To study the involvement of eight angiogenic growth factors that have been identified so far in the literature, especially vascular endothelial growth factor, in proliferative diabetic retinopathy.
Samples of neovascular membranes were obtained from diabetic patients; these samples, excised at vitrectomy, were used to study the expression of messenger RNA of the angiogenic factors by using the method of the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Vitreous aspirates that were taken from diabetic and control patients were used to quantify vascular endothelial growth factor-like activity with a competitive radioreceptor assay.
Of the eight angiogenic factors studied, vascular endothelial growth factor was the only one that was always expressed in the samples of neovascular membranes. Furthermore, vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-binding activity was greater in vitreous aspirates that were obtained from diabetic patients than in samples that were taken from control patients (P<.01).
Vascular endothelial growth factor seems to be an appropriate candidate for mediating retinal diabetic neovascularization.
Malecaze F, Clamens S, Simorre-Pinatel V, et al. Detection of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Messenger RNA and Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor-like Activity in Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy. Arch Ophthalmol. 1994;112(11):1476–1482. doi:10.1001/archopht.1994.01090230090028
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