Age-dependence of the peripheral defocus of the isolated human crystalline lens

Bianca Maceo Heilman, Ashik Mohamed, Marco Ruggeri, Siobhan Williams, Arthur Ho, Jean Marie Parel, Fabrice Manns

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


PURPOSE. To characterize the peripheral defocus of isolated human crystalline lenses and its age dependence. METHODS. Data were acquired on 116 isolated lenses from 99 human eyes (age range, 0.03-61 years; postmortem time, 40.1 ± 21.4 hours). Lenses were placed in a custom-built combined laser ray tracing and optical coherence tomography system that measures the slopes of rays refracted through the lens for on-axis and off-axis incidence angles. Ray slopes were measured by recording spot patterns as a function of axial position with an imaging sensor mounted on a positioning stage below the tissue chamber. Delivery angles ranged from -30° to +30° in 5° increments using a 6 mm × 6 mm raster scan with 0.5-mm spacing. Lens power at each angle was calculated by finding the axial position that minimizes the root-mean-square size of the spot pattern formed by the 49 central rays, corresponding to a 3-mm zone on-axis. The age dependence of the on-axis and off-axis optical power and the relative peripheral defocus (difference between off-axis and on-axis power) of lenses were quantified. RESULTS. At all angles, lens power decreased significantly with age. Lens power increased with increasing delivery angle for all lenses, corresponding to a shift toward myopic peripheral defocus. There was a statistically significant decrease in the lens peripheral defocus with age. CONCLUSIONS. The isolated human lens power increases with increasing field angle. The lens relative peripheral defocus decreases with age, which may contribute to the age-related changes of ocular peripheral defocus during refractive development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number15
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2021


  • Aging
  • Crystalline lens
  • Laser ray tracing
  • Myopia
  • Optics
  • Peripheral defocus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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