IgG-Autoantibodies against retinal, optic nerve, and optic nerve head antigen in patients with glaucoma
Grus F. H., Joachim S. C., Pfeiffer N.
Dept. of Ophthalmology, University of Mainz, Germany
Purpose: Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness worldwide. There is evidence that an autoimmune mechanism could be involved in the pathogenesis of glaucoma. The aim of this study was to compare the autoantibody repertoires against different antigens (retina, optic nerve, and optic nerve head) in sera of glaucoma patients and healthy subjects.
Method: Three groups were investigated: healthy volunteers (CO, n=30), patients with primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG, n=19), and normal tension glaucoma (NTG, n=17). The sera of patients were tested against Western blots of retinal, optic nerve, and optic nerve head antigens. The IgG autoantibody patterns were digitized and subsequently analyzed by multivariate statistical techniques.
Results: All groups showed complex patterns of autoantibodies against retinal, optic nerve, and optic nerve head antigens. The analysis of discriminance revealed a statistical significant difference between the patterns of all clinical groups. Furthermore, the multivariate approach led to a quantification of the differences in the antibody profiles of patient sera against the different antigens. The POAG group had the most significant difference against retinal antigen (P=0.0021) compared to all other antigens. In the NTG group the highest reactivity was found against optic nerve head (P=0.00053) and optic nerve (P=0.0025).
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