On Tuesday, June 23, 2015, Frances Rucker, Associate Professor at New England College of Optometry, will present, “Light and Development of Refractive Error.”
Abstract: At birth most, but not all eyes, are too small, they are hyperopic. Over the course of the first few years of life the eye grows, becoming emmetropic, through a process called emmetropization. In some cases, emmetropization fails, the eye grows too much, and the eye becomes myopic. The eye is able to guide the emmetropization process by using visual cues, but the brain’s interpretation of these cues is affected by several factors in the visual environment. For example, visual environments that are deficient in blue light (as with some indoor illuminants) or activities that affect the rate of visual stimulation (reading, video games) will change the way that the emmetropization mechanism functions and drive the refraction away from emmetropia. This talk will review recent research on the visual cues for emmetropization and explore the question of how the eye knows when it is defocused and why some eyes may develop myopia under certain visual conditions.