Melanocytes and iris color

Electron microscopic findings

Pascal D. Imesch, Colleen D. Bindley, Zarir Khademian, Bill Ladd, Ronald Gangnon, Daniel Albert, Ingolf H.L. Wallow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

71 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: To quantitatively associate iris color with melanocyte pigment content. Methods: Autopsy eyes were classified as uniform-blue, uniform- hazel, or uniform-brown or showing a darker peripupillary ring. Using electron microscopic images and computerized image analysis, area, number, and size of mature melanosomes within the perinuclear cytoplasmic area only or within perinuclear and peripheral cytoplasmic areas of the superficial stromal melanocytes combined were measured. Results: Average melanosomal area per perinuclear cytoplasmic area (AMAC) and average number of melanosomes per perinuclear area (AMNC) significantly differed across iris color groups (overall P<.001). This result reflects the large difference between blue- uniform and all other color groups. A marginally significant (nominal) trend from blue-ring through brown-ring was also detected (P=.06 for AMAC and P=.07 for AMNC). The average perinuclear cytoplasmic area was larger in the central iris zone (within 1 mm around the pupillary margin) than in the intermediate iris zone (between 1 and 2 mm around the pupillary margin) (P=.002), but AMAC and AMNC did not significantly differ between zones. The average melanosome size did not differ significantly across color groups (P=.11). Conclusion: Differences in iris colors are at least partially attributed to variable AMNC and AMAC within superficial melanocytes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)443-447
Number of pages5
JournalArchives of ophthalmology
Volume114
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996
Externally publishedYes

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Melanocytes
Iris
Melanosomes
Color
Electrons
Autopsy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

Cite this

Imesch, P. D., Bindley, C. D., Khademian, Z., Ladd, B., Gangnon, R., Albert, D., & Wallow, I. H. L. (1996). Melanocytes and iris color: Electron microscopic findings. Archives of ophthalmology, 114(4), 443-447. https://doi.org/10.1001/archopht.1996.01100130439015

Melanocytes and iris color : Electron microscopic findings. / Imesch, Pascal D.; Bindley, Colleen D.; Khademian, Zarir; Ladd, Bill; Gangnon, Ronald; Albert, Daniel; Wallow, Ingolf H.L.

In: Archives of ophthalmology, Vol. 114, No. 4, 01.01.1996, p. 443-447.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Imesch, PD, Bindley, CD, Khademian, Z, Ladd, B, Gangnon, R, Albert, D & Wallow, IHL 1996, 'Melanocytes and iris color: Electron microscopic findings', Archives of ophthalmology, vol. 114, no. 4, pp. 443-447. https://doi.org/10.1001/archopht.1996.01100130439015
Imesch, Pascal D. ; Bindley, Colleen D. ; Khademian, Zarir ; Ladd, Bill ; Gangnon, Ronald ; Albert, Daniel ; Wallow, Ingolf H.L. / Melanocytes and iris color : Electron microscopic findings. In: Archives of ophthalmology. 1996 ; Vol. 114, No. 4. pp. 443-447.
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