In vivo measurements of the viscoelasticity of the human vitreous humor.


A point of source of light against a dark background is perceived by the human retina as a point image enhanced by off-axis points (rays if the source is polychromatic) of light scattered from objects along the optic axis. As a consequence of movement of the vitreous humor, scattering centers imbedded there impart of this scattering pattern a corresponding movement. A method has been devised to give the vitreous humor reproducible initial conditions and to record the observed relaxation of the scattering pattern to its new rest position. The vitreous humor is found to be overdamped, and the heretofore unreported shear elastic modulus has been determined. A striking gravitational effect is revealed by comparing observations along a horizontal optic axis with ones along a vertical optic axis. For the former, gravitational torque is found to dominate the elastic torque. The reason nature has developed a slow-responding gravitational sensor in the vitreous humor is not clear.

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@article{Zimmerman1980InVM, title={In vivo measurements of the viscoelasticity of the human vitreous humor.}, author={Rebecca L Zimmerman}, journal={Biophysical journal}, year={1980}, volume={29 3}, pages={539-44} }