Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a major cause of central vision loss in developed countries. The incidence of AMD has increased rapidly in Korea. The objective of this article is to introduce the latest knowledge about the pathophysiology, diagnostic tools and therapeutic modalities of AMD. The risk factors for AMD are age, smoking, familial history, genetic factors related to the complement system, diet, and cholesterol levels. Inflammation plays an important role in the pathophysiology of AMD and is associated with the complement system. Genes associated with the complement system affect the pathophysiology, expression, progression and therapeutic response of AMD. The use of antioxidants, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids inhibits progression from moderate AMD to advanced AMD. Although there is no established treatment for dry AMD, treatment with agents that inhibit the complement system or through other mechanisms is under study. A number of anti-vascular endothelial growth factor agents have been developed for the prevention of choroidal neovascularization in the treatment of wet AMD and are being used clinically. Therapeutic alternatives to anti-vascular endothelial growth factor agents are under study.