Purpose: Sex-related influences have been implicated in the pathogenesis of vernal keratoconjunctivitis (VKC), an allergic eosinophilic disease. Methods: The authors evaluated tarsal and bulbar conjunctival biopsies from seven patients with severe and symptomatic VKC for the presence of estrogen and progesterone receptors by using monoclonal antibodies with a peroxidase- antiperoxidase technique. Results: Both the epithelium and subepithelium of the tarsal and bulbar conjunctiva of patients with VKC, but not those of four nonatopic control subjects, showed intense positive staining for estrogen and progesterone receptors. Immunofluorescence co-localization of both estrogen and progesterone receptors with eosinophil cationic protein showed that approximately 70% of positive cells were eosinophils. Conclusions: Sexual hormones, through their receptors, may influence the activity of eosinophils in patients with VKC.
|Number of pages||6|
|Publication status||Published - 1995|
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