Similarities discovered in arrangement of S-cones between humans and old-world primates


Denver, Colo.—New research shows that humans and primates have similarly arranged short-wavelength sensitive cones. The study presented this week at the 2022 Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) Annual Meeting in Denver, Colo. measured the pattern in the human cone mosaic to further comprehend human physiology and examine “how the arrangement of cone types in the mosaic impacts” color vision.

Lead researcher Sierra Schleufer, BS, PhD Candidate, and a team at the University of Washington generated 1000 Monte Carlo (MC) simulations of each region of interest (ROI) in “such that cone locations in the mosaic and number of S-cones were maintained, but positions of S-cones within the mosaic were randomized.”

From their large dataset of “spectrally-classified cones,” they found that S-cones are “arranged with non-random crystallinity in the central human cone mosaic such that they avoid a 2-cone radius of one another.” Their findings have crucial indications for color-coding retinal circuits and retinal development.

This study reveals “that the S-cone sub-mosaic trends toward a crystalline structure,” said Schleufer, it “supports the notion that S-cone topography is optimized for short-wavelength acuity and is consistent with similar results in non-human primates, suggesting shared developmental mechanism(s) driving minimum S-cone spacing.”

  • Abstract title: Crystalline arrangement of S-cones in the central human retina
  • Presentation start/end time: Monday, May 2, 3 – 5pm MT
  • Location: Poster Hall (Denver Convention Center)
  • Also available on the virtual meeting site at beginning May 1
  • Abstract Number: F0443


The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) is the largest eye and vision research organization in the world. Members include approximately 10,000 eye and vision researchers from over 75 countries. ARVO advances research worldwide into understanding the visual system and preventing, treating and curing its disorders. Learn more at

All abstracts accepted for presentation at the 2022 ARVO Annual Meeting represent previously unpublished data and conclusions. This research may be proprietary or may have been submitted for journal publication. Embargo policy: Journalists must seek approval from the presenter(s) before reporting data from paper or poster presentations. Press releases or stories on information presented at the ARVO Annual Meeting may not be released or published until the following embargo dates:

  • May 1: Official launch of presentations of all posters (both presented in-person and virtually)
  • Rolling basis: Paper session, Symposia, Minisymposia, Cross-sectional Groups, and invited speaker sessions that have specific presentation times will be embargoed until the end of those individual time slots.

Media contact:
Jenniffer Scherhaufer