Coleman AL, Lum FC, Velentgas P, Su Z, Gliklich RE, Gliklich RE. Impact of treatment strategies for open angle glaucoma on intraocular pressure: the RiGOR study. J Comp Eff Res 2016;5(1):87-98.Abstract

AIMS: The RiGOR study's primary outcome measure was a 15% reduction in intraocular pressure (IOP) for patients with open-angle glaucoma at 1 year. METHODS: Patients received treatment according to the ophthalmologist's usual practice. RESULTS: A higher proportion of patients in the incisional and other surgery group achieved a 15% reduction in IOP than in the laser surgery or additional medication groups (82, 57, and 57% respectively). In multivariate regression analyses, incisional surgery patients were 2.7-times as likely as patients treated with additional medication to achieve a 15% reduction in IOP (odds ratio: 2.67; 95% CI: 2.01-3.57). CONCLUSION: Incisional and other surgical procedures are effective treatments. There were no differences in treatment response by race or ethnicity.

Coleman AL, Lum FC, Velentgas P, Campion D, Su Z, Gliklich RE, Gliklich RE. RiGOR: a prospective observational study comparing the effectiveness of treatment strategies for open-angle glaucoma. J Comp Eff Res 2016;5(1):65-78.Abstract

AIMS: The RigOR study was designed to assess comparative effectiveness of medications, laser trabeculoplasty and incisional surgery in patients with open-angle glaucoma (OAG) in the community initiating a new or additional course of therapy as judged necessary by their ophthalmologist. This paper focuses specifically on demographic and clinical characteristics of OAG patients at enrollment. PATIENTS & METHODS: A total of 2597 with OAG already on medical therapy were enrolled from 45 community and academic practices throughout the USA. RESULTS: Overall, 784 (30%) patients were treated with laser surgery, 436 with other surgical procedures (17%), and 1377 with additional medication (53%). Patients had mild (35%) or moderate (31%) glaucoma, with 28% with severe glaucoma. CONCLUSION: The RiGOR study enrolled a diverse population and will provide valuable information regarding visual function and treatment patterns among different racial/ethnic populations. African-American and Hispanic patients entered the study with poorer visual acuity and more severe glaucoma.

Pasquale LR, Borrás T, Fingert JH, Wiggs JL, Ritch R. Exfoliation syndrome: assembling the puzzle pieces. Acta Ophthalmol 2016;94(6):e505-12.Abstract

PURPOSE: To summarize various topics and the cutting edge approaches to refine XFS pathogenesis that were discussed at the 21st annual Glaucoma Foundation Think Tank meeting in New York City, Sept. 19-20, 2014. METHODS: The highlights of three categories of talks on cutting edge research in the field were summarized. RESULTS: Exfoliation syndrome (XFS) is a systemic disorder with a substantial ocular burden, including high rates of cataract, cataract surgery complications, glaucoma and retinal vein occlusion. New information about XFS is akin to puzzle pieces that do not quite join together to reveal a clear picture regarding how exfoliation material (XFM) forms. CONCLUSION: Meeting participants concluded that it is unclear how the mild homocysteinemia seen in XFS might contribute to the disarrayed extracellular aggregates characteristic of this syndrome. Lysyl oxidase-like 1 (LOXL1) variants are unequivocally genetic risk factors for XFS but exactly how these variants contribute to the assembly of exfoliation material (XFM) remains unclear. Variants in a new genomic region, CACNA1A associated with XFS, may alter calcium concentrations at the cell surface and facilitate XFM formation but much more work is needed before we can place this new finding in proper context. It is hoped that various animal model and ex vivo systems will emerge that will allow for proper assembly of the puzzle pieces into a coherent picture of XFS pathogenesis. A clear understanding of XFS pathogenesis may lead to 'upstream solutions' to reduce the ocular morbidity produced by XFS.

