In the January 2014 issue of Optometry and Vision Science researchers believe that AMD could largely be due to abnormal eye movement patterns and fixations associated with the condition. The authors found that the AMD patients made more frequent eye movements, known as saccades, compared to those with healthy vision. This could indicate that the problem that AMD patients have with recognizing faces is not only due to their overall vision loss, but also related to an abnormality in eye movement patterns.
These abnormal scanning patterns which cause difficulty in reading faces are also associated with other conditions including schizophrenia and autism. The researchers have proposed a few reasons behind why these abnormal patterns in AMD patients occur. They believe it could have a lot to do with the way the brain coordinates eye movement. Other research studies show elevation of IL-1α, IL-1β, IL-4, IL-5, IL-10, IL-13, and IL-17 in the serum of AMD patients which supports the hypothesis of AMD as an inflammatory disease. There is still a lot of science to do on the cause of AMD.