Diabetic Eye Disease

Diabetic Eye Disease Publications

Jampol LM, Glassman AR, Liu D, Aiello LP, Bressler NM, Duh EJ, Quaggin S, Wells JA, Wykoff CC, Wykoff CC. Plasma Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Concentrations after Intravitreous Anti-Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Therapy for Diabetic Macular Edema. Ophthalmology 2018;Abstract
PURPOSE: To assess systemic vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-A levels after treatment with intravitreous aflibercept, bevacizumab, or ranibizumab. DESIGN: Comparative-effectiveness trial with participants randomly assigned to 2 mg aflibercept, 1.25 mg bevacizumab, or 0.3 mg ranibizumab after a re-treatment algorithm. PARTICIPANTS: Participants with available plasma samples (N = 436). METHODS: Plasma samples were collected before injections at baseline and 4-week, 52-week, and 104-week visits. In a preplanned secondary analysis, systemic-free VEGF levels from an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay were compared across anti-VEGF agents and correlated with systemic side effects. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Changes in the natural log (ln) of plasma VEGF levels. RESULTS: Baseline free VEGF levels were similar across all 3 groups. At 4 weeks, mean ln(VEGF) changes were -0.30±0.61 pg/ml, -0.31±0.54 pg/ml, and -0.02±0.44 pg/ml for the aflibercept, bevacizumab, and ranibizumab groups, respectively. The adjusted differences between treatment groups (adjusted confidence interval [CI]; P value) were -0.01 (-0.12 to +0.10; P = 0.89), -0.31 (-0.44 to -0.18; P < 0.001), and -0.30 (-0.43 to -0.18; P < 0.001) for aflibercept-bevacizumab, aflibercept-ranibizumab, and bevacizumab-ranibizumab, respectively. At 52 weeks, a difference in mean VEGF changes between bevacizumab and ranibizumab persisted (-0.23 [-0.38 to -0.09]; P < 0.001); the difference between aflibercept and ranibizumab was -0.12 (P = 0.07) and between aflibercept and bevacizumab was +0.11 (P = 0.07). Treatment group differences at 2 years were similar to 1 year. No apparent treatment differences were detected at 52 or 104 weeks in the cohort of participants not receiving injections within 1 or 2 months before plasma collection. Participants with (N = 9) and without (N = 251) a heart attack or stroke had VEGF levels that appeared similar. CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that decreases in plasma free-VEGF levels are greater after treatment with aflibercept or bevacizumab compared with ranibizumab at 4 weeks. At 52 and 104 weeks, a greater decrease was observed in bevacizumab versus ranibizumab. Results from 2 subgroups of participants who did not receive injections within at least 1 month and 2 months before collection suggest similar changes in VEGF levels after stopping injections. It is unknown whether VEGF levels return to normal as the drug is cleared from the system or whether the presence of the drug affects the assay's ability to accurately measure free VEGF. No significant associations between VEGF concentration and systemic factors were noted.
Fu Z, Wang Z, Liu C-H, Gong Y, Cakir B, Liegl R, Sun Y, Meng SS, Burnim SB, Arellano I, Moran E, Duran R, Poblete A, Cho SS, Talukdar S, Akula JD, Hellström A, Smith LEH. Fibroblast Growth Factor 21 Protects Photoreceptor Function in Type 1 Diabetic Mice. Diabetes 2018;Abstract
Retinal neuronal abnormalities occur before vascular changes in diabetic retinopathy. Accumulating experimental evidence suggests that neurons control vascular pathology in diabetic and other neovascular retinal disease. Therefore, normalizing neuronal activity in diabetes may prevent vascular pathology. We investigated whether fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21) prevented retinal neuronal dysfunction in insulin-deficient diabetic mice. We found that in diabetic neural retina, photoreceptor rather than inner retinal function was most affected and administration of the long-acting FGF21 analog, PF-05231023 restored the retinal neuronal functional deficits detected by electroretinography. PF-05231023 administration protected against diabetes-induced disorganization of photoreceptor segments seen in retinal cross section with immunohistochemistry and attenuated the reduction in the thickness of photoreceptor segments measured by optical coherence tomography. PF-05231023, independent of its downstream metabolic modulator adiponectin, reduced inflammatory marker IL-1β mRNA levels. PF-05231023 activated the AKT-NRF2 pathway and reduced IL-1β expression in stressed photoreceptors. PF-05231023 administration did not change retinal expression of VEGFA, suggesting a novel therapeutic approach for the prevention of early diabetic retinopathy by protecting photoreceptor function in diabetes.
