Eales' disease (ED) is an idiopathic retinal periphlebitis characterized by capillary non-perfusion and neovascularization. In addition to the existing system, a new staging system has been proposed by Saxena et al. Immunological, molecular biological and biochemical studies have indicated the role of human leucocyte antigen, retinal S antigen autoimmunity, Mycobacterium tuberculosis genome, free radical damage and possibly hyperhomocysteinemia in its etiopathogenesis, which appears multifactorial. Oxidant stress has been shown by increase in the levels of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (lipid oxidation) in the vitreous, erythrocytes, platelets, and monocytes. A decrease in vitamins E and C both in active and healed vasculitis, superoxide dismutase, glutathione, and glutathione peroxidase showed a weakened antioxidant defence. Epiretinal membrane from patients of ED who underwent surgery showed, by immunolocalization, presence of carboxy methyl lysine, an advanced glycation end product formed by glycoxidation and is involved in angiogenesis. OH· free radical accumulation in monocytes has been directly shown by electron spin resonance spectrometry. Free radical damage to DNA and of protein was shown by the accumulation of 8 hydroxy 2 deoxyguanosine (in leucocytes) and nitrotyrosine (in monocytes), respectively. Nitrosative stress was shown by increased expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase in monocytes in which levels of iron and copper were increased while those of zinc decreased. A novel 88 kDa protein was found in serum and vitreous in inflammatory condition and had antioxidant function. Platelet fluidity was also affected. Oral, methotrexate in low dosage (12.5 mg/week for 12 weeks) as well as oral vitamin E (400 IU) and C (500 mg) daily for 8 weeks are reported to have beneficial effects.
- Beneficial therapy
- Decreased antioxidant defence
- Eales' disease
- Increased oxidant stress
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