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PURPOSE - The purpose of this study was to report a case of optic disc cupping reversal in an adult without significant intraocular pressure-lowering treatment.
PATIENT - A 20-year-old female with a history of mild juvenile open-angle glaucoma who developed subjective blurred vision and a decrease in cupping of her optic discs.
RESULTS - Dilated examination demonstrated decreased cup-to-disc ratios in both eyes with a slight blurring of the disc margin in the right eye. The appearance of both optic discs returned to baseline after weight loss therapy.
CONCLUSIONS - An unexplained reduction of optic nerve cup-to-disc ratio should prompt a workup for other etiologies, such as increased intracranial pressure. Baseline photographs not subjected to computerized scan obsolescence are extremely useful in monitoring the long-term appearance of asymmetric optic discs as an adjunct to the clinical examination.
PURPOSE - To compare intraocular pressure (IOP) after trabectome-mediated ab interno trabeculectomy surgery in phakic patients (T) and trabectome with same session phacoemulsification (PT) using Coarsened Exact Matching. Although phacoemulsification is associated with IOP reduction when performed on its own, it is not known how much it contributes in PT.
METHODS - Subjects were divided into phakic T and PT. Exclusion criteria were follow-up for <12 months and additional glaucoma surgery. Demographics were compared by the Mann-Whitney U test and chi-squared test for continuous and categorical variables, respectively. Multiple imputation was utilized to avoid eliminating data with missing values. Groups were then matched using Coarsened Exact Matching based on age, race, type of glaucoma, baseline IOP, and number of preoperative glaucoma medications. Univariate linear regression was used to examine IOP reduction after surgery; those variables that were statistically significant were included in the final multivariate regression model.
RESULTS - A total of 753 cases were included (T: 255, PT: 498). When all variables except for age were kept constant, there was an additional IOP reduction of 0.05±0.01 mmHg conferred for every yearly increment in age. Every 1 mmHg increase in baseline IOP correlated to an additional IOP reduction of 0.80±0.02 mmHg. Phacoemulsification was not found to be a statistically significant contributor to IOP when comparing T and PT (p≥0.05). T had a 21% IOP reduction to 15.9±3.5 mmHg (p<0.01) while PT had an 18% reduction to 15.5±3.6 mmHg (p<0.01). Number of medications decreased (p<0.01) in both groups from 2.4±1.2 to 1.9±1.3 and from 2.3±1.1 to 1.7±1.3, respectively.
CONCLUSION - Phacoemulsification does not make a significant contribution to postoperative IOP or number of medications when combined with trabectome surgery in phakic patients.
Glaucoma challenges the survival of retinal ganglion cell axons in the optic nerve through processes dependent on both aging and ocular pressure. Relevant stressors likely include complex interplay between axons and astrocytes, both in the retina and optic nerve. In the DBA/2J mouse model of pigmentary glaucoma, early progression involves axonopathy characterized by loss of functional transport prior to outright degeneration. Here we describe novel features of early pathogenesis in the DBA/2J nerve. With age the cross-sectional area of the nerve increases; this is associated generally with diminished axon packing density and survival and increased glial coverage of the nerve. However, for nerves with the highest axon density, as the nerve expands mean cross-sectional axon area enlarges as well. This early expansion was marked by disorganized axoplasm and accumulation of hyperphosphorylated neurofilamants indicative of axonopathy. Axon expansion occurs without loss up to a critical threshold for size (about 0.45-0.50 μm(2)), above which additional expansion tightly correlates with frank loss of axons. As well, early axon expansion prior to degeneration is concurrent with decreased astrocyte ramification with redistribution of processes towards the nerve edge. As axons expand beyond the critical threshold for loss, glial area resumes an even distribution from the center to edge of the nerve. We also found that early axon expansion is accompanied by reduced numbers of mitochondria per unit area in the nerve. Finally, our data indicate that both IOP and nerve expansion are associated with axon enlargement and reduced axon density for aged nerves. Collectively, our data support the hypothesis that diminished bioenergetic resources in conjunction with early nerve and glial remodeling could be a primary inducer of progression of axon pathology in glaucoma.
Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
PURPOSE - To determine if primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) patients can be differentiated from controls based on metabolic characteristics.
