Expression of thrombospondin-1 in ischemia-induced retinal neovascularization.
Thrombospondin-1 is an extracellular matrix protein that inhibits endothelial cell proliferation, migration, and angiogenesis. This study was performed to investigate the role of thrombospondin-1 in ischemic retinal neovascularization. In a murine model of retinal neovascularization, thrombospondin-1 mRNA was increased from postnatal day 13 (P13), with a threefold peak response observed on P15, corresponding to the time of development of retinal neovascularization. Prominent expression of thrombospondin-1 was observed in neovascular cells, specifically, cells adjacent to the area of nonperfusion. It has been suggested that vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) plays a major role in ischemia-induced retinal neovascularization of this model, so we studied the effects of VEGF on thrombospondin-1 expression. In bovine retinal microcapillary endothelial cells, VEGF induced a biphasic response of thrombospondin-1 expression; VEGF decreased thrombospondin-1 mRNA 0.41-fold after 4 hours, whereas it increased, with a threefold peak response, after 24 hours. VEGF-induced endothelial cell proliferation was completely inhibited by exogenous thrombospondin-1 and increased by 37.5% with anti-thrombospondin-1 antibody. The present findings suggest that, in the ischemic retina, retinal neovascular cells increase thrombospondin-1 expression, and VEGF may stimulate endogenous thrombospondin-1 induction, which inhibits endothelial cell growth. VEGF-mediated thrombospondin-1 induction in ischemia-induced angiogenesis may be a negative feedback mechanism. (+info)
Metabolic acidosis-induced retinopathy in the neonatal rat.
PURPOSE: Carbon dioxide (CO2)-induced retinopathy (CDIR) in the neonatal rat, analogous to human retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), was previously described by our group. In this model, it is possible that CO2-associated acidosis provides a biochemical mechanism for CDIR. Therefore, the effect of pure metabolic acidosis on the developing retinal vasculature of the neonatal rat was investigated. METHODS: A preliminary study of arterial blood pH was performed to confirm acidosis in our model. In neonatal rats with preplaced left carotid artery catheters, acute blood gas samples were taken 1 to 24 hours after gavage with either NH4Cl 1 millimole/100 g body weight or saline. In the subsequent formal retinopathy study, 150 newborn Sprague-Dawley rats were raised in litters of 25 and randomly assigned to be gavaged twice daily with either NH4Cl 1 millimole/100 g body weight (n = 75) or saline (n = 75) from day 2 to day 7. After 5 days of recovery, rats were killed, and retinal vasculature was assessed using fluorescein perfusion and ADPase staining techniques. RESULTS: In the preliminary pH study, the minimum pH after NH4Cl gavage was 7.10+/-0.10 at 3 hours (versus 7.37+/-0.03 in controls, mean +/- SD, P < 0.01). In the formal retinopathy study, preretinal neovascularization occurred in 36% of acidotic rats versus 5% of controls (P < 0.001). Acidotic rats showed growth retardation (final weight 16.5+/-3.0 g versus 20.2+/-2.6 g, P < 0.001). The ratio of vascularized to total retinal area was smaller in acidotic rats (94%+/-4% versus 96%+/-2%, P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: Metabolic acidosis alone induces neovascularization similar to ROP in the neonatal rat. This suggests a possible biochemical mechanism by which high levels of CO2 induce neovascularization and supports the suggestion that acidosis may be an independent risk factor for ROP. (+info)
Human diabetic neovascular membranes contain high levels of urokinase and metalloproteinase enzymes.
