Proteomic biomarkers of retinal inflammation in diabetic retinopathy

Hannah Youngblood, Rebekah Robinson, Ashok Sharma, Shruti Sharma

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Diabetic retinopathy (DR), a sight-threatening neurovasculopathy, is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the developed world. DR arises as the result of prolonged hyperglycemia and is characterized by leaky retinal vasculature, retinal ischemia, retinal inflammation, angiogenesis, and neovascularization. The number of DR patients is growing with an increase in the elderly population, and therapeutic approaches are limited, therefore, new therapies to prevent retinal injury and enhance repair are a critical unmet need. Besides vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-induced vascular proliferation, several other mechanisms are important in the pathogenesis of diabetic retinopathy, including vascular inflammation. Thus, combining anti-VEGF therapy with other new therapies targeting these pathophysiological pathways of DR may further optimize treatment outcomes. Technological advancements have allowed for high-throughput proteomic studies examining biofluids such as aqueous humor, vitreous humor, tear, and serum. Many DR biomarkers have been identified, especially proteins involved in retinal inflammatory processes. This review attempts to summarize the proteomic biomarkers of DR-associated retinal inflammation identified over the last several years.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number4755
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number19
StatePublished - Oct 1 2019


  • Biomarkers
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Proteomics
  • Retinal inflammation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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