Li W, Webster KA, LeBlanc ME, Tian H. Secretogranin III: a diabetic retinopathy-selective angiogenic factor. Cell Mol Life Sci 2018;75(4):635-647.Abstract
Secretogranin III (Scg3) is a member of the granin protein family that regulates the biogenesis of secretory granules. Scg3 was recently discovered as an angiogenic factor, expanding its functional role to extrinsic regulation. Unlike many other known angiogenic factors, the pro-angiogenic actions of Scg3 are restricted to pathological conditions. Among thousands of quantified endothelial ligands, Scg3 has the highest binding activity ratio to diabetic vs. healthy mouse retinas and lowest background binding to normal vessels. In contrast, vascular endothelial growth factor binds to and stimulates angiogenesis of both diabetic and control vasculature. Consistent with its role in pathological angiogenesis, Scg3-neutralizing antibodies alleviate retinal vascular leakage in mouse models of diabetic retinopathy and retinal neovascularization in oxygen-induced retinopathy mice. This review summarizes our current knowledge of Scg3 as a regulatory protein of secretory granules, highlights its new role as a highly disease-selective angiogenic factor, and envisions Scg3 inhibitors as "selective angiogenesis blockers" for targeted therapy.
Salongcay RP, Silva PS. The Role of Teleophthalmology in the Management of Diabetic Retinopathy. Asia Pac J Ophthalmol (Phila) 2018;Abstract
The emergence of diabetes as a global epidemic is accompanied by the rise in diabetes‑related retinal complications. Diabetic retinopathy, if left undetected and untreated, can lead to severe visual impairment and affect an individual's productivity and quality of life. Globally, diabetic retinopathy remains one of the leading causes of visual loss in the working‑age population. Teleophthalmology for diabetic retinopathy is an innovative means of retinal evaluation that allows identification of eyes at risk for visual loss, thereby preserving vision and decreasing the overall burden to the health care system. Numerous studies worldwide have found teleophthalmology to be a reliable and cost‑efficient alternative to traditional clinical examinations. It has reduced barriers to access to specialized eye care in both rural and urban communities. In teleophthalmology applications for diabetic retinopathy, it is critical that standardized protocols in image acquisition and evaluation are used to ensure low image ungradable rates and maintain the quality of images taken. Innovative imaging technology such as ultrawide field imaging has the potential to provide significant benefit with integration into teleophthalmology programs. Teleophthalmology programs for diabetic retinopathy rely on a comprehensive and multidisciplinary approach with partnerships across specialties and health care professionals to attain wider acceptability and allow evidence‑based eye care to reach a much broader population.
