Biochemical Markers and Alterations in Keratoconus

Rohit Shetty, Sharon D'Souza, Pooja Khamar, Arkasubhra Ghosh, Rudy M. M. A. Nuijts, Swaminathan Sethu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal(Systematic) Review article peer-review

10 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Keratoconus (KC) is a corneal ectatic condition characterized by focal structural changes, resulting in progressive thinning, biomechanical weakening, and steeping of the cornea that can lead to worsening visual acuity due to irregular astigmatism and corneal scarring in more advanced cases. It is a relatively common ectatic disease of the cornea predominantly affecting the younger population. Despite its worldwide prevalence, its incidence is rather varied with a higher incidence among the Middle Eastern and South Asian population. Dysregulated corneal extracellular matrix remodeling underlies KC pathogenesis. However, a lack of absolute clarity regarding the factors that initiate and drive progression poses a significant challenge in its prevention and management. KC is a complex multifactorial disease as it is associated with a wide variety of etiological factors such as environmental stimuli/insults, oxidative stress, genetic predisposition, comorbidities, and eye rubbing. A series of studies using corneal tissues (epithelium, stroma), cultured corneal fibroblasts/keratocytes, tear fluid, aqueous humor, and blood from KC subjects has reported significant alterations in various biochemical factors such as extracellular matrix components, cellular homeostasis regulators, inflammatory factors, hormones, metabolic products, and chemical elements. It has become apparent that alterations in the biochemical mediators (related to various etiologies) could contribute to KC pathogenesis by altering the dynamics of extracellular matrix remodeling events such as collagen deposition, degradation, and cross-linking in the cornea. Determining key disease contributing biochemical mediators would aid in disease monitoring, prediction or abatement of disease progression, and development of targeted therapeutics to improve disease prognosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)533-540
Number of pages8
JournalAsia-Pacific Journal of Ophthalmology
Volume9
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Keywords

  • biochemical
  • extracellular matrix
  • hormones
  • inflammation
  • keratoconus
  • LYSYL OXIDASE
  • TEAR FILM
  • OXIDATIVE STRESS
  • EXTRACELLULAR-MATRIX
  • INFLAMMATORY MOLECULES
  • CORNEAL EPITHELIUM
  • PROLIDASE ACTIVITY
  • GENE-EXPRESSION
  • AQUEOUS-HUMOR
  • CROSS-LINKING

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