This series of articles illustrates the fluid nature of research. Theories are proposed based on specific findings, other studies are done to verify the facts and contribute to the theory and decisions are made as to whether the data continues to support the theory. Science evolves.Quinn GE, Shin CH, Maguire MG, Stone RA (Graham E. Quinn, Chai H. Shin, Maureen G. Maguire & Richard A. Stone)(May 1999). Myopia and ambient lighting at night. Nature 399, 113-114 (13 May 1999) (ABSTRACT) or pdf (FULL TEXT)
MyopiaPrevention.org comment: This report set off the night-light discussion that leaving the night-light on in the nursery made the child myopic later in life.CNN.com, May 13, 1999. Night-light may lead to nearsightedness (NEWS ARTICLE)
MyopiaPrevention.org comment: The popular press (in this case CNN) picked up on the report (Quinn GE, et al. May 1999) that night-lights cause myopia in children.Gwiazda J, Ong E, Held R, Thorn F (2000). Myopia and ambient night-time lighting. (Brief Communication) Nature 404, 144 (9 March 2000)
MyopiaPrevention.org comment: Gwiazda J states they have been unable to confirm the results of Quinn GE (May 1999) but instead find that myopic parents are more likely to both leave the light on and have myopic children so that child-myopia and night lights being left on are both caused by the parental myopia, not the night-light causing the child myopia.Karla Zadnik, Lisa A. Jones, Brett C. Irvin, Robert N. Kleinstein, Ruth E. Manny, Julie A. Shin & Donald O. Mutti. (2000) Vision: Myopia and ambient night-time lighting. (Brief Communication) Nature 404, 144 (9 March 2000)
MyopiaPrevention.org comment: K. Zadnik reports that they have been unable to duplicate the night-light-myopia connection reported by Quinn GE et al. (May 1999)Richard A. Stone, Maureen G. Maguire1 & Graham E. Quinn. (2000) Vision: reply: Myopia and ambient night-time lighting (Brief Communications) Nature 404, 144 (9 March 2000)
MyopiaPrevention.org comment: RA Stone replies to Gwiazda and Zadnik, basically saying that E. Quinn's (1999) results can't be dismissed without proof, although he doesn't actually say whether the proof was shown or not.Guggenheim JA, Hill C, Yam T-F (2003). Myopia, genetics, and ambient lighting at night in a UK sample. (ABSTRACT) Brit J Ophthalmology 87: 580-2
MyopiaPrevention.org comment: Sleeping with the nightlight on while an infant does not make one myopic later in life. And so the night-light story sits for now. The light-dark cycle, the role melatonin and its signaling of time-dependant growth cycles in the eye and other factors will continue to be studied. Science is fluid.