Fu Z, Löfqvist CA, Liegl R, Wang Z, Sun Y, Gong Y, Liu C-H, Meng SS, Burnim SB, Arellano I, Chouinard MT, Duran R, Poblete A, Cho SS, Akula JD, Kinter M, Ley D, Hansen Pupp I, Talukdar S, Hellström A, Smith LEH. Photoreceptor glucose metabolism determines normal retinal vascular growth. EMBO Mol Med 2018;10(1):76-90.Abstract
The neural cells and factors determining normal vascular growth are not well defined even though vision-threatening neovessel growth, a major cause of blindness in retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) (and diabetic retinopathy), is driven by delayed normal vascular growth. We here examined whether hyperglycemia and low adiponectin (APN) levels delayed normal retinal vascularization, driven primarily by dysregulated photoreceptor metabolism. In premature infants, low APN levels correlated with hyperglycemia and delayed retinal vascular formation. Experimentally in a neonatal mouse model of postnatal hyperglycemia modeling early ROP, hyperglycemia caused photoreceptor dysfunction and delayed neurovascular maturation associated with changes in the APN pathway; recombinant mouse APN or APN receptor agonist AdipoRon treatment normalized vascular growth. APN deficiency decreased retinal mitochondrial metabolic enzyme levels particularly in photoreceptors, suppressed retinal vascular development, and decreased photoreceptor platelet-derived growth factor (Pdgfb). APN pathway activation reversed these effects. Blockade of mitochondrial respiration abolished AdipoRon-induced Pdgfb increase in photoreceptors. Photoreceptor knockdown of Pdgfb delayed retinal vascular formation. Stimulation of the APN pathway might prevent hyperglycemia-associated retinal abnormalities and suppress phase I ROP in premature infants.
Maturi RK, Glassman AR, Liu D, Beck RW, Bhavsar AR, Bressler NM, Jampol LM, Melia M, Punjabi OS, Salehi-Had H, Sun JK, Sun JK. Effect of Adding Dexamethasone to Continued Ranibizumab Treatment in Patients With Persistent Diabetic Macular Edema: A DRCR Network Phase 2 Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Ophthalmol 2018;136(1):29-38.Abstract
Importance: Some eyes have persistent diabetic macular edema (DME) following anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) therapy for DME. Subsequently adding intravitreous corticosteroids to the treatment regimen might result in better outcomes than continued anti-VEGF therapy alone. Objective: To compare continued intravitreous ranibizumab alone with ranibizumab plus intravitreous dexamethasone implant in eyes with persistent DME. Design, Setting, and Participants: Phase 2 multicenter randomized clinical trial conducted at 40 US sites in 129 eyes from 116 adults with diabetes between February 2014 and December 2016. Eyes had persistent DME, with visual acuity of 20/32 to 20/320 after at least 3 anti-VEGF injections before a run-in phase, which included an additional 3 monthly 0.3-mg ranibizumab injections. Data analysis was according to intent to treat. Interventions: Following the run-in phase, study eyes that had persistent DME and were otherwise eligible were randomly assigned to receive 700 μg of dexamethasone (combination group, 65 eyes) or sham treatment (ranibizumab group, 64 eyes) in addition to continued 0.3-mg ranibizumab in both treatment arms as often as every 4 weeks based on a structured re-treatment protocol. Main Outcomes and Measures: The primary outcome was change in mean visual acuity letter score at 24 weeks as measured by the electronic Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (E-ETDRS). The principal secondary outcome was change in mean central subfield thickness as measured with the use of optical coherence tomography. Results: Of the 116 randomized patients, median age was 65 years (interquartile range [IQR], 58-71 years); 50.9% were female and 60.3% were white. Mean (SD) improvement in visual acuity from randomization was 2.7 (9.8) letters in the combination group and 3.0 (7.1) letters in the ranibizumab group, with the adjusted treatment group difference (combination minus ranibizumab) of -0.5 letters (95% CI, -3.6 to 2.5; 2-sided P = .73). Mean (SD) change in central subfield thickness in the combination group was -110 (86) μm compared with -62 (97) μm for the ranibizumab group (adjusted difference, -52; 95% CI, -82 to -22; 2-sided P < .001). Nineteen eyes (29%) in the combination group experienced increased intraocular pressure or initiated treatment with antihypertensive eyedrops compared with 0 in the ranibizumab group (2-sided P < .001). Conclusions and Relevance: Although its use is more likely to reduce retinal thickness and increase intraocular pressure, the addition of intravitreous dexamethasone to continued ranibizumab therapy does not improve visual acuity at 24 weeks more than continued ranibizumab therapy alone among eyes with persistent DME following anti-VEGF therapy. Trial Registration: clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT01945866.
