Current concepts in the pathophysiology of glaucoma

Indian J Ophthalmol. Jul-Aug 2009;57(4):257-66. doi: 10.4103/0301-4738.53049.


Glaucoma, the second leading cause of blindness, is characterized by changes in the optic disc and visual field defects. The elevated intraocular pressure was considered the prime factor responsible for the glaucomatous optic neuropathy involving death of retinal ganglion cells and their axons. Extensive investigations into the pathophysiology of glaucoma now reveal the role of multiple factors in the development of retinal ganglion cell death. A better understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms involved in the onset and progression of glaucomatous optic neuropathy is crucial in the development of better therapeutic options. This review is an effort to summarize the current concepts in the pathophysiology of glaucoma so that newer therapeutic targets can be recognized. The literature available in the National Medical Library and online Pubmed search engine was used for literature review.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Apoptosis*
  • Eye / blood supply
  • Glaucoma / complications
  • Glaucoma / etiology
  • Glaucoma / physiopathology*
  • Glaucoma / therapy
  • Glutamic Acid / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Ischemia / complications
  • Ocular Hypertension / complications
  • Retinal Ganglion Cells*


  • Glutamic Acid