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Keywords:

  • drusen;
  • lipofuscin;
  • macular degeneration;
  • retinal pigment epithelium

Abstract.

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is attributed to a complex interaction of genetic and environmental factors. It is characterized by degeneration involving the retinal photoreceptors, retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) and Bruch’s membrane, as well as alterations in choroidal capillaries. AMD pathogenesis is strongly associated with chronic oxidative stress and inflammation that ultimately lead to protein damage, aggregation and degeneration of RPE. Specific degenerative findings for AMD are accumulation of intracellular lysosomal lipofuscin and extracellular drusens. In this review, we discuss thoroughly RPE-derived mechanisms in AMD pathology.