Lipids, oxidized lipids, oxidation-specific epitopes, and Age-related Macular Degeneration

James T. Handa, Marisol Cano, Lei Wang, Sayantan Datta, Tongyun Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness among the elderly in western societies. While antioxidant micronutrient treatment is available for intermediate non-neovascular disease, and effective anti-vascular endothelial growth factor treatment is available for neovascular disease, treatment for early AMD is lacking due to an incomplete understanding of the early molecular events. The role of lipids, which accumulate in the macula, and their oxidation, has emerged as an important factor in disease development. These oxidized lipids can either directly contribute to tissue injury or react with amine on proteins to form oxidation-specific epitopes, which can induce an innate immune response. If inadequately neutralized, the inflammatory response from these epitopes can incite tissue injury during disease development. This review explores how the accumulation of lipids, their oxidation, and the ensuing inflammatory response might contribute to the pathogenesis of AMD. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Lipid modification and lipid peroxidation products in innate immunity and inflammation edited by Christoph J. Binder.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)430-440
Number of pages11
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2017


  • Age-related Macular Degeneration
  • Basal deposits
  • Bruch's membrane
  • Drusen
  • Oxidation-specific epitopes
  • Retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE)
  • Very low-density lipoprotein (LDL)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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