|Programm||"Degeneration und Regeneration– Grundlagen, Diagnostik und Therapie"|
Ophthalmopathological Aspects of the Retinal Pigment Epithelium
Agostini H. T.
The retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) develops from the outer sheet of the optic cup and forms a cubic epithelium between the choroid and the sensory retina. It regulates the nutrition of the photoreceptors and is responsible for the phagozytosis of the discs shedded by the rods and cones. Zonulae occludentes located at the apical part of the RPE contribute to the blood-retina barrier as do basal parts of the RPE in the Bruch membrane. The physiological RPE plays a key role in maintaining the functional and morphological stability of the posterior pole. Hypertrophic changes of the RPE in one eye are relatively common and harmless. Less frequent are primarily hyperplastic lesions like the adenoma or adenocarcinoma of the RPE.