BACKGROUND: Acute respiratory infections (ARI) are the major worldwide health problem associated with high morbidity and mortality rates. Human adenovirus (HAdV) is one of the most common pathogens associated with viral ARI, and thus calls for specific diagnosis and better understanding of the epidemiology and clinical characteristics. METHODS: Total 4,130 children with ARI requiring hospitalization from 2012 to 2013 were retrospectively studied. Throat swab specimens were collected from each patient. Fluorescence Quantitative PCR was performed to detect adenovirus as well as other common ARI-related pathogens. The seven HAdV hypervariable regions (HVRs) of the hexon gene from fifty-seven HAdVs-positive samples collected in the seasonal peaks were sequenced. Phylogenetic analysis of HVRs was also conducted to confirm the molecular types and genetic variation. In addition, epidemiological features and co-infection with other human respiratory pathogens were investigated and analyzed. RESULTS: Of 4,130 hospitalized pediatric patients tested, the positive rates of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), Mycoplasma pneumoniae (MP), and HAdV were 13.7%, 13.2%, and 12.0%, respectively. The HAdV positive patients accounted for 7.9%, 17.2%, 17.5% and 10.7% in age groups <1, 1-3, 3-6 and 6-14 years, respectively. Eighty-four HAdV positive children were co-infected with other respiratory pathogens (84/495, 17.0%). The most common co-infection pathogens with HAdV were MP (57.1%) and Human Bocavirus (HBoV) (16.7%). The majority of HAdV infected patients were totally recovered (96.9%, 480/495); However, four (0.8%) patients, who were previously healthy and at the age of 2 years or younger died of pneumonia. Seasonal peaks of HAdV infection occurred in the summer season of 2012 and 2013; the predominant HAdV type was HAdV-3 (70%), followed by HAdV-7 (28%). These epidemiological features were different from those in Northern China. The HAdV-55 was identified and reported for the first time in Guangzhou metropolitan area. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that all the HVR sequences of the hexon gene of HAdV-3 and -7 strains have high similarity within their individual types, and these strains were also similar to those circulating in China currently, indicating the conservation of hexon genes of both HAdV-3 and HAdV-7. CONCLUSIONS: Knowledge of the epidemiological features and molecular types of HAdV, a major pathogen of pediatric ARI, as well as other co-infected respiratory pathogens circulating in Guangzhou, southern China, is vital to predict and prevent future disease outbreaks in children. This study will certainly facilitate HAdV vaccine development and treatment of HAdV infections in children.
PURPOSE: To evaluate the effect of camera flash position on the measurement of photographic margin reflex distances (MRD). METHODS: Subjects without any ophthalmic disease were prospectively enrolled after institutional review board approval. Clinical measurements of MRD1 and interpalpebral fissure were obtained. Photographs were then taken with a digital single lens reflex with built-in pop-up flash (dSLR-pop), a dSLR with lens-mounted ring flash (dSLR-ring), a point-and-shoot camera, and a smartphone, each in 4 positions: with the camera upright, rotated 90°, 180°, and 270°. The images were analyzed using ImageJ software to measure MRD1, interpalpebral fissure, horizontal white-to-white, and distance from nasal limbus to the corneal light reflex. RESULTS: Thirty-two eyes of 16 subjects were included (ages 27-65). When using the dSLR-ring, point-and-shoot, and smartphone, the difference between clinical and photographic MRD1 did not reach statistical significance. There was, however, a statistically significant difference in the upright position with dSLR-pop (mean difference 0.703 mm, σ = 0.984 mm, p = 0.0008). For dSLR-pop, photographic MRD1 in upright versus inverted position differed significantly (mean difference -0.562 mm, σ =0.348 mm, p < 0.0001). Photographic MRD1 between dSLR-pop and dSLR-ring showed significant difference in upright position (mean difference -0.572 mm, σ = 0.701 mm, p = 0.0002). There were no statistically significant differences between clinical and photographic interpalpebral fissure, and among white-to-white and nasal limbus to light reflex measurements in any position in all 4 cameras. CONCLUSIONS: When using photographs for measurement of MRD1, cameras with a near-coaxial light source and aperture have values that are most similar to clinical measurements.
