Proteomic analysis of human aqueous humor from fuchs uveitis syndrome

Qingqin Tao, Lingzi Wu, Jinying An, Zheng Liu, Kai Zhang, Lei Zhou, Xiaomin Zhang (Corresponding Author)

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


Fuchs uveitis syndrome (FUS) is a commonly misdiagnosed uveitis syndrome often presenting as an asymptomatic mild inflammatory condition until complications arise. The diagnosis of this disease remains clinical because of the lack of specific laboratory tests. The aqueous humor (AH) is a complex fluid containing nutrients and metabolic wastes from the eye. Changes in the AH protein provide important information for diagnosing intraocular diseases. This study aimed to analyze the proteomic profile of AH in individuals diagnosed with FUS and to identify potential biomarkers of the disease. We used liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry-based proteomic methods to evaluate the AH protein profiles of all 37 samples, comprising 15 patients with FUS, six patients with Posner-Schlossman syndrome (PSS), and 16 patients with age-related cataract. A total of 538 proteins were identified from a comprehensive spectral library of 634 proteins. Subsequent differential expression analysis, enrichment analysis, and construction of key sub-networks revealed that the inflammatory response, complement activation and hypoxia might be crucial in mediating the process of FUS. The hypoxia inducible factor-1 may serve as a key regulator and therapeutic target. Additionally, the innate and adaptive immune responses are considered dominant in the patients with FUS. A diagnostic model was constructed using machine-learning algorithm to classify FUS, PSS, and normal controls. Two proteins, complement C1q subcomponent subunit B and secretogranin-1, were found to have the highest scores by the Extreme Gradient Boosting, suggesting their potential utility as a biomarker panel. Furthermore, these two proteins as biomarkers were validated in a cohort of 18 patients using high resolution multiple reaction monitoring assays. Therefore, this study contributes to advancing of the current knowledge of FUS pathogenesis and promotes the development of effective diagnostic strategies.
Original languageEnglish
Article number109752
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalExperimental Eye Research
Publication statusPublished - 18 Dec 2023


  • LC-MS/MS
  • Fuchs uveitis syndrome
  • Aqueous humor
  • Proteomic
  • XGBoost
  • HR-MRM


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