Abstract Aluminum (Al) was injected into the rabbit eye as a potential long-term model system for Al-induced neurofibrillary degeneration (NFD). Neurofibrillary tangles made up of 10 nm phosphorylated neurofilaments were observed in a subpopulation of retinal ganglion cells, located primarily in the peripheral retina. The distribution of affected cells suggested a differential susceptibility of ganglion cells to Al intoxication. Importantly, none of the animals demonstrated any of the central neurological dysfunctions characteristic of previous Al intoxication models. The retinal model should allow for long-term studies of Al intoxication and its potential relationship to neurofibrillary degenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease.