Welcome to the Ophthalmology Journal News page! This page will showcase the latest news from the world of Ophthalmology, as published by The British Journal of Ophthalmology (BMJ).
For the British Ophthalmology Journal Archives, please visit http://bjo.bmj.com/ .
These news items are mainly specific study results that are relevant to the layman.
We have also added another news page with more ‘general’ Opthalmogy news here: Opthamologist News.
Furthermore, we have added a page with general news articles about Eye Health here: Eye Problems Articles , which is a good read for both patients and Ophthalmologists alike.
Ophthalmology Journal News:
The potential association between primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) is uncertain and has implications for understanding disease pathogenesis, referral and treatments. The aim was to determine whether individuals diagnosed with POAG are at higher risk of subsequently developing AD or vascular dementia.
A POAG cohort of 87 658 people was constructed from English National Health Service linked hospital episode statistics from 1999 to 2011. An AD cohort (251 703 people), vascular dementia cohort (217 302 people) and reference cohort (>2.5 million people) were constructed in similar ways. Risk of dementia following POAG was determined: rate ratios were calculated based on standardised rates of dementia in the POAG cohort.
The risk of AD following a diagnosis of POAG was not elevated: the rate ratio was 1.01 (95% CI 0.96 to 1.06). The risk of vascular dementia after POAG was modestly elevated, with rate ratio 1.10 (1.05 to 1.16). The likelihood of a hospital record of POAG following AD or vascular dementia was very low, with rate ratios 0.28 (0.24 to 0.31) and 0.32 (0.28 to 0.37), respectively.
POAG and AD are neurodegenerative conditions that share some pathological features. However, considering AD after POAG, their coexistence at the individual level is no different from that expected by chance. By contrast, a diagnosis of POAG is modestly associated with later development of vascular dementia, presumably owing to shared vascular risk factors. People with dementia in England are much less likely to be admitted subsequently with POAG, perhaps through poor access to hospital eye services and diagnostic challenges.
Uveal melanoma (UM) is the most common malignant tumour of the eye. Diagnosis often occurs late in the course of disease, and prognosis is generally poor. Recently, recurrent somatic mutations were described, unravelling additional specific altered pathways in UM. Targeted next-generation sequencing (NGS) can now be applied to an accurate and fast identification of somatic mutations in cancer. The aim of the present study was to characterise the mutation pattern of five UM hepatic metastases with well-defined clinical and pathological features.
We analysed the UM mutation spectrum using targeted NGS on 409 cancer genes.
Four previous reported genes were found to be recurrently mutated. All tumours presented mutually exclusive GNA11 or GNAQ missense mutations. BAP1 loss-of-function mutations were found in three UMs. SF3B1 missense mutations were found in the two UMs with no BAP1 mutations. We then searched for additional mutation targets. We identified the Arg505Cys mutation in the tumour suppressor FBXW7. The same mutation was previously described in different cancer types, and FBXW7 was recently reported to be mutated in UM exomes.
Further studies are required to confirm FBXW7 implication in UM tumorigenesis. Elucidating the molecular mechanisms underlying UM tumorigenesis holds the promise for novel and effective targeted UM therapies.
A pathogenic role of Th17 cells in uveitis has become clear in recent years. Therefore, in the present study, we aimed to evaluate the possible influence of the IL17A locus on susceptibility to non-anterior uveitis and its main clinical subgroups.
Five IL17A polymorphisms (rs4711998, rs8193036, rs3819024, rs2275913 and rs7747909), selected by tagging, were genotyped using TaqMan assays in 353 Spanish patients with non-anterior uveitis and 1851 ethnically matched controls.
The case/control analysis yielded a consistent association between two of the analysed genetic variants, rs8193036 and rs2275913, and the presence of panuveitis under a dominant model (pFDR=2.86E-03, OR=2.26, 95% CI 1.42 to 3.59 and pFDR=0.033, OR=1.83, 95% CI 1.13 to 2.97, respectively). Subsequently, a specific association of both polymorphisms with the diffuse form of the disease was evident in the subphenotype analysis when considering this same genetic model (panuveitis vs posterior and intermediate uveitis: rs8193036, p=0.020; rs2275913, p=0.038). Independent effects of rs8193036 and rs2275913 were observed by conditional regression analysis.
Polymorphisms within the IL17A locus show a novel association with panuveitis. Our data agree with the elevated levels of this cytokine that are found in patients with uveitis, supporting a crucial role of Th17 cells in this pathology.
Our results clearly evidenced the role of IL17A as a novel genetic risk factor for panuveitis, thus suggesting the implication of Th17 cells in the extensive inflammation of the uveal tract that occurs in this subtype of uveitis.
