gms | German Medical Science

23rd Annual Meeting of the German Retina Society

German Retina Society

24.09. - 25.09.2010, Freiburg

Systemic VEGF levels before and during intravitreal Ranibizumab (Lucentis®) treatment

Meeting Abstract

  • Birthe Meyer-Rüsenberg - University Eye Clinic Hamburg-Eppendorf
  • F. Kunst - University Eye Clinic Hamburg-Eppendorf
  • R. Grierson - University Eye Clinic Hamburg-Eppendorf
  • G. Richard - University Eye Clinic Hamburg-Eppendorf
  • M. Berna-Thill - University Eye Clinic Hamburg-Eppendorf

German Retina Society. 23rd Annual Conference of the German Retina Society. Freiburg i. Br., 24.-25.09.2010. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2010. Doc10rg20

doi: 10.3205/10rg20, urn:nbn:de:0183-10rg202

This is the translated version of the article.
The original version can be found at:

Published: September 21, 2010

© 2010 Meyer-Rüsenberg et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Background: Anti-VEGF treatment has become the new gold standard in the therapy of neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nvAMD). However, it is not possible up to now to predict the individual success of this therapy. It was the aim of this study to monitor VEGF levels in the blood plasma before and during Anti-VEGF therapy.

Methods: 31 patients with newly diagnosed and untreated nvAMD were enrolled in the study. Blood was taken before every injection and 4 weeks after the last injection. VEGF levels were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Patients’ basic VEGF plasma levels were compared to healthy young and age-matched controls and their clinical course was reviewed.

Results: VEGF plasma levels of AMD patients (300.5 ± 184.7 pg/ml) were significantly higher compared to healthy young (45.5 ± 6.8 pg/ml) or age-matched controls (46.1 ± 8.5 pg/ml). During VEGF treatment VEGF levels decreased dramatically to 58.5 ± 39.1 pg/ml, 68.8 ± 58.8 pg/ml and 43.2 pg/ml ± 56.5 pg/ml after three injections. Patients with a need to retreat after the third injections showed higher VEGF levels before and after the first injection.

Conclusions: VEGF levels in the blood plasma of patients with nvAMD are markedly elevated. Intravitreal Ranibizumab lead to a reduction of systemic VEGF levels to values of healthy controls. Basic VEGF plasma levels could be a possible predictive value for the success of Anti-VEGF therapy.