METHODS - We used ultra-high resolution mass spectrometry with C18 liquid chromatography for metabolomic analysis on frozen plasma samples from 72 POAG patients and 72 controls. Metabolome-wide Spearman correlation was performed to select differentially expressed metabolites (DEM) correlated with POAG. We corrected P values for multiple testing using Benjamini and Hochberg false discovery rate (FDR). Hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) was used to depict the relationship between participants and DEM. Differentially expressed metabolites were matched to the METLIN metabolomics database; both DEM and metabolites significantly correlating with DEM were analyzed using MetaboAnalyst to identify metabolic pathways altered in POAG.
RESULTS - Of the 2440 m/z (mass/charge) features recovered after filtering, 41 differed between POAG cases and controls at FDR = 0.05. Hierarchical cluster analysis revealed these DEM to associate into eight clusters; three of these clusters contained the majority of the DEM and included palmitoylcarnitine, hydroxyergocalciferol, and high-resolution METLIN matches to sphingolipids, other vitamin D-related metabolites, and terpenes. MetaboAnalyst also indicated likely alteration in steroid biosynthesis pathways.
CONCLUSIONS - Global ultrahigh resolution metabolomics emphasized the importance of altered lipid metabolism in POAG. The results suggest specific metabolic processes, such as those involving palmitoylcarnitine, sphingolipids, vitamin D-related compounds, and steroid precursors, may contribute to POAG status and merit more detailed study with targeted methods.
Electronic medical records (EMRs) are being widely implemented for use in genetic and genomic studies. As a phenotypic rich resource, EMRs provide researchers with the opportunity to identify disease cohorts and perform genotype-phenotype association studies. The Epidemiologic Architecture for Genes Linked to Environment (EAGLE) study, as part of the Population Architecture using Genomics and Epidemiology (PAGE) I study, has genotyped more than 15,000 individuals of diverse genetic ancestry in BioVU, the Vanderbilt University Medical Center's biorepository linked to a de-identified version of the EMR (EAGLE BioVU). Here we develop and deploy an algorithm utilizing data mining techniques to identify primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) in African Americans from EAGLE BioVU for genetic association studies. The algorithm described here was designed using a combination of diagnostic codes, current procedural terminology billing codes, and free text searches to identify POAG status in situations where gold-standard digital photography cannot be accessed. The case algorithm identified 267 potential POAG subjects but underperformed after manual review with a positive predictive value of 51.6% and an accuracy of 76.3%. The control algorithm identified controls with a negative predictive value of 98.3%. Although the case algorithm requires more downstream manual review for use in large-scale studies, it provides a basis by which to extract a specific clinical subtype of glaucoma from EMRs in the absence of digital photographs.
PURPOSE - To test the hypothesis that primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) patients have a systemic elevation of transforming growth factor β1 (TGFβ1).
METHODS - Plasma was prepared from blood samples drawn from patients of the Vanderbilt Eye Institute during clinic visits. Concentrations of total TGFβ1 and thrombospondin-1 (TSP1) in plasma were determined by ELISA. Statistical significance of differences between POAG and control samples was evaluated by Mann-Whitney test. Regression analysis was used to evaluate correlations between plasma TGFβ1 and patient age and between plasma TGFβ1 and TSP1.
RESULTS - Plasma samples were obtained from 148 POAG patients and 150 controls. Concentration of total TGFβ1 in the plasma of POAG patients (median = 3.25 ng/mL) was significantly higher (P < 0.0001) than in controls (median = 2.46 ng/mL). Plasma TGFβ1 was not correlated with age of patient (P = 0.17). Thrombospondin-1 concentration was also significantly higher (P < 0.0001) in POAG patients (median = 0.774 μg/mL) as compared to controls (median = 0.567 μg/mL). Plasma total TGFβ1 and TSP1 concentrations were linearly correlated (P < 0.0001).
CONCLUSIONS - Plasma samples from POAG patients display elevated total TGFβ1 compared to controls, consistent with elevated systemic TGFβ1 in POAG patients.
Copyright 2014 The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, Inc.
