A Morphoelastic Shell Model of the Eye

L. S. Kimpton, B. J. Walker, C. L. Hall, B. Bintu, David Crosby, H. M. Byrne, A. Goriely

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

The eye grows during childhood to position the retina at the correct distance behind the lens to enable focused vision, a process called emmetropization. Animal studies have demonstrated that this growth process is dependent upon visual stimuli, but dependent on genetic and environmental factors that affect the likelihood of developing myopia. The coupling between optical signal, growth, remodeling, and elastic response in the eye is particularly challenging to understand. To analyse this coupling, we develop a minimal morphoelastic model of an eye growing under intraocular pressure in response to visual stimuli. Distinct to existing three-dimensional finite-element models of the eye, we treat the sclera as a thin axisymmetric hyperelastic shell which undergoes local growth in response to external stimulus. This simplified analytic morphoelastic model provides a tractable framework in which we can evaluate various emmetropization hypotheses and understand different types of growth feedback. As an example, we demonstrate that local growth laws are sufficient to tune the global size and shape of the eye for focused vision across a wide range of parameter values.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-29
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Elasticity
Volume145
Issue number1-2
Early online date20 Jan 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Aug 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement no. 309962 (HydroZONES). BJW is supported by the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), Grant No. EP/N509711/1. AG acknowledges the support by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council of Great Britain under research grants EP/R020205/1.

Funding Information:
The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement no. 309962 (HydroZONES). BJW is supported by the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), Grant No. EP/N509711/1. AG acknowledges the support by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council of Great Britain under research grants EP/R020205/1.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature B.V. part of Springer Nature.

Keywords

  • Elastic shell
  • Emmetropization
  • Eye
  • Morphoelasticity
  • Myopia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering

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