Inflammatory cytokines regulate secretion of VEGF and chemokines by human conjunctival fibroblasts: Role in dysfunctional tear syndrome

Chandrasekharam N. Nagineni, Abitha William, Aswini Cherukuri, William Samuel, John J. Hooks, Barbara Detrick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Ocular surface inflammation is one of the primary mechanisms associated with dysfunctional tear syndrome (DTS), also known as dry eye disease. DTS, more prevalent in older populations, causes ocular discomfort and visual disturbance due to dryness on the surface layer in the eye. We used human conjunctival fibroblast cultures (HCJVF) to investigate the effects of inflammatory cytokines IFN-γ, TNF-α and IL-1β (ITI) on the secretions of VEGF and chemokines. Our results demonstrate the elevated secretion of angiogenic VEGF molecules by ITI without affecting anti-angiogenic molecules, PEDF, endostatin, thrombospondin and sVEGF-R1. The secretion of interferon-γ inducible chemokines, CXCL9, -10, -11 by HCJVF were significantly enhanced by ITI. Our in vitro study supports previously reported observations of elevated VEGF and chemokines in tear fluids of DTS patients, reiterating the role of inflammatory reactions in DTS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16-19
Number of pages4
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016



  • Chemokines
  • Conjunctival fibroblasts
  • Dysfunctional tear syndrome
  • Inflammation
  • VEGF

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Hematology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology

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