Now in our 13th year of bringing you beautiful imagery from biomedical science every day

Search the archive of over 4000 images

Sight Mapping

Greater understanding of genetic risk factors for age-related macular degeneration

10 March 2023

Sight Mapping

Identifying the tiny changes in DNA that might be causing disease is like trying to spot a single typo in a whole book. Figuring out how that change is having an impact is even harder. Researchers taking up this challenge for adult macular degeneration – a leading cause of blindness – focussed on cells in the eye called the retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE). They explored a protein called LHX2 (red in the composite image of mouse eye structures and lab-grown human cells) that influences gene expression in the RPE. Without LHX2, protein production dropped overall, and by mapping where LHX2 and another related protein (green) bind to DNA, they managed to pinpoint key genes involved in adult macular degeneration. Variation in the DNA influences how well LHX2 can bind, altering important gene expression and revealing details of macular degeneration risk, and potentially steering future research into new treatment approaches.

Written by Anthony Lewis

Search The Archive

Submit An Image

Follow on Tumblr

Follow on Instagram

What is BPoD?

BPoD stands for Biomedical Picture of the Day. Managed by the MRC Laboratory of Medical Sciences until Jul 2023, it is now run independently by a dedicated team of scientists and writers. The website aims to engage everyone, young and old, in the wonders of biology, and its influence on medicine. The ever-growing archive of more than 4000 research images documents over a decade of progress. Explore the collection and see what you discover. Images are kindly provided for inclusion on this website through the generosity of scientists across the globe.

Read More

BPoD is also available in Catalan at with translations by the University of Valencia.