Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a disease that can cause blindness in very low birth weight infants. The incidence of ROP is closely correlated with the weight and the gestational age at birth. Despite current therapies, ROP continues to be a highly debilitating disease. Our advancing knowledge of the pathogenesis of ROP has encouraged investigations into new anti-vasculogenic therapies. The purpose of this article is to review the findings on the pathophysiological mechanisms that contribute to the transition between the first and second phases of ROP and to investigate new potential therapies. Oxygen has been well characterised for the key role that it plays in retinal neoangiogenesis. Low or high levels of pO2 regulate the normal or abnormal production of HIF-1 and VEGF, which are the predominant regulators of retinal angiogenesis. Although low oxygen saturation appears to reduce the risk of severe ROP when carefully controlled within the first few weeks of life, the optimal level of saturation still remains uncertain. IGF-1 and Epo are fundamentally required during both phases of ROP, as alterations in their protein levels can modulate disease progression. Therefore, rhIGF-1 and rhEpo were tested for their abilities to prevent the loss of vasculature during the first phase of ROP, whereas anti-VEGF drugs were tested during the second phase. At present, previous hypotheses concerning ROP should be amended with new pathogenetic theories. Studies on the role of genetic components, nitric oxide, adenosine, apelin and β-adrenergic receptor have revealed new possibilities for the treatment of ROP. The genetic hypothesis that single-nucleotide polymorphisms within the β-ARs play an active role in the pathogenesis of ROP suggests the concept of disease prevention using β-blockers. In conclusion, all factors that can mediate the progression from the avascular to the proliferative phase might have significant implications for the further understanding and treatment of ROP.

The pathophisiology of retinopathy of prematurity: an update of previous and recent knowledge

FILIPPI L;BAGNOLI, PAOLA;DAL MONTE, MASSIMO;
2014

Abstract

Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a disease that can cause blindness in very low birth weight infants. The incidence of ROP is closely correlated with the weight and the gestational age at birth. Despite current therapies, ROP continues to be a highly debilitating disease. Our advancing knowledge of the pathogenesis of ROP has encouraged investigations into new anti-vasculogenic therapies. The purpose of this article is to review the findings on the pathophysiological mechanisms that contribute to the transition between the first and second phases of ROP and to investigate new potential therapies. Oxygen has been well characterised for the key role that it plays in retinal neoangiogenesis. Low or high levels of pO2 regulate the normal or abnormal production of HIF-1 and VEGF, which are the predominant regulators of retinal angiogenesis. Although low oxygen saturation appears to reduce the risk of severe ROP when carefully controlled within the first few weeks of life, the optimal level of saturation still remains uncertain. IGF-1 and Epo are fundamentally required during both phases of ROP, as alterations in their protein levels can modulate disease progression. Therefore, rhIGF-1 and rhEpo were tested for their abilities to prevent the loss of vasculature during the first phase of ROP, whereas anti-VEGF drugs were tested during the second phase. At present, previous hypotheses concerning ROP should be amended with new pathogenetic theories. Studies on the role of genetic components, nitric oxide, adenosine, apelin and β-adrenergic receptor have revealed new possibilities for the treatment of ROP. The genetic hypothesis that single-nucleotide polymorphisms within the β-ARs play an active role in the pathogenesis of ROP suggests the concept of disease prevention using β-blockers. In conclusion, all factors that can mediate the progression from the avascular to the proliferative phase might have significant implications for the further understanding and treatment of ROP.
Cavallaro, G; Filippi, L; Bagnoli, Paola; LA MARCA, G; Cristofori, G; Raffaeli, G; Padrini, L; Araimo, G; Fumagalli, M; Groppo, M; DAL MONTE, Massimo; Osnaghi, S; Fiorini, P; Mosca, F.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/205023
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