Murphy RM, Bakir B, O'Brien C, Wiggs JL, Pasquale LR. Drug-induced Bilateral Secondary Angle-Closure Glaucoma: A Literature Synthesis. J Glaucoma 2016;25(2):e99-e105.Abstract

PURPOSE: We performed a literature synthesis to identify the full spectrum of compounds implicated in drug-induced, bilateral secondary angle-closure glaucoma (2° ACG). METHODS: Systematic PubMed literature review identified relevant bilateral 2° ACG case reports. We evaluated these reports with both the Naranjo adverse drug reaction probability scale to assess the causality of reported drug reactions and a 2° ACG scale scoring system we developed to determine the likelihood that the event represented bilateral 2° ACG. Two independent graders performed these analyses and their scores were averaged for interpretation. The Naranjo scale ranges from -4 to +13 and the drug reaction was considered definite if the score was ≥9, probable if 5 to 8, possible if 1 to 4, and doubtful if ≤0. The 2° ACG score ranges from 0 to 7. We considered a 2° ACG score of ≥4 as evidence of significant likelihood that the drug reaction represented bilateral 2° ACG. RESULTS: No drug had a definite Naranjo score, but the following drug entities had probable Naranjo scores and 2° ACG scores ≥4: acetazolamide, "anorexiant mix," bupropion, cabergoline, "ecstasy," escitalopram, flavoxate, flucloxacillin, hydrochlorothiazide, hydrochlorothiazide/triamterene, mefenamic acid, methazolamide, oseltamivir, topiramate, topiramate/bactrim, and venlafaxine. Root chemical analysis revealed that sulfur-containing and non-sulfur-containing compounds contributed to bilateral 2° ACG. CONCLUSIONS: Several compound preparations were implicated in drug-induced bilateral 2° ACG. Treating physicians should be aware that some forms of recreational drug use, which the patient may not admit to, could contribute to this vision-threatening side effect.

Taibbi G, Kim JD, Bakir BH, Shenoy SR, Pearce WA, Taroyan G, Birdsong OC, Loucks EK, Vizzeri G. Correlation and Agreement Between Cirrus HD-OCT "RNFL Thickness Map" and Scan Circle Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer Thickness Measurements. J Glaucoma 2016;25(2):208-16.Abstract

PURPOSE: To evaluate the correlation and agreement between optical coherence tomography (Cirrus HD-OCT) retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness map and scan circle RNFL thickness measurements. METHODS: ImageJ and custom Perl scripts were used to derive RNFL thickness measurements from RNFL thickness maps of optic disc scans of healthy and glaucomatous eyes. Average, quadrant, and clock-hour RNFL thickness of the map, and RNFL thickness of the areas inside/outside the scan circle were obtained. Correlation and agreement between RNFL thickness map and scan circle RNFL thickness measurements were evaluated using R and Bland-Altman plots, respectively. RESULTS: A total of 104 scans from 26 healthy eyes and 120 scans from 30 glaucomatous eyes were analyzed. RNFL thickness map and scan circle measurements were highly reproducible (eg, in healthy eyes, average RNFL thickness coefficients of variation were 2.14% and 2.52% for RNFL thickness map and scan circle, respectively) and highly correlated (0.55≤R≤0.98). In general, the scan circle provided greater RNFL thickness than the RNFL thickness map in corresponding sectors and the differences tended to increase as RNFL thickness increased. The width of the 95% limits of agreement ranged between 5.28 and 36.80 μm in healthy eyes, and between 11.69 and 42.89 μm in glaucomatous eyes. CONCLUSIONS: Despite good correlation between RNFL thickness map and scan circle measurements, agreement was generally poor, suggesting that RNFL thickness assessment over the entire scan area may provide additional clinically relevant information to the conventional scan circle analysis. In the absence of available measurements from the entire peripapillary region, the RNFL thickness maps can be used to investigate localized RNFL thinning in areas not intercepted by the scan circle.

Berry RH, Qu J, John SWM, Howell GR, Jakobs TC. Synapse Loss and Dendrite Remodeling in a Mouse Model of Glaucoma. PLoS One 2015;10(12):e0144341.Abstract

It has been hypothesized that synaptic pruning precedes retinal ganglion cell degeneration in glaucoma, causing early dysfunction to retinal ganglion cells. To begin to assess this, we studied the excitatory synaptic inputs to individual ganglion cells in normal mouse retinas and in retinas with ganglion cell degeneration from glaucoma (DBA/2J), or following an optic nerve crush. Excitatory synapses were labeled by AAV2-mediated transfection of ganglion cells with PSD-95-GFP. After both insults the linear density of synaptic inputs to ganglion cells decreased. In parallel, the dendritic arbors lost complexity. We did not observe any cells that had lost dendritic synaptic input while preserving a normal or near-normal morphology. Within the temporal limits of these observations, dendritic remodeling and synapse pruning thus appear to occur near-simultaneously.

