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The Inhibitory Effect of Thalidomide Analogue on Corneal Neovascularization in Rabbits

Lee, You Kyung MD; Chung, Sung Kun MD, PhD

doi: 10.1097/ICO.0b013e318292a79d
Clinical Science

Purpose: To evaluate the effect of thalidomide analogue CC-3052 on corneal neovascularization in the rabbit model.

Methods: Corneal neovascularization was induced in 15 rabbits by a silk suture in the corneal stroma. At 1 week after suturing, 30 eyes were divided into 5 groups of 6 eyes each. Three groups were treated with topical CC-3052 at 3 different concentrations: 0.25% (group 1), 0.5% (group 2), and 1.0% (group 3). All treatments were performed twice a day for a week. A 0.5% concentration of CC-3052 was injected subconjunctivally once in group 4. In group 5, a topical balanced salt solution was added twice a day for a week as the experimental control group. Rabbit corneas were photographed by a digital camera and examined by the operating microscope. Half of the corneal specimens were analyzed histopathologically, and the other half were used to measure the concentration of tumor necrosis factor α and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) messenger RNA by reverse transcriptase–polymerase chain reaction.

Results: The neovascularized area was decreased in all treatment groups compared with the control group. There was a significant difference in the percentage and score of corneal neovascularization between the control and all treatment groups. Inflammation, fibroblast, neovascularization, and anti-VEGF antibody intensities were significantly lower in the control group. The concentration of VEGF and tumor necrosis factor α was significantly lower in the control group. There was no difference between the treatment groups.

Conclusions: Topical and subconjunctival administration of thalidomide analogue CC-3052 was found to be effective for the inhibition of corneal neovascularization.

Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science, St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea.

Reprints: Sung Kun Chung, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science, St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, 62 Yeouido-dong, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul 150-713, Korea (e-mail: eyedoc@catholic.ac.kr).

The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to disclose.

Received November 14, 2012

Accepted March 16, 2013

Copyright © 2013 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.