Boston keratoprosthesis type 2 is used to treat severe corneal blindness secondary to cicatricial or autoimmune ocular surface disease. This case report describes an atypical eyelid mass in a 41-year-old woman with Stevens-Johnson syndrome who underwent placement of Boston keratoprosthesis type 2 in the left eye. The postoperative course was complicated by methicillin-sensitive Staphylococcus aureus keratitis and endophthalmitis requiring replacement of the keratoprosthesis. Three months thereafter, the patient presented with a progressively enlarging upper eyelid mass adjacent to the keratoprosthesis optic causing distortion of the eyelid. Excisional biopsy revealed an elongated cystic mass abutting the superior aspect of the optic. Pathologic examination was consistent with a conjunctival cyst with lipogranulomatous reaction. Removal of eyelid margins and conjunctiva, and placement of a full-thickness blepharotomy are standard steps in placement of Boston keratoprosthesis type 2, which can lead to conjunctival cysts and lipogranulomas that present as eyelid masses.
PURPOSE: Plasma kallikrein is a serine protease and circulating component of inflammation, which exerts clinically significant effects on vasogenic edema. This study examines the role of plasma kallikrein in VEGF-induced retinal edema. METHODS: Intravitreal injections of VEGF and saline vehicle were performed in plasma prekallikrein-deficient (KLKB1-/-) and wild-type (WT) mice, and in both rats and mice receiving a selective plasma kallikrein inhibitor, VA999272. Retinal vascular permeability (RVP) and retinal thickness were measured by Evans blue permeation and optical coherence tomography, respectively. The retinal kallikrein kinin system was examined by Western blotting and immunohistochemistry. Retinal neovascularization was investigated in KLKB1-/- and WT mice subjected to oxygen-induced retinopathy. RESULTS: Vascular endothelial growth factor-induced RVP and retinal thickening were reduced in KLKB1-/- mice by 68% and 47%, respectively, compared to VEGF responses in WT mice. Plasma kallikrein also contributes to TNFα-induced retinal thickening, which was reduced by 52% in KLKB1-/- mice. Systemic administration of VA999272 reduced VEGF-induced retinal thickening by 57% (P < 0.001) in mice and 53% (P < 0.001) in rats, compared to vehicle-treated controls. Intravitreal injection of VEGF in WT mice increased plasma prekallikrein in the retina, which was diffusely distributed throughout the inner and outer retinal layers. Avascular and neovascular areas induced by oxygen-induced retinopathy were similar in WT and KLKB1-/- mice. CONCLUSIONS: Vascular endothelial growth factor increases extravasation of plasma kallikrein into the retina, and plasma kallikrein is required for the full effects of VEGF on RVP and retinal thickening in rodents. Systemic plasma kallikrein inhibition may provide a therapeutic opportunity to treat VEGF-induced retina edema.
PURPOSE: To study corneal reinnervation and sensation recovery in Herpes zoster ophthalmicus (HZO). METHODS: Two patients with HZO were studied over time with serial corneal esthesiometry and laser in vivo confocal microscopy (IVCM). A Boston keratoprosthesis type 1 was implanted, and the explanted corneal tissues were examined by immunofluorescence histochemistry for βIII-tubulin to stain for corneal nerves. RESULTS: The initial central corneal IVCM performed in each patient showed a complete lack of the subbasal nerve plexus, which was in accordance with severe loss of sensation (0 of 6 cm) measured by esthesiometry. When IVCM was repeated 2 years later before undergoing surgery, case 1 showed a persistent lack of central subbasal nerves and sensation (0 of 6). In contrast, case 2 showed regeneration of the central subbasal nerves (4786 μm/mm) with partial recovery of corneal sensation (2.5 of 6 cm). Immunostaining of the explanted corneal button in case 1 showed no corneal nerves, whereas case 2 showed central and peripheral corneal nerves. Eight months after surgery, IVCM was again repeated in the donor tissue around the Boston keratoprosthesis in both patients to study innervation of the corneal transplant. Case 1 showed no nerves, whereas case 2 showed new nerves growing from the periphery into the corneal graft. CONCLUSIONS: We demonstrate that regaining corneal innervation and corneal function are possible in patients with HZO as shown by corneal sensation, IVCM, and ex vivo immunostaining, indicating zoster neural damage is not always permanent and it may recover over an extended period of time.
