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I am having a hard time recalling where I had heard this, but I do recall someone saying (perhaps in a video) that cells in the retina divide very rapidly during infancy due to ongoing development of the eye - they were saying this as a justification for the incurrence of mutations in the retinal cells of infants. I searched this up recently and can't find any source that supports this claim. I did learn that there are stem cells in the retina that remain after birth, so I was wondering if the person meant to say there are lots of undifferentiated cells in the retina of infants. I think the more holistic question that I should be asking is: why do eye conditions like retinoblastoma develop primarily in infants?

If it is because of a large number of undifferentiated cells in the retina of infants, can I also be let known when (i.e. at what stage in life) these undifferentiated cells exist in highest number and when they all (or at least mostly all) become fully differentiated?

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    $\begingroup$ I see three different questions in one post; adding some of your own research background is a great way to focus the question and specify a single question, which is better answerable in the Q&A format of the SE network. You can post multiple different questions if need be, but please add your own research efforts in regardless. $\endgroup$
    – AliceD
    Commented Sep 7, 2022 at 10:48

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why do eye conditions like retinoblastoma develop primarily in infants?

One explanation is that infants grow fast. In general, each cell division is a risk of breaking/losing chromosomes. Breaks need to be repaired, but that can be faulty and lead to cancer. This explains why infants get cancer in general.

Retinal cells may be especially prone to DNA damage since there is no pigment to reduce damage by UV-light.

When do they all become fully differentiated?

They never become all differentiated. Many tissues contain adult stem cells that keep their stem-cell state until death. Their purpose is to regenerate tissue, especially when tissued need to be constantly renewing themselves (e.g. skin, intestines, and maybe retinal stem cells, too ). (Reh et al.)

when (i.e. at what stage in life) these undifferentiated cells exist in highest number?

The highest ratio of undifferentiated/differentiated is probably found during embryonic development.

In some vertebrates, the development of the retina continues throughout life (Bhatia et al 2010)

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