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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(7), 1349;

Tear Film Steroid Profiling in Dry Eye Disease by Liquid Chromatography Tandem Mass Spectrometry

Department of Medical Oral and Biotechnological Sciences, University “G. d’Annunzio” of Chieti-Pescara, 66100 Chieti, Italy
Analytical Biochemistry and Proteomics Laboratory, Research Centre on Aging and Translational Medicine (Ce.S.I-MeT), University “G. d’Annunzio” of Chieti-Pescara, 66100 Chieti, Italy
Opthalmic Clinic, Department of Medicine and Aging Science, “G. d’Annunzio” University of Chieti-Pescara, 66100 Chieti, Italy
Department of Pharmacy, University “G. d’Annunzio” of Chieti-Pescara, 66100 Chieti, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 April 2017 / Revised: 13 June 2017 / Accepted: 22 June 2017 / Published: 24 June 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dry Eye and Ocular Surface Disorders)
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Dry eye disease (DED) is a multifactorial disorder of the ocular surface unit resulting in eye discomfort, visual disturbance, and ocular surface damage; the risk of DED increases with age in both sexes, while its incidence is higher among females caused by an overall hormonal imbalance. The role of androgens has recently investigated and these hormones were considered to have a protective function on the ocular surface. In order to correlate DED to tear steroid levels, a robust, specific, and selective method for the simultaneous quantification of cortisol (CORT), corticosterone (CCONE), 11-deoxycortisol (11-DECOL), 4-androstene-3,17-dione (ADIONE), testosterone (TESTO), 17α-hydroxyprogesterone (17-OHP), and progesterone (PROG) was developed and applied for the analysis of tear samples. The method involves a simple extraction procedure of steroids from tears collected on Schirmer strips, followed by a high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS/MS) analysis. In total, tear samples from 14 DED female patients and 13 healthy female controls were analysed and, CORT, ADIONE, and 17-OHP response levels resulted significantly decreased in dry eye patients respect to controls. The receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve obtained by the combination of these three steroids (AUC = 0.964) demonstrated the good diagnostic power of the differential tear steroids in identifying DED. In conclusion, the present method made it possible, for the first time, to study steroid profiling directly in tear fluid. View Full-Text
Keywords: dry eye disease; tears; steroids; mass spectrometry; biomarkers; LC-MS/MS dry eye disease; tears; steroids; mass spectrometry; biomarkers; LC-MS/MS

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Pieragostino, D.; Agnifili, L.; Cicalini, I.; Calienno, R.; Zucchelli, M.; Mastropasqua, L.; Sacchetta, P.; Del Boccio, P.; Rossi, C. Tear Film Steroid Profiling in Dry Eye Disease by Liquid Chromatography Tandem Mass Spectrometry. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 1349.

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