Laíns I, Talcott KE, Santos AR, Marques JH, Gil P, Gil J, Figueira J, Husain D, Kim IK, Miller JW, Silva R, Miller JB. CHOROIDAL THICKNESS IN DIABETIC RETINOPATHY ASSESSED WITH SWEPT-SOURCE OPTICAL COHERENCE TOMOGRAPHY. Retina 2018;38(1):173-182.Abstract
PURPOSE: To compare the choroidal thickness (CT) of diabetic eyes (different stages of disease) with controls, using swept-source optical coherence tomography. METHODS: A multicenter, prospective, cross-sectional study of diabetic and nondiabetic subjects using swept-source optical coherence tomography imaging. Choroidal thickness maps, according to the nine Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS) subfields, were obtained using automated software. Mean CT was calculated as the mean value within the ETDRS grid, and central CT as the mean in the central 1 mm. Diabetic eyes were divided into four groups: no diabetic retinopathy (No DR), nonproliferative DR (NPDR), NPDR with diabetic macular edema (NPDR + DME), and proliferative DR (PDR). Multilevel mixed linear models were performed for analyses. RESULTS: The authors included 50 control and 160 diabetic eyes (n = 27 No DR, n = 51 NPDR, n = 61 NPDR + DME, and n = 21 PDR). Mean CT (ß = -42.9, P = 0.022) and central CT (ß = -50.2, P = 0.013) were statistically significantly thinner in PDR eyes compared with controls, even after adjusting for confounding factors. Controlling for age, DR eyes presented a significantly decreased central CT than diabetic eyes without retinopathy (β = -36.2, P = 0.009). CONCLUSION: Swept-source optical coherence tomography demonstrates a significant reduction of CT in PDR compared with controls. In the foveal region, the choroid appears to be thinner in DR eyes than in diabetic eyes without retinopathy.
Yau GL, Silva PS, Arrigg PG, Sun JK. Postoperative Complications of Pars Plana Vitrectomy for Diabetic Retinal Disease. Semin Ophthalmol 2017;:1-8.Abstract
Despite recent advances in the medical management of diabetic retinal disease, there remain established indications for vitreoretinal surgery in the treatment of severe proliferative diabetic retinopathy. These include non-clearing vitreous hemorrhage and tractional retinal detachment. Advances in surgical instrumentation, technique, and experience have led to improved visual outcomes, as well as a corresponding decrease in the incidence of postoperative complications. However, the presence of systemic and ocular factors in diabetic patients increases the risk of adverse events compared to non-diabetic individuals. This review will focus on the most important postoperative complications following pars plana vitrectomy, with specific considerations for the diabetic patient.
Peterson SR, Silva PA, Murtha TJ, Sun JK. Cataract Surgery in Patients with Diabetes: Management Strategies. Semin Ophthalmol 2017;:1-8.Abstract
Diabetes is a chronic systemic disease that affects nearly one in eight adults worldwide. Ocular complications, such as cataract, can lead to significant visual impairment. Among the worldwide population, cataract is the leading cause of blindness, and patients with diabetes have an increased incidence of cataracts which mature earlier compared to the rest of the population. Cataract surgery is a common and safe procedure, but can be associated with vision-threatening complications in the diabetic population, such as diabetic macular edema, postoperative macular edema, diabetic retinopathy progression, and posterior capsular opacification. This article is a brief review of diabetic cataract and complications associated with cataract extraction in this population of patients.