Microfibrils are macromolecular aggregates located in the extracellular matrix of both elastic and nonelastic tissues that have essential functions in formation of elastic fibers and control of signaling through the transforming growth factor beta (TGFβ) family of cytokines. Elevation of systemic TGFβ and chronic activation of TGFβ signal transduction are associated with diseases caused by mutations in microfibril-associated genes, including FBN1. A role for microfibrils in glaucoma is suggested by identification of risk alleles in LOXL1 for exfoliation glaucoma and mutations in LTBP2 for primary congenital glaucoma, both of which are microfibril-associated genes. Recent identification of a mutation in another microfibril-associated gene, ADAMTS10, in a dog model of primary open-angle glaucoma led us to form the microfibril hypothesis of glaucoma, which in general states that defective microfibrils may be an underlying cause of glaucoma. Microfibril defects could contribute to glaucoma through alterations in biomechanical properties of tissue and/or through effects on signaling through TGFβ, which is well established to be elevated in the aqueous humor of glaucoma patients. Recent work has shown that diseases caused by microfibril defects are associated with increased concentrations of TGFβ protein and chronic activation of TGFβ-mediated signal transduction. In analogy with other microfibril-related diseases, defective microfibrils could provide a mechanism for the elevation of TGFβ2 in glaucomatous aqueous humor. If glaucoma shares mechanisms with other diseases caused by defective microfibrils, such as Marfan syndrome, therapeutic interventions to inhibit chronic activation of TGFβ signaling used in those diseases may be applied to glaucoma.
Primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) is a genetically and phenotypically complex disease that is a leading cause of blindness worldwide. Previously we completed a genome-wide scan for early-onset POAG that identified a locus on 9q22 (GLC1J). To identify potential causative variants underlying GLC1J, we used targeted DNA capture followed by high throughput sequencing of individuals from four GLC1J pedigrees, followed by Sanger sequencing to screen candidate variants in additional pedigrees. A mutation likely to cause early-onset glaucoma was not identified, however COL15A1 variants were found in the youngest affected members of 7 of 15 pedigrees with variable disease onset. In addition, the most common COL15A1 variant, R163H, influenced the age of onset in adult POAG cases. RNA in situ hybridization of mouse eyes shows that Col15a1 is expressed in the multiple ocular structures including ciliary body, astrocytes of the optic nerve and cells in the ganglion cell layer. Sanger sequencing of COL18A1, a related multiplexin collagen, identified a rare variant, A1381T, in members of three additional pedigrees with early-onset disease. These results suggest genetic variation in COL15A1 and COL18A1 can modify the age of onset of both early and late onset POAG.
© 2013 The Authors. Clinical Genetics published by John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
MYOC mutations were originally identified in patients with juvenile open angle glaucoma (JOAG). Cell culture and mouse studies suggest that MYOC mutations cause glaucoma through a dominant-negative effect on myocilin protein secretion. We tested this hypothesis with patient samples in this study. Glaucoma and control patients underwent complete ocular examination. DNA samples from glaucoma patients, unaffected relatives and controls were used for DNA sequencing of MYOC. Aqueous humor (AH) samples from glaucoma and control patients were obtained at the time of surgery. Myocilin protein in AH was detected by quantitative Western blot analysis. A de novo Val251Ala mutation of MYOC was found to segregate with disease in a family with autosomal dominant JOAG. Myocilin protein was detected in all control AH samples but was nearly undetectable in AH samples from a patient heterozygous for the Val251Ala mutation. Our results using human patient samples are consistent with a dominant-negative effect of pathogenic MYOC mutations on myocilin secretion.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.
Mutations in fibrillin-1 (FBN1) cause a wide spectrum of disorders, including Marfan syndrome, which have in common defects in fibrillin-1 microfibrils. Ectopia lentis and myopia are frequently observed ocular manifestations of Marfan syndrome. Glaucoma is also associated with Marfan syndrome, though the form of glaucoma has not been well-characterized. In this report, ocular examination of a patient diagnosed with Marfan syndrome based on family history and aortic dilatation was performed, including measurement of facility of aqueous humor outflow by tonography. The patient did not have ectopia lentis at the age of 42 years. Based on optic nerve appearance, reduced outflow facility, elevated IOP with open angles and clear signs of pigment dispersion, the patient was diagnosed with pigmentary glaucoma. The patient was heterozygous for a novel truncating mutation in FBN1, p.Leu72Ter. Histology of normal human eyes revealed abundant expression of elastic fibers and fibrillin-1 in aqueous humor outflow structures. This is the first report of a patient with Marfan syndrome that is caused by a confirmed FBN1 mutation with associated pigmentary glaucoma. In addition to identifying a novel mutation of FBN1 and broadening the spectrum of associated ocular phenotypes in Marfan syndrome, our findings suggest that pigmentary glaucoma may involve defects in fibrillin-1 microfibrils.
Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.