The lack of association between vascular endothelial growth factor and retinopathy of prematurity in an observational study

Kandasamy, Yogavijayan, Hartley, Leo, Rudd, Donna, and Smith, Roger (2018) The lack of association between vascular endothelial growth factor and retinopathy of prematurity in an observational study. Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine, 31 (16). pp. 2202-2208.

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Abstract

Purpose: The objective of this study was to investigate the association between prematurity, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF-A), the VEGFR1(Soluble fms-like tyrosine kinase-1 (sFlt−1)), and retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).

Method: A cohort of 53 neonates (gestation < 28 weeks) was recruited into this study and peripheral venous samples for vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and sFlt-1 measurement were obtained between gestational ages 32° to 326 weeks.

Results: The mean birth weight for the preterm neonates was 850 (178)g and the median gestational age was 26.4 [24.7–27.4] weeks. The median VEGF-A level was 1348 [608–2216] pg/mL and the median sFLT-1 level was 178 [103–244] pg/mL. Thirty three neonates (33/53) developed various stages of ROP during their stay in the neonatal unit but only five neonates developed severe (stage 3) ROP needing treatment. The neonates with ROP were smaller (birth weight 801(111) vs. 990 (175) g; p<0.0001), more preterm (gestation 25.4 [24.2–26.0] vs. 27.1 [26.8–27.9] weeks; p<0.0001) and received supplemental oxygen for a longer duration (1140 [218–1813] vs. 04 [40−434] hours; p= 0.012). There was no statistically significant difference in the VEGF-A level or sFLT-1 levels between those who developed ROP and those who did not. There was a positive correlation between VEGF and both birth weight and gestation respectively. There was no correlation between sFLT1 and birth weight or gestation. VEGF-A/sFLT-1 ratio in babies treated for ROP was significantly lower compared to those not treated (2.8 [1.0–5.7] vs. 9.9 [5.6–13.7]; p=0.04). A logistic regression model identified gestational age to be a statistically significant predictor of ROP (Odds ratio 0.03 (0.001–0.550); p = 0.019).

Conclusion: There is no direct correlation between systemic VEGF –A or sFLT-1 plasma levels and severity of ROP in extremely preterm neonates. The link between VEGF and ROP remains to be fully understood.

Item ID: 49092
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1476-4954
Keywords: retinopathy of prematurity; vascular endothelial growth factor; preterm; premature; extremely low birth weight
Funders: National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC).
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2017 00:35
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1114 Paediatrics and Reproductive Medicine > 111403 Paediatrics @ 70%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1113 Ophthalmology and Optometry > 111399 Ophthalmology and Optometry not elsewhere classified @ 30%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9201 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) > 920199 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) not elsewhere classified @ 100%
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