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K Norose, A Yano, X C Wang, T Tokushima, J Umihira, A Seki, M Nohara, K Segawa; Dominance of activated T cells and interleukin-6 in aqueous humor in Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada disease.. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 1994;35(1):33-39.
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PURPOSE: To determine the immunopathologic role of the lymphocytes and lymphokines in aqueous humor (AH) of patients with Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada disease (VKH). METHODS: The distribution of leukocyte subsets in the peripheral blood and AH was examined using fluorescein isothiocyanate-conjugated monoclonal antibodies. The levels of lymphokines, such as interleukin-2 (IL-2) and interleukin-6 (IL-6), in the sera, AH, and cerebrospinal fluid from the patients with VKH were determined using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. RESULTS: T cells constituted the majority of lymphocytes within AH. The value for CD4+ cells (helper/inducer T lymphocytes) in AH was 51.7% +/- 14.9% (mean +/- SD) and that for CD8+ cells (cytotoxic/suppressor T lymphocytes) was 31.1% +/- 13.0%. The percentage of HLA-DR+ cells (B lymphocytes, monocytes, macrophages, and activated T lymphocytes) in AH (50.8% +/- 24.9%) significantly exceeded (P < 0.001) that in blood (13.1% +/- 4.2%). The percentage of CD8+ cells in AH from three patients with the delayed type of VKH rose during their clinical course. The level of IL-6 was significantly elevated in AH from the patients with VKH. The level of IL-6 in AH correlated with the number of lymphocytes in AH, and it reflected the severity of the inflammatory response in AH of patients with VKH. The level of IL-2 in the sera, AH, and cerebrospinal fluid was in the normal range. CONCLUSIONS: Aqueous humor lymphocytes from the patients with VKH were more activated than were peripheral blood lymphocytes. IL-6 may play an important role as an inflammatory mediator in VKH. It may be useful to analyze the lymphocyte subsets and the levels of lymphokines, especially of IL-6, at the site of inflammation in uvea to improve the criteria for assessing the prognosis of VKH.
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