Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation





First Advisor

Dr. Jayakrishna Ambati

Second Advisor

Dr. Steven Estus


Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a principal cause of blindness in the United States and other industrialized nations. An estimated 10 million Americans are afflicted with AMD, which is comparable in scope to the 12 million living with cancer, or the 5 million with Alzheimer’s disease. The prevalence of AMD steadily increases with age, affecting 2% of the population at age 40, and one in four people by age 80. For reasons that are not fully understood, AMD is more common in lightly-pigmented and female populations. Treatment of AMD is largely an unmet need: There are no FDA approved therapies except for a small percentage of individuals with end-stage disease. This dissertation investigates the mechanisms of AMD pathogenesis and offers insight into novel therapeutic strategies for this disease.

Included in

Ophthalmology Commons