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Stephen C Pflugfelder, Fang Bian, William Farley, Michael E Stern, Cintia S De Paiva; Conjunctival dendritic cell maturation and goblet cell density in aqueous tear deficiency. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2017;58(8):3754.
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to test the hypothesis that clinical severity and goblet cell loss is correlated with dendritic cell (DC) maturation markers in the conjunctiva of aqueous tear deficient (ATD) patients.
Diagnosis and clinical severity grading (0-4) of ATD were based on symptom severity scores, OCT measured inferior tear meniscus height, tear break-up time and ocular surface dye staining scores. DCs were obtained from impression cytology of the superior and exposed (nasal + temporal) bulbar conjunctiva of the right eye. Goblet cell density (GCD) was measured in digital images of PAS-stained membranes taken from the temporal bulbar conjunctiva of the left eye. Flow cytometry measured percentage of cells positive for the maturation markers HLA-DR and CD86 in conjunctival DCs. Spearman correlations between GCD and DC markers were calculated.
8 control and 11 ATD subjects were evaluated. Mean clinical severity score was 2.2 (range 0-3). Compared to the control group, the percentages of CD45+HLA-DR+ and CD45+CD11c+CD86+ cells were higher in the temporal/nasal and superior (P<0.05) bulbar conjunctiva of the ATD group. Clinical severity negatively correlated with GCD (r = -0.54, P<0.05) and positively correlated with percentage of CD45+HLA-DR+ cells (r = 0.71, P<0.05). GCD was negatively correlated with percentage of CD45+HLA-DR+ cells (r = -0.61, P<0.05).
There is a greater percentage of mature DCs in the conjunctiva of ATD patients. DC maturation correlated with clinical severity and GC loss. It remains to be determined if DC maturation is the cause or consequence of GC loss in ATD.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2017 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Baltimore, MD, May 7-11, 2017.
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