Verhandelingen van de Koninklijke Academie voor Geneeskunde van België
Glaucoma is an important cause of blindness. Therefore, the optimalisation of glaucoma surgery might have an important impact on the visual prognosis and the quality of life of glaucoma patients. This project focuses on the development of antifibrotic strategies that would inhibit the scarring of the created fistula, and thus improve the outcome after glaucoma surgery. We found that the vascular growth factor VEGF that is mostly known for its role in blood vessel formation also plays a role in postoperative wound healing. Furthermore, we studied the potential of anti-VEGF therapy to inhibit excessive wound healing (scar formation) after glaucoma surgery. Indeed, both in vitro and in vivo, VEGF prove to be efficacious to reduce scar formation, and thus improve the prognosis after glaucoma surgery. This fundamental research translated into a prospective clinical study, in which anti-VEGF is administered during glaucoma surgery, to improve the outcome after the surgery. We therefore hope that this translational research will indeed result in a better prognosis and quality of life for our glaucoma patients.