The present study characterized the expression profiles of the inflammatory cytokines VEGF[alpha] and TGF[beta]2 in the ERMs and ILMs in retinal disorders such as RRD, DR, and iERM. There might be several important factors that determine cytokine levels either inside the operated eye or the entire body.
Our results reveal that VEGF[alpha] and TGF[beta]2 associated with angiogenesis and wound healing processes in eyes with RRD, PDR, and iERM were more upregulated in ERMs than in ILMs.
Gene Assay ID GAPDH Hs03929097_g1 VEGFA Hs00900055_m1 Table 3: Expression levels of VEGF[alpha] and TGF[beta]2 in the ERMs and ILMs in eyes with idiopathic epiretinal membranes (iERMs).
The average duration in which the membranes were present in the eye before removal was 6.4 months (range 3-10 months) for PDR and 8.6 months (range 2-16 months) for iERM. All subjects underwent a complete ophthalmic examination: best corrected visual acuity (BCVA), tonometry, slit lamp examination of anterior and posterior segment, ultrasonography of the eye, and optical coherence tomography (OCT) of the central retina.
The examined group comprised 6 patients (3 females and 3 males, mean age 72.9 years; range 66-80 years) with secondary ERMs after PDR and the control group consisted of 11 patients (8 females and 3 males, mean age 69.7; range 61-79 years) with iERMs (Table 1).
In the ERMs, the mRNA level of IGF1 was significantly higher in the patients with diabetes (median = 271 mRNA copies/[micro]g of total RNA) compared to the control iERMs of nondiabetic group (median = 85 mRNA copies/[micro]g of total RNA).
Corresponding to the results obtained for diabetic patients, in iERMs and PBMCs from the nondiabetic patients, no correlations between the expression of IGF1, IGF1R, and IGFBP3 genes and time interval between diagnosis of the condition and the actual surgery were detected (Table 3).
Statistically significant higher mRNA levels of IGF1 and IGF1R in the ERMs of patients with PDR compared to the control subjects with iERMs in our results confirmed that the IGFs may play a key role in development or progression of PDR.