Unconventional aqueous humor outflow

A review

Mark Johnson*, Jay W. McLaren, Darryl R. Overby

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

23 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aqueous humor flows out of the eye primarily through the conventional outflow pathway that includes the trabecular meshwork and Schlemm's canal. However, a fraction of aqueous humor passes through an alternative or ‘unconventional’ route that includes the ciliary muscle, supraciliary and suprachoroidal spaces. From there, unconventional outflow may drain through two pathways: a uveoscleral pathway where aqueous drains across the sclera to be resorbed by orbital vessels, and a uveovortex pathway where aqueous humor enters the choroid to drain through the vortex veins. We review the anatomy, physiology and pharmacology of these pathways. We also discuss methods to determine unconventional outflow rate, including direct techniques that use radioactive or fluorescent tracers recovered from tissues in the unconventional pathway and indirect methods that estimate unconventional outflow based on total outflow over a range of pressures. Indirect methods are subject to a number of assumptions and generally give poor agreement with tracer measurements. We review the variety of animal models that have been used to study conventional and unconventional outflow. The mouse appears to be a promising model because it captures several aspects of conventional and unconventional outflow dynamics common to humans, although questions remain regarding the magnitude of unconventional outflow in mice. Finally, we review future directions. There is a clear need to develop improved methods for measuring unconventional outflow in both animals and humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)94-111
Number of pages18
JournalExperimental eye research
Volume158
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2017

Fingerprint

Aqueous Humor
Trabecular Meshwork
Sclera
Choroid
Veins
Anatomy
Animal Models
Pharmacology
Pressure
Muscles

Keywords

  • Aqueous humor dynamics
  • Indirect
  • Mouse
  • Primate
  • Trabecular
  • Tracers
  • Uveoscleral
  • Uveovortex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

Cite this

Johnson, Mark ; McLaren, Jay W. ; Overby, Darryl R. / Unconventional aqueous humor outflow : A review. In: Experimental eye research. 2017 ; Vol. 158. pp. 94-111.
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Unconventional aqueous humor outflow : A review. / Johnson, Mark; McLaren, Jay W.; Overby, Darryl R.

In: Experimental eye research, Vol. 158, 01.05.2017, p. 94-111.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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