Evidence of effectiveness of interventions for treatment of childhood intermittent exotropia, X(T), is unclear. We conducted a systematic review to locate, appraise and synthesise evidence of effectiveness, including twelve electronic databases, supplemented with hand searches and expert contact. We included randomised controlled trials, quasi-experimental and cohort studies with a comparison group examining interventions for divergence excess, simulated divergence excess or basic type X(T) in children, up to and including 18 years of age, followed for at least 6 months. Dual data extraction and critical appraisal were conducted and a narrative synthesis undertaken. Eleven studies satisfied the eligibility criteria. Seven examined the comparative effectiveness of two surgical procedures; four compared surgery with other interventions, including botulinum toxin A therapy, orthoptic exercises, occlusion, binocular vision training and watchful waiting. The evidence retrieved was of limited extent and quality with differences across studies in terms of outcome assessment and most appropriate time-point for measuring long-term outcomes. There were mixed outcomes when comparing unilateral recession/resection (R&R) with bilateral lateral rectus recession (BLR) on improving angle of deviation, which makes it difficult to recommend either surgical option with confidence. While non-surgical interventions appear less effective in terms of improving angle of deviation, they are rarely associated with adverse outcomes. Given the limited evidence base, better designed studies are required to address the question of the most effective management for treatment of childhood X(T). Importantly, consensus is required on what constitutes a successful outcome as well as agreement on how this should be measured.
To examine the relationship between the two UK vision standards for driving: the ability to read a number-plate at 20 m and achieving 6/12 (+0.30 logMAR).
120 participants were assessed without refractive correction in this cross-sectional study. Vision was assessed with a Snellen chart, Early Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS) style logMAR letter chart and logMAR chart using Landolt rings. Ability to read a post-2001 number-plate was assessed outdoors.
For all charts, there was an ‘overlap zone’ of visions within which it was uncertain whether participants would pass the number-plate test. Within this zone, sensitivity and specificity of the 6/12 cut-off for predicting number-plate performance were reasonable for Snellen and ETDRS style charts, but poor for Landolt. All participants with 6/7.5 Snellen (+0.10 logMAR ETDRS) or better could read a number-plate. Some participants (2–6%) with vision between this level and 6/12 could not read a number-plate, and 14%–15% could read a number-plate but not achieve 6/12.
To best predict drivers’ ability to read a number-plate, vision should be assessed using a logMAR letter chart or a Snellen chart scored by full line. Drivers with 6/7.5 (+0.10 logMAR) or better vision can be advised that they meet the driving standard. Drivers with acuity between 6/9 and 6/12 (+0.12—+0.30 logMAR) should be advised to check their ability to read a number-plate, as some may not be able to. Clinicians will see patients who can read a number-plate, but do not achieve 6/12, who will need improved vision to meet visual requirements for driving.
To determine whether CD163, a specific marker for M2 macrophages, is involved in the formation of preretinal fibrovascular membranes (FVMs) present in eyes with proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR).
We measured the levels of soluble (s)CD163, periostin and vascular endothelial growth factor by sandwich ELISA in vitreous samples from 74 eyes of 62 patients with PDR, 20 eyes of 18 patients with proliferative vitreoretinopathy, and 56 eyes of 54 patients with non-diabetic ocular diseases (control group). Immunohistochemical analyses were performed to determine the expressions of CD68, CD163 and periostin in the surgically resected FVMs and idiopathic epiretinal membranes (ERMs).
The concentrations of sCD163 and periostin in the vitreous were significantly higher in patients with PDR than in non-diabetic controls (p<0.0001). There was a strong correlation between the vitreous concentrations of sCD163 and periostin. The mean vitreous level of sCD163 was significantly higher in eyes with FVMs than in those without FVMs (epicentre only). The number and percentage of CD163+ macrophages were significantly higher in the FVMs than in the idiopathic ERMs. Immunohistochemical analysis showed co-localisation of CD163 and periostin in FVM cells.
These findings indicate that the overexpression of CD163 by macrophages may be involved in the development of FVMs partly through periostin production.
To study the demographics, comorbidities, clinical manifestations and treatment methods of thyroid eye disease (TED) in Singapore.
In this retrospective case series, we analysed the case records of all patients with TED who presented at our multidisciplinary Thyroid Eye Clinic from November 2002 to October 2012.
There were a total of 174 patients—111 female patients (63.8%) and 63 male patients (36.2%). The majority of the patients were ethnically Chinese (80.5%), followed by Malay (10.3%) and Indian (6.3%). The mean age was 40.2 years (SD±15.5, range 0.3–87.0). The commonest sign on ophthalmic examination was eyelid retraction (62.1%), followed by proptosis (61.0%) and lid lag (57.5). Acquired epiblepharon and corneal erosions were noted in 11.5% and 29.3% respectively. Eight patients (4.6%) had dysthyroid optic neuropathy. The mean exophthalmometry reading was 18.8 mm (SD±3.32, range 10.0–28.0). Mild, moderate and severe disease was noted in 71.3%, 20.7% and 8.0% respectively.