Pasquale LR, Hanyuda A, Ren A, Giovingo M, Greenstein SH, Cousins C, Patrianakos T, Tanna AP, Wanderling C, Norkett W, Wiggs JL, Green K, Kang JH, Knepper PA. Nailfold Capillary Abnormalities in Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma: A Multisite Study. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2015;56(12):7021-8.Abstract

PURPOSE: There is considerable evidence for systemic vascular dysfunction in primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG). We performed nailfold capillary video microscopy to observe directly the nature of nonocular microvasculature abnormalities in POAG. METHODS: We enrolled 199 POAG patients and 124 control subjects from four sites. We used JH-1004 capillaroscopes to perform nailfold capillary video microscopy on the fourth and fifth digits of each subject's nondominant hand. Videos were evaluated for hemorrhages, dilated capillary loops > 50 μm, and avascular zones > 100 μm by graders masked to case status. Multivariable odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for POAG were obtained by means of logistic regression analyses that were applied to data from all cases and controls. Corresponding estimates of moderate or severe POAG versus mild POAG (based on the Hodapp-Anderson-Parrish scale) were obtained among cases only. RESULTS: After controlling for demographic factors, family history of glaucoma, systemic diseases, and use of anticoagulation and antiplatelet therapy, for each 100 nailfold capillaries assessed, all types of microvascular abnormalities were significantly associated with POAG. Specifically, the presence of any dilated capillaries (OR = 2.9; 95% CI, 1.6-5.6), avascular zones (OR = 4.4; 95% CI, 1.7-11.3) and hemorrhages (OR = 12.2; 95% CI, 5.9-25.1) were associated with POAG. Among cases, the frequency of microvascular abnormalities was not associated with glaucoma severity (P ≥ 0.43). CONCLUSIONS: These data provided support for nonocular capillary bed abnormalities in POAG. Comparable vascular abnormalities in the optic nerve may render it susceptible to glaucomatous damage.

Fan BJ, Pasquale LR, Kang JH, Levkovitch-Verbin H, Haines JL, Wiggs JL. Association of clusterin (CLU) variants and exfoliation syndrome: An analysis in two Caucasian studies and a meta-analysis. Exp Eye Res 2015;139:115-22.Abstract

Exfoliation syndrome (XFS) is an important risk factor for glaucoma (XFG) worldwide. LOXL1 variants are highly associated with XFS in most populations; however, the high frequency of risk alleles in normal individuals and the reversal of risk alleles in different ethnic populations suggest that other factors contribute to XFS pathogenesis. Clusterin (CLU) is an extracellular matrix chaperone that prevents protein aggregation and is highly expressed in ocular tissues affected by XFS. Studies examining common CLU variants for association with XFS have been inconsistent. The purpose of this study was to evaluate CLU variants for association with XFS in two independent datasets from the United States (222 cases and 344 controls) and Israel (92 cases and 102 controls). Seven tag SNPs that captured >95% of alleles at r(2) greater than 0.8 across the CLU genomic region were genotyped using TaqMan assays. Genotypes for an additional SNP, rs2279590, were imputed using phased haplotypes of HapMap reference CEU samples. Of the 8 CLU SNPs selected for the study, none were significantly associated with XFS in either case-control group (age and sex adjusted P > 0.14 and 0.36, respectively, in the US and Israeli datasets), or when they were meta-analyzed together (age and sex adjusted P > 0.13). Haplotype analysis using all 8 SNPs or only the promoter region SNPs also did not show significant associations of CLU with XFS in the combined US and Israeli dataset (P > 0.28). Meta-analysis of the data from this study and previous studies in Caucasian populations (1184 cases and 978 controls) resulted in statistically significant association of rs2279590 with XFS (summary OR = 1.18, 95% CI: 1.03-1.33, P = 0.01). Significant association between rs2279590 and XFS was also found in Indian populations (summary OR = 0.76, 95% CI: 0.61-0.96; P = 0.02); however, significant heterogeneity between the Caucasian and Indian populations possibly due to reversal of the risk allele precluded an overall meta-analysis for rs2279590 (Q = 0.001, I(2) = 91%). No significant association was identified for rs3087554 in either Caucasian populations (summary OR = 0.90, 95% CI: 0.77-1.05, P = 0.17) or Indian populations (summary OR = 0.89, 95% CI: 0.72-1.10, P = 0.28), or in both populations combined (1705 cases and 3713 controls; summary OR = 0.90, 95% CI: 0.79-1.01, P = 0.08). Significant heterogeneity precluded the addition of the Japanese data to the meta-analysis for rs3087554 (Q = 0.006, I(2) = 87%). Our results suggest that common CLU variants may contribute to modest XFS risk but even larger datasets are required to confirm these findings.