PURPOSE: Retinal neovascularization is one of the leading causes of blindness. A crucial event in this process is the remodeling and penetration of the capillary basement membrane by migrating endothelial cells. This process requires proteolysis of basement membrane components by a variety of proteinases. The objective of the present study was to determine the expression of proteinases in human retinal tissues showing active neovascularization. METHODS: Epiretinal neovascular membranes surgically removed from patients with proliferative diabetic retinopathy were analyzed by zymography, and the types and amounts of proteinases present in the tissues were determined. Retinas from nondiabetic donor eyes served as control specimens. RESULTS: Both the high- (54 kDa) and low- (33 kDa) molecular-weight forms of urokinase were present at significantly higher levels in neovascular membranes than in normal retinas. The pro forms of the matrix metalloproteinases (MMP) MMP-2 and MMP-9 were significantly elevated in the neovascular membranes in comparison with levels in normal retinas. In addition, the active forms of these enzymes were present in the membranes, whereas there was no detectable level of the active forms in normal retinas. CONCLUSIONS: Human diabetic neovascular membranes contain high levels of urokinase and MMP. The increased activity of proteinases in the final common pathway of retinal neovascularization indicates that inhibition of these enzymes may be a useful therapeutic target as an alternative approach in the management of proliferative retinopathies. (+info)
Radiotherapy for isolated occult subfoveal neovascularisation in age related macular degeneration: a pilot study.
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Teletherapy has been proposed as a possible treatment for choroidal neovascular membranes (CNV), secondary to age related macular degeneration (AMD) not amenable to laser photocoagulation. The aim of this prospective study has been to investigate the effect of teletherapy on isolated occult choroidal neovascular membranes of subfoveal location. METHODS: 28 AMD patients presenting with retrofoveal isolated occult CNV demonstrated by fluorescein angiography were treated by external beam radiation. A complete ophthalmological examination, fluorescein angiography, and indocyanine green angiography (ICG) were performed within 15 days before treatment and repeated at follow up. A total dose of 16 Gy was applied in four sessions of 4 Gy using a 4 MeV photon beam. Follow up ranged from 6 to 9 months (mean follow up 6.4 months). RESULTS: Visual acuity was found to be stable in 68% of the cases. The decrease in visual acuity was of 3-6 lines in 18% and of more than 6 lines in 10% of the eyes at last examination. On fluorescein angiography the size of the lesion area was found to be stable in 67%, decreased in 13%, and increased in 20% of the cases. On ICG angiography the size of the CNV was stable in 93% and increased in 7% of the cases. All the eyes experiencing a visual acuity decrease showed either no change or an increase in size of the membrane on fluorescein angiography and/or on ICG. CONCLUSION: According to this study with strict inclusion criteria, external beam radiotherapy seems to have a beneficial effect on the evolution of isolated occult subfoveal CNV. (+info)
Suppression of retinal neovascularization by the NF-kappaB inhibitor pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate in mice.
PURPOSE: To evaluate the effect of pyrrolidine dithiocarbamate (PDTC), an inhibitor of nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kappaB), on retinal neovascularization in a murine model of ischemic retinopathy. METHODS: One-week-old C57BL/6N mice were exposed to 75%+/-2% oxygen for 5 days and then were returned to room air to induce retinal neovascularization. After the return to room air, the left and right eyes were injected intravitreally with PDTC or a vehicle, respectively. Retinal neovascularization was examined by injecting fluorescein dextran and angiography after 5 days in room air and was quantitated histologically with a masked protocol. The effects of PDTC on NF-kappaB activation were evaluated by immunohistochemistry. To examine the toxicity of PDTC, the histologic change in the retina was examined by light and electron microscopy. RESULTS: Retinal neovascularization in the eye injected with PDTC by intravitreal methods was reduced in 100% of animals compared with that apparent in the vehicle-treated eye. The inhibitory effect was dose-dependent, with a maximal inhibition of 39% (P < 0.01) at a dose of 1 nmole. The immunostaining intensity for NF-KB in the retina was reduced by PDTC injections. No side effects by PDTC in the retina were observed by light and electron microscopy. CONCLUSIONS: NF-kappaB activation appears to be required for retinal angiogenesis, given that the administration of PDTC suppressed retinal neovascularization. PDTC may prove beneficial in the treatment of ischemic neovascular diseases such as diabetic retinopathy and retinal vein occlusion. (+info)
Dramatic inhibition of retinal and choroidal neovascularization by oral administration of a kinase inhibitor.
