Date of Award

Summer 8-12-2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Mathematics and Statistics

First Advisor

Dr. Yi Jiang


Age related macular degeneration (AMD) is a public health concern in an aging society. The retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) layer of the eye is a principal site of pathogenesis for AMD. Morphological characteristics of the cells in the RPE layer can be used to discriminate age and disease status of individuals. In this thesis three genotypes of mice of various ages are used to study the predictive abilities of these characteristics. The disease state is represented by two mutant genotypes and the healthy state by the wild-type. Classification analysis is applied to the RPE morphology from the different spatial regions of the RPE layer. Variable reduction is accomplished by principal component analysis (PCA) and classification analysis by the k-nearest neighbor (k-NN) algorithm. In this way the differential ability of the spatial regions to predict age and disease status by cellular variables is explored.