JAN 13, 2011
A lot of research has attempted to identify clinical risk factors for developing proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR), but these variables do not completely explain the probability of its onset. One of the main mediators of inflammation is tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα), a proinflammatory cytokine that belongs to a large family of proteins called the "TNF Ligand Superfamily." Synthesis of TNFα is increased in eyes with PVR, and TNFα normally regulates expression of survival factors that protect retinal pigment epithelial cells from apoptosis in diseases such as PVR. That's why this study's authors analyzed the potential role that the genotype profile of TNFα may have in the complex onset of PVR.
As part of The Retina 4 Project, they conducted a case-controlled, candidate gene association study of the TNFα locus with proliferative vitreoretinopathy using genotyped blood from 138 patients with post-rhegmatogenous retinal detachment. They found that a single nucleotide polymorphism in the lymphotoxin alpha gene - rs2229094 (T→C) - was found to have a strong association with proliferative vitreoretinopathy.
The authors conclude that if supported in extended studies, this polymorphism may have significant implications regarding the genetic risk of the retinal repairing process.