The purpose of the study was to investigate if xerostomia (dry mouth) is associated with symptoms and signs of dry eye disease (DED). At the Norwegian Dry Eye Clinic, patients with symptomatic DED with different etiologies were consecutively included in the study. The patients underwent a comprehensive ophthalmological work-up and completed self-questionnaires on symptoms of ocular dryness (Ocular Surface Disease Index [OSDI] and McMonnies Dry Eye Questionnaire) and the Sjögren's syndrome (SS) questionnaire (SSQ). Three hundred and eighteen patients (52% women and 48% men) with DED were included. Patient demographics were: 0 to 19 years (1%), 20 to 39 (25%), 40 to 59 (34%), 60 to 79 (35%) and 80 to 99 (5%). Xerostomia, defined as "daily symptoms of dry mouth the last three months" (as presented in SSQ) was reported by 23% of the patients. Female sex was more common among patients with xerostomia (81%) than among non-xerostomia patients (44%; P<0.001). Patients with xerostomia (60 ± 15 years) were older than those without xerostomia (51 ± 17; P<0.001). The use of prescription drugs was more prevalent among xerostomia patients (65%) than among non-xerostomia patients (35%; P<0.021; adjusted for age and sex). Patients with xerostomia had a higher OSDI score (19.0 ± 10.0) than those without xerostomia (12.9 ± 8.0; P<0.001). Moreover, xerostomia patients had more pathological meibum expressibility (0.9 ± 0.7) than those without xerostomia (0.7 ± 0.8; P = 0.046). Comparisons of OSDI and ocular signs were performed after controlling for the effects of sex, age and the number of systemic prescription drugs used. In conclusion, xerostomia patients demonstrated a higher DED symptom load and had poorer meibum expressibility than non-xerostomia patients.
There is increasing evidence that VEGF-A antagonists may be detrimental to neuronal health following ocular administration. Here we investigated firstly the effects of VEGF-A neutralization on retinal neuronal survival in the Ins2(Akita) diabetic and JR5558 spontaneous choroidal neovascularization (CNV) mice, and then looked at potential mechanisms contributing to cell death. We detected elevated apoptosis in the ganglion cell layer in both these models following VEGF-A antagonism, indicating that even when vascular pathologies respond to treatment, neurons are still vulnerable to reduced VEGF-A levels. We observed that retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) seemed to be the cells most susceptible to VEGF-A antagonism, so we looked at anterograde transport in these cells, due to their long axons requiring optimal protein and organelle trafficking. Using cholera toxin B-subunit tracer studies, we found a distal reduction in transport in the superior colliculus following VEGF-A neutralization, which occurred prior to net RGC loss. This phenomenon of distal transport loss has been described as a feature of early pathological changes in glaucoma, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease models. Furthermore, we observed increased phosphorylation of p38 MAPK and downstream Hsp27 stress pathway signaling in the retinas from these experiments, potentially providing a mechanistic explanation for our findings. These experiments further highlight the possible risks of using VEGF-A antagonists to treat ocular neovascular disease, and suggest that VEGF-A may contribute to the maintenance and function of axonal transport in neurons of the retina.
