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Arnold Lavaud, Petr Soukup, Louise Martin, Sonja Hartnack, Simon Pot; Spectral Domain Optical Coherence Tomography in Awake Rabbits Allows Identification of the Visual Streak, a Comparison with Histology. Trans. Vis. Sci. Tech. 2020;9(5):13. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/tvst.9.5.13.
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To evaluate visual streak (VS) identification on spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) scans in awake rabbits. To report thickness measurements in the VS and adjacent retina on OCT B-scans and histologic sections and to assess inter-method bias, precision and repeatability between OCT and histology.
Vertical SD-OCT B-scan images through the optic nerve head and VS were acquired from 16 awake, ophthalmologically healthy experimental rabbits. Scans were acquired from both eyes, which were later enucleated and processed for light microscopy. Inner retina, inner nuclear layer, outer nuclear layer, outer retina (OR) and photoreceptor outer segment (PROS) thickness were measured on OCT images and digitalized microscopy slides in- and outside of the VS, and compared using linear mixed effects models.
Both SD-OCT and histology allowed retinal layer identification and measurement. On OCT, OR and PROS were thickest in the central VS and thinnest outside the VS. Histology mirrored OCT results for central outer retinal layers but shows discrepancies for other layers likely because of postmortem processing artifacts. The method comparison demonstrated better repeatability for OCT measurements compared with histology.
Increased OR and PROS thickness compared with the adjacent retina allowed identification of the VS on SD-OCT in awake rabbits. OCT allows measurements devoid of processing artifacts in contrast to histology.
SD-OCT is possible in awake rabbits. Easy and reliable identification of the VS may facilitate the positioning and use of rabbits as model species in human macular and generalized retinal disease research
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