Purpose: To evaluate the effect of contrast and luminance attenuation on the multifocal electroretinogram (mfERG) responses of normal and glaucomatous eyes of cynomolgus monkeys.
Methods: Nine adult male cynomolgus monkeys with unilateral experimentally induced glaucoma were used. Hypertension-induced damage was confirmed by tomography of the optic disc. mfERGs were recorded with five different stimulus contrasts and/or luminance settings. The first-order and the first slice of second-order responses were analyzed.
Results: Waveforms of normal and glaucomatous eyes differed in shape and amplitude. Second-order responses contributed to first-order responses of the signals in the normal eyes, but made a negligible contribution to the signals in the glaucomatous eyes. Contrast and luminance attenuation affected both first- and second-order responses. The differences between signals in normal and glaucomatous eyes were sufficiently large for an unsupervised clustering algorithm to achieve accurate segregation.
Conclusions: The observations in this study indicate that outer and inner retinal generators participate in first-order mfERG responses and that both inner and outer retinal contributors respond to contrast and luminance changes in stimulus. The hypertension-induced changes in the mfERG furthermore suggest damage to both inner and outer retina.