The pathophysiology of cigarette smoking and age-related macular degeneration

S. S. Ni Dhubhghaill, M. T. Cahill, M. Campbell, L. Cassidy, M. M. Humphries, P. Humphries

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contribution

38 Citations (Scopus)


Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common form of visual impairment, in people over 65, in the Western world. AMD is a multifactorial disease with genetic and environmental factors influencing disease progression. Cigarette smoking is the most significant environmental influence with an estimated increase in risk of 2- to 4-fold. Smoke-induced damage in AMD is mediated through direct oxidation, depletion of antioxidant protection, immune system activation and atherosclerotic vascular changes. Moreover, cigarette smoke induces angiogenesis promoting choroidal neovascularisation and progression to neovascular AMD. Further investigation into the effects of cigarette smoke through in vitro and in vivo experimentation will provide a greater insight into the pathogenesis of age-related macular degeneration.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRetinal Degenerative Diseases: Laboratory and Therapeutic Investigations
Place of PublicationNew York ; London
PublisherSpringer, Springer Nature
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9781441913982
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Publication series

NameAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
ISSN (Print)00652598

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