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February 1978

Human Albinism: Light and Electron Microscopy Study

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, the Yale New Haven Hospital, New Haven, Conn. Dr Fulton is now with the Children's Hospital, Boston. Dr Albert and Mr Craft are now with the Howe Laboratory, Boston.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1978;96(2):305-310. doi:10.1001/archopht.1978.03910050173014

• The eyes of a 13-year-old leukemic boy with the attributes of tyrosinase-negative oculocutaneous albinism were obtained for light and electron microscopic study. Repeated examinations had failed to reveal WBCs with giant oxidase-positive granules, and leukemic involvement of the fundus never occurred. Light microscopic examination of horizontal and vertical sections through the retina confirms earlier reports that the fovea is absent in albinos. The synaptic apparatus of the photoreceptor terminals appears abnormal. The rough endoplasmic reticulum of the retinal pigment epithelial cells is sparse though the presence of phagosomes suggests that phagocytic function is intact. Suggestions as to the importance that the morphological findings may have on albino visual function are made.

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