, Volume 27, Issue 1, pp 11-22
Date: 21 Mar 2007

Expression of angiogenic and fibrogenic factors in proliferative vitreoretinal disorders

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Abstract

Purpose

To investigate the expression of connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) in the retina of human subjects with diabetes mellitus, and CTGF, CD105, and gelatinase B in proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR) and proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR) epiretinal membranes.

Methods

Twelve donor eyes from six subjects with diabetes mellitus, 10 eyes from five nondiabetic subjects, 14 PDR membranes, and five PVR membranes were studied by immunohistochemical techniques. In situ zymography was used to examine gelatinolytic activity in four PDR membranes.

Results

In nondiabetic retinas, there was no immunoreactivity for CTGF. Diabetic retinas showed immunoreactivity for CTGF in ganglion cells and microglia. Vascular endothelial cells in PDR membranes expressed CTGF, CD105, and gelatinase B in 10 (71.4%), 11 (78.6%), and 5 (35.7%) membranes, respectively. Myofibroblasts in PDR membranes expressed CTGF, and gelatinase B in 14 (100%), and 6 (42.9%) membranes, respectively. There was a significant correlation between the number of blood vessels expressing the panendothelial marker CD34 and the number of blood vessels expressing CTGF (r = 0.7884; P = 0.0008), and CD105 (r = 0.6901; P = 0.0063), and the number of myofibroblasts expressing CTGF (r = 0.5922; P = 0.0257). There was a significant correlation between the number of myofibroblasts expressing α-smooth muscle actin and the number of myofibroblaasts expressing CTGF (r = 0.8393; P = 0.0002). In situ zymography showed the presence of gelatinolytic activity in vascular endothelial cells in PDR membranes. Myofibroblasts in PVR membranes expressed CTGF, and gelatinase B.

Conclusions

These results suggest a possible role of CTGF, CD105, and gelatinase B in the pathogenesis of proliferative vitreoretinal disorders.