Purpose: To characterize postnatal changes in eye size in glaucomatous DBA/2J (D2) mice and in nonglaucomatous C57BL/6J mice (B6) in vivo by means of whole-eye optical coherence tomography (OCT).
Methods: D2 (n = 32) and B6 (n = 36) mice were tested between 2 and 20 months of age in eight age bins. A custom time-domain OCT system with a center wavelength of 825 nm and an axial scan length of 7.1 mm produced axial A-scan interferograms at a rate of 20 A-lines/s with a resolution of 8 μm. Axial length (AL), corneal thickness (CT), anterior chamber depth (ACD), lens thickness (LT), vitreous chamber depth (VCD), and retinal thickness (RT) were measured in the optical axis and adjusted with corresponding refractive indices. Corneal curvature (CC) and IOP were also measured.
Results: AL increased (P < 0.001) more in the D2 (21%) than in the B6 (9%) mice. There was an interaction effect (two-way ANOVA, P < 0.001) between age and strain for AL, CT, ACD, and VCD. In the D2 mice, the lens became dislocated posteriorly. Multiple regression analysis in the D2 mice revealed an independent effect of age and IOP (P ≤ 0.01) on axial length. CC steepened in the older D2 mice, whereas it flattened in the B6 mice.
Conclusions: In D2 mice, postnatal elongation of AL is larger than that in B6 mice and is associated with a greater increase in ACD and IOP, which seems to be a causal factor. The ease of use, short acquisition time, and noninvasiveness of whole-eye OCT make it suitable for routine use in longitudinal studies of mouse models.