Leber Hereditary Optic Neuropathy (LHON) paradigm of retinal degeneration . Monochromatic visual simulation showed a stronger effect in LHON visual cortex for blue vs red light with relatively long stimuli, supporting the hypothesis of a role for melanopsin in visual processes. When light was combined with a working memory task, blue light modulation of cognitive brain response was maintained in LHON; indeed the effect was stronger than in healthy subjects, probably because of the higher mRGCs/RGCs ratio in LHON retinas.

This abstract and the presentation materials are available to members only; a login is required.

Join Here