Turalba A, Payal AR, Gonzalez-Gonzalez LA, Cakiner-Egilmez T, Chomsky AS, Vollman DE, Baze EF, Lawrence M, Daly MK. Cataract Surgery Outcomes in Glaucomatous Eyes: Results From the Veterans Affairs Ophthalmic Surgery Outcomes Data Project. Am J Ophthalmol 2015;160(4):693-701.e1.Abstract

PURPOSE: To compare visual acuity outcomes, vision-related quality of life, and complications related to cataract surgery in eyes with and without glaucoma. DESIGN: Retrospective cohort study. METHODS: Cataract surgery outcomes in cases with and without glaucoma from the Veterans Affairs Ophthalmic Surgical Outcomes Data Project were compared. RESULTS: We identified 608 glaucoma cases and 4306 controls undergoing planned cataract surgery alone. After adjusting for age, pseudoexfoliation, small pupil, prior ocular surgery, and anterior chamber depth, we found that glaucoma cases were more likely to have posterior capsular tear with vitrectomy (odds ratio [OR] 1.8, P = .03) and sulcus intraocular lens placement (OR 1.65, P = .03) during cataract surgery. Glaucoma cases were more likely to have postoperative inflammation (OR 1.73, P < .0001), prolonged elevated intraocular pressure (OR 2.96, P = .0003), and additional surgery within 30 days (OR 1.92, P = .03). Mean best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) and Visual Function Questionnaire (VFQ) scores significantly improved after cataract surgery in both groups (P < .0001), but there were larger improvements in BCVA (P = .01) and VFQ composite scores (P < .0001) in the nonglaucoma vs the glaucoma group. A total of 3621 nonglaucoma cases (94.1%) had postoperative BCVA 20/40 or better, compared to 466 glaucoma cases (89.6%) (P = .0003). CONCLUSIONS: Eyes with glaucoma are at increased risk for complications and have more modest visual outcomes after cataract surgery compared to eyes without glaucoma. Despite this, glaucoma patients still experience significant improvement in vision-related outcomes after cataract extraction. Further study is needed to explore potential factors that influence cataract surgery outcomes in glaucomatous eyes.

Choi HJ, Sun D, Jakobs TC. Astrocytes in the optic nerve head express putative mechanosensitive channels. Mol Vis 2015;21:749-66.Abstract

PURPOSE: To establish whether optic nerve head astrocytes express candidate molecules to sense tissue stretch. METHODS: We used conventional PCR, quantitative PCR, and single-cell reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR) to assess the expression of various members of the transient receptor potential (TRP) channel family and of the recently characterized mechanosensitive channels Piezo1 and 2 in optic nerve head tissue and in single, isolated astrocytes. RESULTS: Most TRP subfamilies (TRPC, TRPM, TRPV, TRPA, and TRPP) and Piezo1 and 2 were expressed in the optic nerve head of the mouse. Quantitative real-time PCR analysis showed that TRPC1, TRPM7, TRPV2, TRPP2, and Piezo1 are the dominant isoforms in each subfamily. Single-cell RT-PCR revealed that many TRP isoforms, TRPC1-2, TRPC6, TRPV2, TRPV4, TRPM2, TRPM4, TRPM6-7, TRPP1-2, and Piezo1-2, are expressed in astrocytes of the optic nerve head, and that most astrocytes express TRPC1 and TRPP1-2. Comparisons of the TRPP and Piezo expression levels between different tissue regions showed that Piezo2 expression was higher in the optic nerve head and the optic nerve proper than in the brain and the corpus callosum. TRPP2 also showed higher expression in the optic nerve head. CONCLUSIONS: Astrocytes in the optic nerve head express multiple putative mechanosensitive channels, in particular the recently identified channels Piezo1 and 2. The expression of putative mechanosensitive channels in these cells may contribute to their responsiveness to traumatic or glaucomatous injury.

