Proliferative diabetic retinopathy is associated with a low level of the natural ocular anti-angiogenic agent pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF) in aqueous humor. A pilot study

Bernhard O. Boehm*, G. Lang, B. Feldmann, A. Kurkhaus, S. Rosinger, O. Volpert, G. K. Lang, N. Bouck

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

Retinopathy is the most common microvascular diabetes complication and represents a major threat to the eyesight. The aim of this study was to address the role of pro- and anti-angiogenic molecules in diabetic retinopathy in the aqueous humor of the eye. Aqueous humor was collected at cataract surgery from 19 diabetic patients and from 13 age- and sex-matched normoglycemic controls. Levels of pro-angiogenic vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and angiogenic inhibitor pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF) were determined. Angiogenic activity of the aqueous humor was quantified by measuring its effect on the migration of capillary endothelial cells. In the aqueous fluid, VEGF levels were increased in diabetics (mean values: 501 vs. 367 pg/ml; p = 0.05), compared to controls. PEDF was found to be decreased in diabetics (mean values: 2080 vs. 5780 ng/ml; p = 0.04) compared to controls. In seven diabetic patients with proliferative retinopathy, the most profound finding was a significant decrease of the PEDF level (mean value: 237 ng/ml), whereas VEGF levels were comparable to diabetic patients without proliferation (mean value: 3153; p = 0.003). Angiogenic activity in samples of patients from the control group was generally inhibitory due to PEDF, and inhibition was blocked by neutralizing antibodies to PEDF. Likewise, in diabetics without proliferation, angiogenic activity was also blocked by antibodies to PEDF. We will demonstrate here that the level of the natural ocular anti-angiogenic agent PEDF is inversely associated with proliferative retinopathy. PEDF is an important negative regulator of angiogenic activity of aqueous humor. Our data may have implications for the development of novel regimens for diabetic retinopathy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)382-386
Number of pages5
JournalHormone and Metabolic Research
Volume35
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2003

Keywords

  • Angiogenesis
  • Angiogenic Inhibitors
  • Aqueous Humor
  • Diabetic Retinopathy
  • Pigment Epithelium-Derived Factor (PEDF)
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical

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