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  • Cornea/External Disease, Refractive Mgmt/Intervention

    This retrospective study found an association between the thrombospondin 1 (THBS1) gene and post-surgical inflammation and dry eye.

    The association between refractive surgery and dry eye syndrome is well known, but the extent to which genetic factors may contribute has not been adequately investigated. Subjects included 143 military personnel between the ages of 21 and 40 who underwent either LASIK or PRK and had one year of follow up.

    Dry eye patients were 2.83 times more likely to carry the SNP1 minor allele of the THBS1 gene. This gene was also correlated with a significant decrease in TSP1 expression in the conjunctival epithelium, along with a concomitant significant increase in the expression of IL-1β, an inflammatory marker associated with dry eye.

    Although this study investigated dry eye only in refractive surgery patients, it is nevertheless interesting to note the genetic predisposition to dry eye the authors discovered. The correlation between SNP1 minor allele of the THBS1 gene and dry eye disease was not perfect, indicating once again that dry eye truly is a multifactorial condition.