The most common cause of new blindness in young patients is retinal neovascularization, and in the elderly is choroidal neovascularization. Therefore, there has been a great deal of attention focused on the development of new treatments for these disease processes. Previous studies have demonstrated partial inhibition of retinal neovascularization in animal models using antagonists of vascular endothelial growth factor or other signaling molecules implicated in the angiogenesis cascade. These studies have indicated potential for drug treatment, but have left many questions unanswered. Is it possible to completely inhibit retinal neovascularization using drug treatment with a mode of administration that is feasible to use in patients? Do agents that inhibit retinal neovascularization have any effect on choroidal neovascularization? In this study, we demonstrate complete inhibition of retinal neovascularization in mice with oxygen-induced ischemic retinopathy by oral administration of a partially selective kinase inhibitor that blocks several members of the protein kinase C family, along with vascular endothelial growth factor and platelet-derived growth factor receptor tyrosine kinases. The drug also blocks normal vascularization of the retina during development but has no identifiable adverse effects on mature retinal vessels. In addition, the kinase inhibitor causes dramatic inhibition of choroidal neovascularization in a laser-induced murine model. These data provide proof of concept that pharmacological treatment is a viable approach for therapy of both retinal and choroidal neovascularization. (+info)
Angiogenic factors in human proliferative sickle cell retinopathy.
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Preretinal neovascular formations called sea fans develop at the border of non-perfused peripheral retina in sickle cell retinopathy. Angiogenic factors which could contribute to their development, however, have not been examined previously. The objective of this study was to determine immunohistochemically if vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) or basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) were associated with sea fan formations. METHODS: Immunohistochemistry on cryosections was used to localise bFGF, VEGF, heparan sulphate proteoglycan, human serum albumin, collagens IV and II, and von Willebrand factor in tissue from five sickle cell and one control subject. RESULTS: The greatest immunoreactivity for VEGF and bFGF was in the feeder and preretinal vessels of sea fans (p<0.01). The most prominent reaction product was localised to vascular endothelial cells. In retinal vessels, VEGF and bFGF immunoreactivities were greater in sickle cell subjects (both proliferative and non-proliferative) than in the control subject (p<0.01 and p<0.02 respectively). In the sickle cell retina, no angiogenic factor immunoreactivity was detected in non-perfused periphery and there was no significant difference in bFGF or VEGF immunoreactivity between perfused retina and the border of perfused and non-perfused areas. CONCLUSION: Our results demonstrate for the first time that VEGF and bFGF are associated with sea fan formations in sickle cell retinopathy. Both factors may function in an autocrine manner because immunoreactivity for these factors was greater within the neovascularisation than in adjacent retina. (+info)
N(epsilon)(carboxymethyl)lysin and the AGE receptor RAGE colocalize in age-related macular degeneration.
PURPOSE: To investigate whether glycoxidation products and the receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE) are present and colocalize in subfoveal membranes of patients with age-related macular degeneration (ARMD). METHODS: Surgically removed subfoveal fibrovascular membranes from 12 patients, 11 related to ARMD and 1 to an idiopathic membrane, were analyzed for the presence of the glycoxidation product N(epsilon)-(carboxymethyl)lysin (CML), one of the receptors for advanced glycation end products, RAGE, and the activation of NFkB, using immunohistochemistry. RESULTS: CML-like immunoreactivity was found in all ARMD specimens examined adjacent or colocalized with RAGE, but not in the idiopathic membrane. RAGE immunoreactive material was found in CD68-positive cells and in the fibrous matrix. CD68-positive cells and surrounding areas stained for p50, the activated form of NFkB. CONCLUSIONS: These results indicate that glycoxidation products are present in subretinal membranes of patients with ARMD. The concomitant expression of RAGE in these membranes and the finding of activated NFkB is suggestive of an implication of glycoxidation product formation in the pathogenesis of the disease. (+info)