Immunopathology of the noninfectious posterior and intermediate uveitides

Surv Ophthalmol. Nov-Dec 2001;46(3):209-33. doi: 10.1016/s0039-6257(01)00275-2.


The posterior and intermediate uveitides share an underlying immune etiology; however, they can be clinically and immunopathologically distinguished. Although the initiating stimuli for posterior and intermediate uveities are not known, it is believed that an exogenous agent (such as a bacterium or a virus) or an endogenous molecule may induce disease. In either case, T-helper lymphocytes in conjunction with human leukocyte antigens are likely to be involved. This review examines the epidemiology, histology, immunopathology, and theories of pathogenesis of several posterior and intermediate uveitides, including sympathetic ophthalmia, Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada syndrome, Behçet's disease, sarcoidosis, intermediate uveitis, white dot syndromes, and birdshot retinochoroidopathy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cytokines / immunology
  • HLA Antigens / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immunogenetics
  • T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer / immunology
  • Uveitis, Intermediate / immunology*
  • Uveitis, Intermediate / pathology*
  • Uveitis, Posterior / immunology*
  • Uveitis, Posterior / pathology*


  • Cytokines
  • HLA Antigens