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Progress in the use of plasma rich in growth factors in ophthalmology: from ocular surface to ocular fundus


Introduction: The use of blood derivatives and especially Plasma rich in growth factors (PRGF), for regenerative purposes has been a common trend along the last decades in the field of oral surgery, dermatology, orthopedics, and more recently in ophthalmology.

Areas covered: PRGF is a type of platelet-rich plasma that is being explored for the treatment of ocular injuries. The present review article highlights 50 ophthalmology-related publications about the application of PRGF in the treatment of acute and chronic pathologies in ophthalmology as well as most relevant challenges and future prospects.

Expert opinion: PRGF technology provides a wide range of formulations that can be used therapeutically in many different acute and chronic ocular pathologies. In addition to eye drops enriched with autologous growth factors, PRGF enables the preparation of both immunologically safe and fibrin-based formulations. Recent advances in the field have promoted PRGF storage for 12 months under freezing conditions, its daily use for 7 days at room temperature and the freeze-dried formulation. The thermally treated immunosafe formulation has shown promising clinical results for the treatment of several diseases such as Sjögren syndrome, graft versus host disease or cicatrizing conjunctivitis. In addition, several fibrin formulations have been preclinically evaluated and clinically incorporated as an adjuvant to ocular surface or glaucoma surgeries, dermal fat graft procedures, limbal stem cell expansion and retinal surgeries. The present review explores the latest scientific and clinical data, current challenges, and main prospects of this technology for the treatment of several ocular injuries.

Keywords: Cicatrizing conjunctivitis; PRGF; Sjögren Syndrome; freeze-dried; glaucoma; graft versus host disease; growth factors; immunosafe; macular hole; platelet-rich plasma; regenerative medicine.