Diabetic Retinopathy and VEGF

N Gupta1, S Mansoor1, 2, A Sharma1, 3, A Sapkal1, J Sheth3, P Falatoonzadeh1, BD Kuppermann1, MC Kenney*, 1
1 Gavin Herbert Eye Institute, University of California, Irvine, USA
2 Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA
3 Department of Ophthalmology, Lotus Eye Care Hospital, Coimbatore, TN, India

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© Gupta et al.; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Gavin Herbert Eye Institute 843 Health Sciences Road, Hewitt Hall, Room 2028, University of California Irvine, Irvine, CA 92679, USA; Tel: (949) 824-7603; Fax: (949) 824-9626; E-mail:


Diabetic retinopathy remains the leading vascular-associated cause of blindness throughout the world. Its treatment requires a multidisciplinary interventional approach at both systemic and local levels. Current management includes laser photocoagulation, intravitreal steroids, and anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) treatment along with systemic blood sugar control. Anti-VEGF therapies, which are less destructive and safer than laser treatments, are being explored as primary therapy for the management of vision-threatening complications of diabetic retinopathy such as diabetic macular edema (DME). This review provides comprehensive information related to VEGF and describes its role in the pathogenesis of diabetic retinopathy, and in addition, examines the mechanisms of action for different antiangiogenic agents in relation to the management of this disease. Medline (Pubmed) searches were carried out with keywords “VEGF”, “diabetic retinopathy”, and “diabetes” without any year limitation to review relevant manuscripts used for this article.

Keywords: Diabetic retinopathy, VEGF, DME, diabetes, central retinal vein occlusion, PGF.