Analysis of Eye Tissue

National Institutes of Health (NIH) logo

National Institutes of Health (NIH)




Eye Disease

Study type


Funder types




Details and patient eligibility


The purpose of this investigation is to better understand the inflammatory process that occurs in uveitis (eye inflammation) through study of eye tissues.

Patients with uveitis sometimes develop cataracts (clouding of the lens of the eye) or clouding of the vitreous-the gel-like material behind the lens-that can impair eyesight. Those who require cataract surgery or vitrectomy are eligible for this study. Samples of eye tissue and fluid normally removed during standard surgical procedures for these conditions will be given to researchers instead of discarded, as is usually done.

Before surgery, patients will undergo routine preoperative tests, including chest X-ray, electrocardiogram, blood tests and urinalysis. They will also have an eye examination and photographs taken of the retina. Other tests that may be performed include fluorescein angiography to evaluate the blood vessels of the retina; ultrasound to examine the back of the eye; and a gallium scan to evaluate inflammation.

Immune cells in the blood and eye tissue will be compared and categorized by disease. The eye fluid will be examined for substances involved in the inflammatory process. These studies may provide information that will lead to improved methods of diagnosis and treatment.

Full description

The purpose of this project is to evaluate intra-ocular tissue such as iris or vitreous from uveitis patients in order to analyze the type and character of the inflammatory response. Patients with a history of uveitis who require cataract surgery or vitreous surgery because of the clinical complications of inflammation, will be entered in this study. The lymphocyte subsets in the peripheral blood and ocular tissue will be compared and categorized by disease. The presence of soluble lymphokines in the intra-ocular fluid will be analyzed. Long term cell cultures of vitreal cells will be attempted to define the T-cell receptors. In addition, a portion of iris tissue or vitreous cells will be frozen to establish a tissue library of uveitis.




No Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion and exclusion criteria

Patients of either sex will be admitted to this study.

All patients should have a previous history of uveitis.

The patient must have lenticular or vitreal opacities which are significantly impairing their vision and for which surgical removal of the opacity has a reasonable chance of improving the vision.

Patients should have vision of 20/80 or worse.

Patients may have any of the following syndromes: anterior uveitis, including HLA-B27-associated iritis and juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, ocular sarcoid, intermediate uveitis and pars planitis, birdshot retinochoroidopathy, Behcet's disease, Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada's syndrome, sympathic ophthalmia and idiopathic posterior uveitis.

Trial contacts and locations



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