OBJECTIVES: This study examined the recent trend in use and costs of antineoplastic agents for treatment of eye malignancies in Taiwan from 2009 to 2012. We also forecasted use and costs of targeted therapies up to and including year 2016 based on the current patterns. DESIGN: Retrospective observational study focusing on the usage of targeted therapies for treatment of eye malignancy. SETTING: The monthly claims data for eye malignancy-related antineoplastic agents were retrieved from Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database (2009-2012). MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: We calculated the number of prescriptions and costs for each class of medications, and analysed their time trends. In addition, using a time series design with ARIMA models, we estimated the market share by prescription volume and the proportion of costs for targeted therapies for year 2016. RESULTS: The market share by prescription volume of targeted therapies grew from 1.56% in 2009 to 9.98% in 2012 among all antineoplastic agents, and the proportion of costs for targeted therapies rose from 15.12% in 2009 to 58.88% in 2012. Especially, the proportion of costs for protein kinase inhibitors grew from 25.62% to 45.28% among all antineoplastic agents between 2010 and 2012. The market share by prescription volume and the proportion of costs for targeted therapies for treatment of eye malignancies were predicted to reach 27.33% and 91.39% by the fourth quarter in 2016, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: This is the first study that examined and forecasted use and costs of targeted therapies for treatment of eye malignancies in Taiwan. Our findings indicate that, compared with other classes of drugs, targeted therapies are having a more and more relevant share among all treatment strategies for eye malignancies in Taiwan, and due to their high costs they are likely to cause great economic burden.
Massive retinal gliosis, a nonneoplastic retinal glial proliferation, was first described in detail over 25 years ago, before the era of immunohistochemistry, in a series of 38 cases-to which can be added 30 case reports or small series (no more than 3 cases) subsequently. We analyze a new series of 3 nontumoral intraretinal glioses and 15 cases of tumoral retinal gliosis, not all of which, strictly speaking, were massive. The data from this series are compared with the findings in previously published cases. Included are 2 cases of massive retinal gliosis diagnosed from evisceration specimens. In reviewing all published and current cases, we were able to establish 3 subgroups of retinal tumoral glioses rather than a single "massive" category: focal nodular gliosis, submassive gliosis, and massive gliosis. Among 43 reported cases, including the present series, but excluding the previous large series of 38 cases in which substantial clinical data were omitted, there were 19 men and 24 women. Their mean and median ages were 36.2 years and 36 years, respectively, with a range of 2 to 79 years. All lesions were composed of mitotically quiet, compact spindled fibrous astrocytes devoid of an Alcian blue-positive myxoid matrix. The most common associated ocular conditions were phthisis bulbi and congenital diseases or malformations. Histopathologically, all 3 tumoral categories were accompanied by progressively more extensive fibrous and osseous metaplasia of the pigment epithelium, the latter forming a clinically and diagnostically useful, almost continuous, outer rim of eggshell calcification in the submassive and massive categories that should be detectable with appropriate imaging studies. In decreasing order of frequency, microcysts and macrocysts, vascular sclerosis, exudates, calcospherites, and Rosenthal fibers were observed among the proliferating fibrous astrocytes. Immunohistochemistry was positive for glial fibrillary acidic protein in all cases and nestin in most (an intermediate cytoplasmic filament typically restricted to embryonic and reparative neural tissue). The nonneoplastic nature of all categories of gliosis was confirmed by absent TP53 (tumor suppressor gene) dysregulation, Ki-67 negativity, and intact p16 expression (the protein product of the p16 tumor suppressor gene) in the overwhelming majority of cases. These findings indicate an intrinsic attempt to regulate and maintain a low level of glial cell proliferation that becomes unsuccessful as the disease evolves. The categories of tumoral proliferation appeared to constitute a spectrum. We conclude that focal nodular tumors encompass lesions previously called retinal vasoproliferative lesions, which display the same histopathologic and immunohistochemical findings as 3 major categories of retinal gliosis characterized herein.
Anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) drugs - ranibizumab, aflibercept, and off-label bevacizumab - are vital to the treatment of common retinal diseases, including exudative age-related macular degeneration (AMD), diabetic macular edema (DME), and macular edema (ME) associated with retinal vein occlusion (RVO). Given the high prevalence of AMD and retinal vascular diseases, anti-VEGF agents represent a large cost burden to the United States (US) healthcare system. Although ranibizumab and aflibercept are 30-fold more expensive per injection than bevacizumab, the two more costly medications are commonly used in the US, even though all three have been shown to be effective and safe for treatment of these retinal diseases. We investigated the availability and content of professional ophthalmic guidelines on cost consideration in the selection of anti-VEGF agents. We found that current professional guidelines were limited in availability and lacked specific guidance on cost-based anti-VEGF drug selection. This represents a missed opportunity to encourage the practice of value-based medicine. [Full article available at http://rimed.org/rimedicaljournal-2016-05.asp, free with no login].
The nuclear hormone receptor (NHR) superfamily is composed of a wide range of receptors involved in a myriad of important biological processes, including development, growth, metabolism, and maintenance. Regulation of such wide variety of functions requires a complex system of gene regulation that includes interaction with transcription factors, chromatin-modifying complex, and the proper recognition of ligands. NHRs are able to coordinate the expression of genes in numerous pathways simultaneously. This review focuses on the role of nuclear receptors in the central nervous system and, in particular, their role in regulating the proper development and function of the brain and the eye. In addition, the review highlights the impact of mutations in NHRs on a spectrum of human diseases from autism to retinal degeneration.
BACKGROUND: Endothelial cells (EC) grown on collagen particles inhibit intimal hyperplasia in animal models when applied perivascularly, and this effect appears to be, at least in part, the result of EC-derived soluble factors that suppress local vascular inflammation. To elucidate the molecular basis of the therapeutic effects of EC grown on collagen particles, the anti-inflammatory activity of conditioned medium from these cells was characterized. METHODS: Human aortic EC (HAEC) and, for chromatin immunoprecipitation assays, human umbilical vein EC (HUVEC) were treated with tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα) in the presence of conditioned medium generated by HAEC grown on collagen particles (ECPCM), and the anti-inflammatory effects were evaluated by analysing the expression of the inflammation-related adhesion molecules E-selectin and vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1). The therapeutic activity of ECPCM was studied using the mouse strain JR5558, which develops spontaneous choroidal neovascularisation (CNV) lesions driven by local inflammation. RESULTS: ECPCM significantly suppressed TNFα-induced expression of E-selectin and VCAM-1. ECPCM did not affect the mRNA stability of the two genes, but suppressed TNFα-induced binding of the p65 subunit of NF-kB transcription factor to E-selectin and VCAM-1 promoters. In vivo, systemic ECPCM treatment significantly reduced the CNV area and the recruitment of activated macrophages to the lesions. Characterization of the molecule responsible for the anti-inflammatory activity in ECPCM indicates that it is unlikely to be a protein and that it is not any of the better characterized EC-derived anti-inflammatory molecules. CONCLUSIONS: Medium conditioned by HAEC grown on collagen particles exhibits significant anti-inflammatory activity via inhibition of genes that mediate inflammatory responses in EC.
The endothelial barrier maintains vascular and tissue homeostasis and modulates many physiological processes, such as angiogenesis. Vascular barrier integrity can be disrupted by a variety of soluble permeability factors, and changes in barrier function can exacerbate tissue damage during disease progression. Understanding endothelial barrier function is critical for vascular homeostasis. Many of the signaling pathways promoting vascular permeability can also be triggered during disease, resulting in prolonged or uncontrolled vascular leak. It is believed that recovery of the normal vasculature requires diminishing this hyperpermeable state. Although the molecular mechanisms governing vascular leak have been studied over the last few decades, recent advances have identified new therapeutic targets that have begun to show preclinical and clinical promise. These approaches have been successfully applied to an increasing number of disease conditions. New perspectives regarding how vascular leak impacts the progression of various diseases are highlighted in this review.
