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03-29-2017 | Retinopathy | Review | Article

Diabetic retinopathy: new therapeutic perspectives based on pathogenic mechanisms

Journal: Journal of Endocrinological Investigation

Authors: C. Hernández, A. Simó-Servat, P. Bogdanov, R. Simó

Publisher: Springer International Publishing

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Abstract

Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is the leading cause of visual impairment and preventable blindness and represents a significant socioeconomic cost for healthcare systems worldwide. In early stages of DR the only therapeutic strategy that physicians can offer is a tight control of the risk factors for DR (mainly blood glucose and blood pressure). The currently available treatments for DR are applicable only at advanced stages of the disease and are associated with significant adverse effects. Therefore, new treatments for the early stages of DR are needed. However, in early stages of DR invasive treatments such as intravitreal injections are too aggressive, and topical treatment seems to be an emerging route. In the present review, therapeutic strategies based on the main pathogenic mechanisms involved in the development of DR are reviewed. The main gap in the clinical setting is the treatment of early stages of DR and, therefore, this review emphasizes in this issue by giving an overview of potential druggable targets. By understanding of disease-specific pathogenic mechanisms, biological heterogeneity and progression patterns in early and advanced DR a more personalised approach to patient treatment will be implemented.
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