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Dry Eye
Ocular Surface Disease

Tear cytokine ratios may be a potential dry eye disease biomarker

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Tear inflammatory cytokine ratios (CRs) may hold potential as a more nuanced biomarker for of dry eye disease (DED compared to absolute cytokine levels, according to a study.

Although some significant correlations were found between certain cytokine ratios and DED signs, no significant correlation was observed with DED symptoms as measured by the Ocular Surface Disease Index (OSDI).

The study emphasizes the need for further research in diverse dry eye populations, addressing potential biases in sampling and variations in tear collection techniques.

The study, conducted across 10 sites as part of the Dry Eye Assessment and Management study, included 131 patients. Tear concentrations of key cytokines (IL-1b, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, IL-17A, IFN-g, and TNF-a) were measured, alongside various DED signs and symptoms.

Results showed that certain cytokine ratios, including IL-6:IL-10, IL-8:IL-10, and TNF-a:IL-10, exhibited significant correlations, primarily with conjunctival or corneal staining, as well as the composite sign severity score. For instance, IL-8:IL-10 and conjunctival staining demonstrated a correlation coefficient (rho) of 0.19 (P = 0.03), while IL-6:IL-10 and corneal staining showed a rho of 0.31 (P < 0.001).

Reference
Zhao CS, Chen Y, Ying GS, Asbell PA; Dry Eye Assessment and Management (DREAM) Study Group. Association of Tear Cytokine Ratios with Symptoms and Signs of Dry Eye Disease: Biomarker Data from the Dry Eye Assessment and Management Study. Curr Eye Res. 2023;1-9. doi: 10.1080/02713683.2023.2262168. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 37781912.

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