Zhao J, Zhu T, Chen W, Fan BJ, He L, Yang B, Deng Z. Human Leukocyte Antigens-B and -C Loci Associated with Posner-Schlossman Syndrome in a Southern Chinese Population. PLoS One 2015;10(7):e0132179.Abstract

The etiology of Posner-Schlossman syndrome (PSS) remains unknown. The association of human leukocyte antigens (HLA) allelic diversity with PSS has been poorly investigated. To evaluate the association of allelic polymorphisms of class I HLA-A, -B and -C and class II HLA-DRB1 and -DQB1 with PSS, 100 unrelated patients with PSS and 128 age- and ethnically matched control subjects were recruited from a southern Chinese Han population. Polymorphisms in exons 2-4 for HLA-A, -B, -C loci, exon 2 for HLA-DRB1 and exons 2,3 for HLA-DQB1 were analyzed for association with PSS at allele and haplotype levels. The allele frequency of HLA-C*1402 in PSS patients was significantly higher than that in controls (P = 0.002, OR = 4.12). This association survived the Bonferroni correction (Pc = 0.04). The allele frequency of HLA-B*1301 in PSS patients was lower than that in the control group (P = 0.003, OR = 0.21), although this association did not survive the Bonferroni correction (Pc = 0.16). In PSS patients, the haplotype frequencies of HLA-A*1101~C*1402 and B*5101~C*1402 were higher than that in controls (P = 0.03, OR = 4.44; P = 0.02, OR = 3.20; respectively), while the HLA-B*1301~C*0304 was lower than that in controls (P = 0.007, OR = 0.23), although these associations did not survive the Bonferroni correction (Pc > 0.16). This study for the first time demonstrated that polymorphisms at the HLA-B and HLA-C loci were nominally associated with PSS in the southern Chinese Han population. Our results suggest that HLA-C*1402, A*1101~C*1402 and B*5101~C*1402 might be risk factors for PSS, whereas HLA-B*1301 plus B*1301~C*0304 might be protective factors against PSS, but even larger datasets are required to confirm these findings. Findings from this study provide valuable new clues for investigating the mechanisms and development of new diagnosis and treatment for PSS.

Shen LQ, Kloek CE, Turalba AV. Assessing the Effect of a Glaucoma Surgical Curriculum in Resident Physicians. JAMA Ophthalmol 2015;133(9):1077-80.Abstract

IMPORTANCE: Subspecialty surgical training is an important part of resident education. We changed the glaucoma rotation in which postgraduate year 4 residents worked with multiple attending physicians with varying teaching styles to a structured surgical curriculum led by 2 dedicated preceptors, and we evaluated the effect on residents' surgical performance prospectively. OBSERVATIONS: A curriculum consisting of preoperative training, intraoperative teaching, postoperative feedback, and repetition was implemented for postgraduate year 4 residents between July 2, 2012, and June 30, 2014. In a class of 8 residents per year, the mean (SD) glaucoma surgical volume increased from 8.9 (0.8) cases in the prior year to 13.6 (2.5) in 2013 (mean difference, 4.8 cases; 95% CI, 2.4-7.1; P = .001) and 14.8 (4.2) in 2014 (mean difference, 5.9 cases; 95% CI, 2.1-9.6; P = .007). A self-assessment survey showed improvement in suturing (scores for each section range from 1 [worst] to 5 [best]; mean rating, 3.9 in the prior year vs 4.4 in 2013 [P = .04] and 4.5 in 2014 [P = .02]). A validated survey assessing overall surgical competency revealed improvement in handling adverse events (mean rating, 4.1 in the prior year vs 5.0 for both 2013 and 2014; both P < .001). CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Despite the small sample size and nonrandomized study design, these data suggest that a structured surgical curriculum has advantages in teaching subspecialty surgery and might be considered by other ophthalmology training programs.

Choi HJ, Sun D, Jakobs TC. Isolation of intact astrocytes from the optic nerve head of adult mice. Exp Eye Res 2015;137:103-10.Abstract

The astrocytes of the optic nerve head are a specialized subtype of white matter astrocytes that form the direct cellular environment of the unmyelinated ganglion cell axons. Due to their potential involvement in glaucoma, these astrocytes have become a target of research. Due to the heterogeneity of the optic nerve tissue, which also contains other cell types, in some cases it may be desirable to conduct gene expression studies on small numbers of well-characterized astrocytes or even individual cells. Here, we describe a simple method to isolate individual astrocytes. This method permits obtaining astrocytes with intact morphology from the adult mouse optic nerve and reduces contamination of the isolated astrocytes by other cell types. Individual astrocytes can be recognized by their morphology and collected under microscopic control. The whole procedure can be completed in 2-3 h. We also discuss downstream applications like multiplex single-cell PCR and quantitative PCR (qPCR).