Wang JC, Laíns I, Providência J, Armstrong GW, Santos AR, Gil P, Gil J, Talcott KE, Marques JH, Figueira J, Vavvas DG, Kim IK, Miller JW, Husain D, Silva R, Miller JB. Diabetic Choroidopathy: Choroidal Vascular Density and Volume in Diabetic Retinopathy With Swept-Source Optical Coherence Tomography. Am J Ophthalmol 2017;184:75-83.Abstract
PURPOSE: To compare choroidal vascular density (CVD) and volume (CVV) in diabetic eyes and controls, using en face swept-source optical coherence tomography (SS-OCT). DESIGN: Prospective cross-sectional study. METHODS: Setting: Multicenter. PATIENT POPULATION: Total of 143 diabetic eyes-27 with no diabetic retinopathy (DR), 47 with nonproliferative DR (NPDR), 51 with NPDR and diabetic macular edema (DME), and 18 with proliferative DR (PDR)-and 64 age-matched nondiabetic control eyes. OBSERVATION PROCEDURES: Complete ophthalmologic examination and SS-OCT imaging. En face SS-OCT images of the choroidal vasculature were binarized. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: CVD, calculated as the percent area occupied by choroidal vessels in the central macular region (6-mm-diameter circle centered on the fovea), and throughout the posterior pole (12 × 9 mm). The central macular CVV was calculated by multiplying the average CVD by macular area and choroidal thickness (obtained with SS-OCT automated software). Multilevel mixed linear models were performed for analyses. RESULTS: Compared to controls (0.31 ± 0.07), central macular CVD was significantly decreased by 9% in eyes with NPDR + DME (0.28 ± 0.06; ß = -0.03, P = .02) and by 15% in PDR (0.26 ± 0.05; ß = -0.04, P = .01). The central macular CVV was significantly decreased by 19% in eyes with PDR (0.020 ± 0.005 mm3, ß = -0.01, P = .01) compared to controls (0.025 ± 0.01 mm3). CONCLUSIONS: Choroidal vascular density and volume are significantly reduced in more advanced stages of diabetic retinopathy. New imaging modalities should allow further exploration of the contributions of choroidal vessel disease to diabetic eye disease pathogenesis, prognosis, and treatment response.
Sobrin L, Chong YH, Fan Q, Gan A, Stanwyck LK, Kaidonis G, Craig JE, Kim J, Liao W-L, Huang Y-C, Lee W-J, Hung Y-J, Guo X, Hai Y, Ipp E, Pollack S, Hancock H, Price A, Penman A, Mitchell P, Liew G, Smith AV, Gudnason V, Tan G, Klein BEK, Kuo J, Li X, Christiansen MW, Psaty BM, Sandow K, Sandow K, Jensen RA, Klein R, Cotch MF, Wang JJ, Jia Y, Chen CJ, Chen Y-DI, Rotter JI, Tsai F-J, Hanis CL, Burdon KP, Wong TY, Cheng C-Y. Genetically Determined Plasma Lipid Levels and Risk of Diabetic Retinopathy: A Mendelian Randomization Study. Diabetes 2017;66(12):3130-3141.Abstract
Results from observational studies examining dyslipidemia as a risk factor for diabetic retinopathy (DR) have been inconsistent. We evaluated the causal relationship between plasma lipids and DR using a Mendelian randomization approach. We pooled genome-wide association studies summary statistics from 18 studies for two DR phenotypes: any DR (N = 2,969 case and 4,096 control subjects) and severe DR (N = 1,277 case and 3,980 control subjects). Previously identified lipid-associated single nucleotide polymorphisms served as instrumental variables. Meta-analysis to combine the Mendelian randomization estimates from different cohorts was conducted. There was no statistically significant change in odds ratios of having any DR or severe DR for any of the lipid fractions in the primary analysis that used single nucleotide polymorphisms that did not have a pleiotropic effect on another lipid fraction. Similarly, there was no significant association in the Caucasian and Chinese subgroup analyses. This study did not show evidence of a causal role of the four lipid fractions on DR. However, the study had limited power to detect odds ratios less than 1.23 per SD in genetically induced increase in plasma lipid levels, thus we cannot exclude that causal relationships with more modest effect sizes exist.
