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M.A. Goto, T. Niizuma, H. Ujihara, K. Mukai, Y. Ishii, M. Matsubara; Immunohistochemical Studies of the Conjunctiva in Behçet’s Disease . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2006;47(13):4519.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Occlusive vasculitis is the major common histopathological lesion seen in Behçet’s disease, and recent researches suggest immunopathological mechanisms underlying ocular inflammation in the disease. To comparatively investigate immunohistochemical changes in the conjunctiva of ocular Behçet’s disease and other uveitic conditions, this study was performed.
After informed consent was obtained from all patients, biopsy specimens of the conjunctiva were harvested during intraocular surgery in 5 eyes with Behçet’s disease, 3 with sarcoidosis and one with Harada’s disease. The specimens were stained with PAS and HE, followed by staining using Type IV collagen, IL–1, and VEGF as the first antibodies. Electronmicroscopic investigations were also performed.
In Behçet’s disease, Type IV collagen was highly expressed in nerve fibers as well as in obstructed capillaries and veins. Neovascularization was seen. Cells were stained positive for IL–1 and VEGF. In eyes with frequent ocular inflammation, marked hypertrophy of the epithelial basement membrane was recognized. The hypertrophied epithelium was intensely stained for Type IV collagen, and irregularity in cell alignment was seen. In sarcoidosis and Harada’s disease, neovascularization and a few lymphocytes were observed in the absence of obstructive vasculitis. Immunohistochemical activity was minimal and conjunctival epithelium was intact.
Conjunctival biopsy revealed prominent immunohistochemical activity in Behçet’s disease as compared to other types of uveitis in addition to occlusive vasculitis in capillaries and veins.
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