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A large population study reveals a novel association between congenital color vision deficiency and environmental factors

Abstract

Purpose

To assess the associations between the prevalence of congenital color vision deficiency (CVD) and genetics and environment, represented by place of origin (ethnic background) and place of birth, respectively.

Methods

This is a retrospective study of the computerized database of the northern recruitment center of Israel of 53,895 consecutive male Jewish conscripts 16–19 years old, who completed the medical profiling process between 1988 and 2011. CVD was diagnosed using the 24-pseudo-isochromatic plate Ishihara test. Associations of CVD prevalence with sociodemographic variables, anthropometric indices, refractive errors, and mainly place of origin and place of birth were tested by both univariate analysis and multivariate regression models.

Results

Elevated BMI (obesity) and blood pressure (hypertension), as well as myopia, were all positively associated with congenital CVD. The composition of the study population provides a unique opportunity to investigate the relationship between ethnicity and environment. The prevalence of CVD significantly differs among subpopulations of different ethnic background as well as among those who were born in different geographical locations. Additionally, differences in the prevalence of CVD (1.2–1.6%) were observed among conscripts from the same origin, who were born in Israel, compared to those who were born elsewhere. Both place of origin (p < 0.01) and place of birth (p < 0.05) were associated with the prevalence of CVD in a multivariable regression model.

Conclusion

This study affirms previously established associations of CVD with certain variables and reveals a possible novel association of CVD with environmental factors.

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Availability of data and material

The datasets generated for this study will not be made publicly available. The IDF Helsinki committee that approved the research has restricted any public approach to the datasets.

Code availability

N/A.

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Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Contributions

YM substantially contributed to the conception and design of the study, data acquisition, data analyses, and interpretation, and was a major contributor in writing the manuscript. GA substantially contributed to the interpretation of the data and was a major contributor in writing the manuscript. AS substantially contributed to the interpretation of the data and was a major contributor in writing the manuscript. YC substantially contributed to the conception and design of the study, and the acquisition and interpretation of the data, and was a major contributor in writing the manuscript. EM substantially contributed to the conception and design of the study, and the acquisition and interpretation of the data, and was a major contributor in writing the manuscript. All authors were involved in drafting the article, revising it critically. The final version of the article was approved by all authors. All authors meet all three ICMJE authorship criteria.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Yossy Machluf.

Ethics declarations

Ethics approval

Human subjects were not included in this study; rather, it relied on a computerized database in which subjects could not be identified. This study was approved on the basis of participants’ anonymity by an IDF Institutional Review Board (IRB) ethics committee (approval number: #1199–2012), and adhered to the tenets of the Declaration of Helsinki.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no competing interests.

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Yoram Chaiter and Eedy Mezer share senior authorship

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Machluf, Y., Allon, G., Sebbag, A. et al. A large population study reveals a novel association between congenital color vision deficiency and environmental factors. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00417-021-05417-4

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Keywords

  • Congenital color vision deficiency
  • Color blindness
  • Ethnicity
  • Place of birth
  • Anthropometric indices
  • Regression model