Cytokines in proliferative vitreoretinopathy.

Cytokines in proliferative vitreoretinopathy.

Limb GA, Little BC, Meager A, Ogilvie JA, Wolstencroft RA, Franks WA, Chignell AH, Dumonde DC.


Department of Immunology, St Thomas’ Hospital, UMDS, London.


This study determined the presence of interleukin 1 (IL-1), interleukin 6 (IL-6), tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF alpha), tumour necrosis factor beta (TNF beta), interferon gamma (IFN gamma), transforming growth factor beta 2 (TGF beta 2) and fibroblast proliferation activity (FPA) in vitreous aspirates from eyes undergoing vitrectomy for the treatment of retinal detachment complicated by proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR) or uncomplicated retinal detachment (RD). Cadaveric vitreous from normal subjects were used as controls. The results showed that IL-1 and IL-6 predominated in vitreous from eyes with PVR or RD, and that concentrations of IL-6 greater than 20 pg/ml were more frequently found in PVR than in RD (p = 0.031) or control specimens (p = 0.006). Low levels of TNF alpha were observed in 4/18 eyes with PVR, 1/15 eyes with RD and 1/15 control vitreous, and small concentrations of TNF alpha were seen in 3/18 eyes with PVR, 1/15 eyes with RD and 2/15 control vitreous. IFN gamma was detected in 12/18 eyes with PVR, but only in 5/15 eyes with RD (p = 0.048) and 6/15 control specimens. TGF beta 2 was present in all vitreous samples at concentrations ranging from 100 to 4,500 pg/ml with no significant differences among the three groups. Control vitreous possessed the greatest FPA when compared with vitreous from eyes with PVR (p = 0.031) or RD (p = 0.048). These observations provide further evidence that cytokine-mediated pathways of inflammation are involved in the pathogenesis of PVR and point to the possible involvement of IL-1, IL-6 and IFN gamma in cellular interactions leading to chronicity.