Thyroid dysfunction was managed with anti-thyroid medication only (40.2%), β blockers (19.5%), thyroxine replacement (14.4%), radioactive iodine (14.4%) and block-replace regime (9.8%). Clinically significant active orbitopathy was managed with intravenous corticosteroids (12.1%). Surgical procedures consisted of thyroidectomy (10.3%), eyelid surgery (8.6%), orbital decompression (7.5%), epiblepharon correction (2.3%) and strabismus surgery (0.6%).
Corneal erosion secondary to acquired epiblepharon is a common sign in East Asian patients with TED, thus increased awareness among physicians should be encouraged. Mean exophthalmometry values and frequencies of upper eyelid retraction and oedema are lower in East Asian patients compared with Caucasian patients. Among Singapore's multi-ethnic population, Malay patients with TED had the highest exophthalmometry reading.
CDC25 proteins play a pivotal role in controlling cell proliferation during development and tumorigenesis. The aim of the study is to elucidate the role of CDC25A and CDC25B proteins in retinoblastoma and their association with the clinical and histopathological parameters.
One hundred and nine prospective cases of primary enucleated retinoblastomas were included in the present study. Expression of CDC25A and CDC25B proteins was investigated by immunohistochemistry, western blotting and mRNA expression by reverse-transcriptase PCR.
Immunohistochemistry showed CDC25A expression in (57/109) 52.29%, whereas CDC25B expressed in (69/109) 63.30% cases. Western blotting confirmed the immunoreactivity results on representative cases. mRNA expression of CDC25A and CDC25B was found in 29/60 (48.33%) and 35/60 (58.33%) cases, respectively. Expression of CDC25A and CDC25B showed significant correlation with poor tumour differentiation and tumour invasion (p<0.05). There was a statistically significant difference in the overall survival of patients with CDC25B expression (p=0.0270).
Our results suggest that expression of CDC25B may be used as a potential prognostic marker in the pathogenesis of retinoblastoma. These findings demonstrate an important role of CDC25 phosphatase proteins and inhibition of these proteins may have therapeutic potential in retinoblastoma.
To validate the accuracy and repeatability of a mobile app reading speed test compared with the traditional paper version.
Twenty-one subjects wearing their full refractive correction glasses read 14 sentences of decreasing print size between 1.0 and –0.1 logMAR, each consisting of 14 words (Radner reading speed test) at 40 cm with a paper-based chart and twice on iPad charts. Time duration was recorded with a stop watch for the paper chart and on the App itself for the mobile chart allowing critical print size (CPS) and optimal reading speed (ORS) to be derived objectively.
The ORS was higher for the mobile app charts (194±29 wpm; 195±25 wpm) compared with the paper chart (166±20 wpm; F=57.000, p<0.001). The CPS was lower for the mobile app charts (0.17±0.20 logMAR; 0.18±0.17 logMAR) compared with the paper chart (0.25±0.17 logMAR; F=5.406, p=0.009). The mobile app test had a mean difference repeatability of 0.30±22.5 wpm, r=0.917 for ORS, and a CPS of 0.0±0.2 logMAR, r=0.769.
Repeatability of the app reading speed test is as good (ORS) or better (CPS) than previous studies on the paper test. While the results are not interchangeable with paper-based charts, mobile app tablet-based tests of reading speed are reliable and rapid to perform, with the potential to capture functional visual ability in research studies and clinical practice.
To assess the efficacy of securing conjunctival autograft (CAG) without glue or sutures, using the patient's own blood at the surgical site, and to compare it with the current accepted standard of using fibrin glue for graft adherence, in pterygium surgery.
A single-centre, prospective, randomised controlled trial was carried out in 200 eyes of patients with primary pterygia who were advised pterygium excision with CAG. Enrolled participants were assigned to Group I or II by randomisation. After excision of pterygium, they underwent CAG with autologous blood in Group I (100 eyes) and CAG with fibrin glue in Group II (100 eyes). During follow-up of 1 year, the eyes were assessed for graft adherence and recurrence.
Of the 200 eyes randomised, 6 eyes that did not complete intended follow-up were excluded from final analysis. Of the 194 eyes (Group I n=96, Group II n=98), on the first postoperative day, 3 eyes in Group I (3.13%) had total graft dislodgement requiring regrafting from another site or reattachment with glue. In Group II also 2 eyes (2.04%) had graft dislodgement on the first postoperative day requiring regrafting from another site. During the 1-year follow-up, 6 eyes in Group I (6.25%) and 8 eyes in Group II (8.16%) developed recurrence.
Feasibilty of adherence of the graft without glue in pterygium surgery is promising and has results comparable with the fibrin glue technique in terms of long-term outcome and recurrence, suggesting the potential for autologous blood to replace fibrin glue in graft fixation.
Clinical Trial Registry, India: CTRI/2013/06/003764 and UTN: U1111-1140-6572.
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