Olivares AM, Althoff K, Chen GF, Wu S, Morrisson MA, Deangelis MM, Haider N. Animal Models of Diabetic Retinopathy. Curr Diab Rep 2017;17(10):93.Abstract
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is one of the most common complications associated with chronic hyperglycemia seen in patients with diabetes mellitus. While many facets of DR are still not fully understood, animal studies have contributed significantly to understanding the etiology and progression of human DR. This review provides a comprehensive discussion of the induced and genetic DR models in different species and the advantages and disadvantages of each model. RECENT FINDINGS: Rodents are the most commonly used models, though dogs develop the most similar morphological retinal lesions as those seen in humans, and pigs and zebrafish have similar vasculature and retinal structures to humans. Nonhuman primates can also develop diabetes mellitus spontaneously or have focal lesions induced to simulate retinal neovascular disease observed in individuals with DR. DR results in vascular changes and dysfunction of the neural, glial, and pancreatic β cells. Currently, no model completely recapitulates the full pathophysiology of neuronal and vascular changes that occur at each stage of diabetic retinopathy; however, each model recapitulates many of the disease phenotypes.
Machuca-Parra AI, Bigger-Allen AA, Sanchez AV, Boutabla A, Cardona-Vélez J, Amarnani D, Saint-Geniez M, Siebel CW, Kim LA, D'Amore PA, Arboleda-Velasquez JF. Therapeutic antibody targeting of Notch3 signaling prevents mural cell loss in CADASIL. J Exp Med 2017;214(8):2271-2282.Abstract
Cerebral autosomal-dominant arteriopathy with subcortical infarcts and leukoencephalopathy (CADASIL) is a neurological syndrome characterized by small vessel disease (SVD), stroke, and vascular cognitive impairment and dementia caused by mutations in NOTCH3 No therapies are available for this condition. Loss of mural cells, which encompass pericytes and vascular smooth muscle cells, is a hallmark of CADASIL and other SVDs, including diabetic retinopathy, resulting in vascular instability. Here, we showed that Notch3 signaling is both necessary and sufficient to support mural cell coverage in arteries using genetic rescue in Notch3 knockout mice. Furthermore, we show that systemic administration of an agonist Notch3 antibody prevents mural cell loss and modifies plasma proteins associated with Notch3 activity, including endostatin/collagen 18α1 and Notch3 extracellular domain in mice with the C455R mutation, a CADASIL variant associated with Notch3 loss of function. These findings open opportunities for the treatment of CADASIL and other SVDs by modulating Notch3 signaling.
Ung C, Sanchez AV, Shen L, Davoudi S, Ahmadi T, Navarro-Gomez D, Chen CJ, Hancock H, Penman A, Hoadley S, Consugar M, Restrepo C, Shah VA, Arboleda-Velasquez JF, Sobrin L, Gai X, Kim LA. Whole exome sequencing identification of novel candidate genes in patients with proliferative diabetic retinopathy. Vision Res 2017;Abstract
Rare or novel gene variants in patients with proliferative diabetic retinopathy may contribute to disease development. We performed whole exome sequencing (WES) on patients at the phenotypic extremes of diabetic retinal complications: 57 patients diagnosed with proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR) as cases and 13 patients with no diabetic retinopathy despite at least 10years of type 2 diabetes as controls. Thirty-one out of the 57 cases and all 13 controls were from the African American Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy Study (AA). The rest of the cases were of mixed ethnicities (ME). WES identified 721 candidate genes with rare or novel non-synonymous variants found in at least one case with PDR and not present in any controls. After filtering for genes with null alleles in greater than two cases, 28 candidate genes were identified in our ME cases and 16 genes were identified in our AA cases. Our analysis showed rare and novel variants within these genes that could contribute to the development of PDR, including rare non-synonymous variants in FAM132A, SLC5A9, ZNF600, and TMEM217. We also found previously unidentified variants in VEGFB and APOB. We found that VEGFB, VPS13B, PHF21A, NAT1, ZNF600, PKHD1L1 expression was reduced in human retinal endothelial cells (HRECs) cultured under high glucose conditions. In an exome sequence analysis of patients with PDR, we identified variants in genes that could contribute to pathogenesis. Six of these genes were further validated and found to have reduced expression in HRECs under high glucose conditions, suggestive of an important role in the development of PDR.

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