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Coronavirus: good or bad news for ocular diseases?
  1. Valentin Navel1,
  2. Frédéric Chiambaretta1,
  3. Frédéric Dutheil2
  1. 1Ophthalmology, University Hospital of Clermont-Ferrand, Clermont-Ferrand, Auvergne Rhône Alpes, France
  2. 2Preventive and Occupational Medicine, University Hospital of Clermont-Ferrand, Clermont-Ferrand, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France
  1. Correspondence to Dr Valentin Navel; valentin.navel{at}

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To the editor: In urban area of industrial countries, the ocular surface is exposed daily to intense burden of particulate matter, ozone, carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and sulfur dioxide produced by fossil fuel. Air pollution is a causative factor for various ocular surface complaints such as eye redness, irritation and blurring of vision, as well as various ocular diseases such as meibomian gland disease and dry eye disease, vernal keratoconjunctivitis, allergic conjunctivitis, retinal vein and artery occlusion, and glaucoma.1–4 Putative pathophysiology of air pollutants is mediated by oxidative stress in ocular tissues exposed to atmospheric changes involving damage of cellular DNA, membrane lipids peroxidation, inactivation of receptor protein and enzymes, and finally cells apoptosis and autophagy mediated by autophagosome.3 5 Similarly, air pollutants promote neurotoxic and microvascular effects impacting on cardiovascular diseases as well as glaucoma and retinal vascular diseases.2 6 7 Since 8 December 2019, the world has been confronted by a viral pneumonia pandemic caused by the coronavirus named Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV-2) or Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Initially described in Wuhan, Hubei, in the Peoples Republic of China, the movement of people and freight through tourism and commercial airline flights contributed to the spread of the global pandemic, causing millions …

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