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Presence of a 88 kDa Eales protein in uveitis, tuberculosis, leprosy and rheumatoid arthritis.

Mohanraj Rajesh, Konerirajapuram Natarajan Sulochana, Amritha Lakshmi Sundaram, Subramanian Krishnakumar, Jotirmay Biswas, Sivaramakrishna Ramakrishnan

Med Sci Monit 2003; 9(2): CR95-99

ID: 4753

BACKGROUND: Eales disease (ED) is an idiopathic retinal vasculitis affecting young adult males. We have earlier reported the identification, purification and partial characterization of a novel 88 kDa protein found in the serum of patients with ED. The aim of the present study was to look for the 88 kDa protein in serum samples obtained from cases of retinal vasculitis mimicking ED and in other systemic inflammatory diseases. MATERIAL/METHODS: Serum samples from healthy volunteers and from patients with ED, uveitis, parsplanitis ocular sarcoidosis, toxoplasmosis, leprosy, diabetic retinopathy, viral hepatitis, and rheumatoid arthritis were analyzed for the presence of the 88 kDa protein by polyacralymide gel electrophoresis (PAGE). The immunological identity of the 88 kDa protein found in ED and in other diseases was investigated by Western blot. Immunohistochemistry was performed on epiretinal membranes (ERM) obtained from ED patients to localize the 88 kDa protein. RESULTS: 88 kDa protein were detected in serum samples obtained from patients with posterior uveitis, tuberculosis, leprosy and rheumatoid arthritis. The 88 kDa protein found in serum from patients with ED is immunologically identical to that found in other systemic inflammatory conditions. 88 kDa protein was localized in inflammatory cells and in nonvascular endothelium in ERMs obtained from patients with ED. CONCLUSIONS: We have identified a novel acute phase reactant, which is elaborated in ocular and systemic inflammatory conditions other than Eales disease. Further work is necessary to decipher the precise role of the 88 kDa protein in the pathophysiology of these inflammatory diseases.

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