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Semin Immunopathol. 2008 Apr;30(2):127-34. doi: 10.1007/s00281-008-0114-7. Epub 2008 Apr 12.

Autoimmune retinopathy: a review and summary.

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  • 1Kellogg Eye Center, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48105, USA.


Three main forms of autoimmune retinopathy (AIR) have been identified over the last 15 years: cancer-associated retinopathy (CAR), melanoma-associated retinopathy (MAR), and nonneoplastic autoimmune retinopathy (npAIR). In this chapter, the term AIR will be used to encompass all three disorders where there is commonality to their features. Complicating the issue is that AIR can be a secondary complication of other conditions such as retinitis pigmentosa, ocular trauma, birdshot retinopathy, acute zonal occult outer retinopathy (AZOOR), or multiple evanescent white dot syndrome (MEWDS). The many forms of AIR tend to have common clinical features despite the fact that there has been no uniform set of anti-retinal antibodies circulating in these patients. Patients tend to have a wide variance of anti-retinal antibody activity often with three to six different antibodies found on immunoblots. Patients typically present with a sudden onset of photopsia, rapid visual loss, and abnormal electroretinograms (ERGs). Most patients have a panretinal degeneration without pigment deposits.

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