PURPOSE: Horizontal peripheral prisms for hemianopia provide field expansion above and below the horizontal meridian; however, there is a vertical gap leaving the central area (important for driving) without expansion. In the oblique design, tilting the bases of both prism segments toward the horizontal meridian moves the field expansion area vertically and centrally (closing the central gap) while the prisms remain in the peripheral location. However, tilting the prisms results also in a reduction of the lateral field expansion. Higher prism powers are needed to counter this effect. METHODS: We developed, implemented, and tested a series of designs aimed at increasing the prism power to reduce the central gap while maintaining wide lateral expansion. The designs included inserting the peripheral prisms into carrier lenses that included yoked prism in the opposite direction, combination of two Fresnel segments attached at the base and angled to each other (bi-part prisms), and creating Fresnel prism-like segments from nonparallel periscopic mirror pairs (reflective prisms). RESULTS: A modest increase in lateral power was achieved with yoked-prism carriers. Bi-part combination of 36Δ Fresnel segments provided high power with some reduction in image quality. Fresnel reflective prism segments have potential for high power with superior optical quality but may be limited in field extent or by interruptions of the expanded field. Extended apical scotomas, even with unilateral fitting, may limit the utility of very high power prisms. The high-power bi-part and reflective prisms enable a wider effective eye scanning range (more than 15 degrees) into the blind hemifield. CONCLUSIONS: Conventional prisms of powers higher than the available 57Δ are limited by the binocular impact of a wider apical scotoma and a reduced effective eye scanning range to the blind side. The various designs that we developed may overcome these limitations and find use in various other field expansion applications.
Mucous membrane pemphigoid is a systemic disorder that primarily affects mucous membranes. When localized to the conjunctiva, it is known as ocular cicatricial pemphigoid, a potentially blinding disease. Ocular cicatricial pemphigoid is an indication for systemic immunosuppressive treatment to achieve adequate remission. Immunosuppressive agents are selected with a "stepladder" approach, commencing with medications having the fewest side effects. We provide an update of the literature on immunomodulatory agents since 2011 as additional treatment modalities have been explored in the last 4 years.
Ocular tick infestation is a rare occurrence. The authors report a case that is unique for being the first published example from New England, for its chronic presentation, and for the inclusion of histopathologic analysis in its diagnostic workup. A 75-year-old man was evaluated for a persistent eyelid growth secondary to an incompletely removed tick that had attached 6 months earlier. The lesion was completely excised, and a partially destroyed arthropod was observed embedded within the tissue. Light microscopy demonstrated a mixed granulomatous reaction. Given the disruption of the tick's anatomy, speciation could not be performed. The patient had an uneventful recovery. A corresponding review of tick bites to the eye is provided.
PURPOSE: To evaluate the prevalence of ocular hypertension (OHT) and glaucoma in patients with chronic ocular graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). METHODS: We performed a retrospective chart review of 218 patients diagnosed with chronic ocular GVHD. Ocular hypertension was defined as intraocular pressure (IOP) ≥ 24 mmHg in either eye without any glaucomatous optic disc changes. Glaucoma suspect was defined as optic disc changes with a cup-to-disc ratio ≥ 0.7 in either eye or asymmetry of ≥ 0.3 between the two eyes. Glaucoma was defined by glaucomatous optic disc changes plus glaucomatous visual field defects in two consecutive reliable visual field tests. The number of cases of ocular hypertension, glaucoma, and glaucoma suspects was evaluated. RESULTS: Thirty-three patients (15 %) were diagnosed with OHT, eight patients (3.6 %) with suspicion of glaucoma, and one patient (0.4 %) with glaucoma. OHT occurred within 6 months of developing ocular GVHD in 60 % of the cases and within the first year in 76 %. High IOP normalized in 67 % of patients when the dosage of topical or systemic corticosteroids was lowered, and 27 % of patients required anti-glaucoma therapy. CONCLUSIONS: Ocular hypertension is a common complication in patients with ocular GVHD, with a prevalence of 15 %. The rise in intraocular pressure is often transient and resolves with management of corticosteroids in most cases. However, clinicians should be aware that nearly one-third of the patients with OHT might require anti-glaucoma treatment. The prevalences of glaucoma and suspicion of glaucoma were not higher than in the general population.