December 2020

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Wang J, He X, Meng H, Li Y, Dmitriev P, Tian F, Page JC, Lu RQ, He Z. Robust Myelination of Regenerated Axons Induced by Combined Manipulations of GPR17 and Microglia. Neuron 2020;108(5):876-886.e4.Abstract
Myelination facilitates rapid axonal conduction, enabling efficient communication across different parts of the nervous system. Here we examined mechanisms controlling myelination after injury and during axon regeneration in the central nervous system (CNS). Previously, we discovered multiple molecular pathways and strategies that could promote robust axon regrowth after optic nerve injury. However, regenerated axons remain unmyelinated, and the underlying mechanisms are elusive. In this study, we found that, in injured optic nerves, oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) undergo transient proliferation but fail to differentiate into mature myelination-competent oligodendrocytes, reminiscent of what is observed in human progressive multiple sclerosis. Mechanistically, we showed that OPC-intrinsic GPR17 signaling and sustained activation of microglia inhibit different stages of OPC differentiation. Importantly, co-manipulation of GPR17 and microglia led to extensive myelination of regenerated axons. The regulatory mechanisms of stage-dependent OPC differentiation uncovered here suggest a translatable strategy for efficient de novo myelination after CNS injury.
Wang J, Wang X, Gao Y, Lin Z, Chen J, Gigantelli J, Shapiro JI, Xie Z, Pierre SV. Stress Signal Regulation by Na/K-ATPase As a New Approach to Promote Physiological Revascularization in a Mouse Model of Ischemic Retinopathy. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2020;61(14):9.Abstract
Purpose: The identification of target pathways to block excessive angiogenesis while simultaneously restoring physiological vasculature is an unmet goal in the therapeutic management of ischemic retinopathies. pNaKtide, a cell-permeable peptide that we have designed by mapping the site of α1 Na/K-ATPase (NKA)/Src binding, blocks the formation of α1 NKA/Src/reactive oxygen species (ROS) amplification loops and restores physiological ROS signaling in a number of oxidative disease models. The aim of this study was to evaluate the importance of the NKA/Src/ROS amplification loop and the effect of pNaKtide in experimental ischemic retinopathy. Methods: Human retinal microvascular endothelial cells (HRMECs) and retinal pigment epithelium (ARPE-19) cells were used to evaluate the effect of pNaKtide on viability, proliferation, and angiogenesis. Retinal toxicity and distribution were assessed in those cells and in the mouse. Subsequently, the role and molecular mechanism of NKA/Src in ROS stress signaling were evaluated biochemically in the retinas of mice exposed to the well-established protocol of oxygen-induced retinopathy (OIR). Finally, pNaKtide efficacy was assessed in this model. Results: The results suggest a key role of α1 NKA in the regulation of ROS stress and the Nrf2 pathway in mouse OIR retinas. Inhibition of α1 NKA/Src by pNaKtide reduced pathologic ROS signaling and restored normal expression of hypoxia-inducible factor 1-α/vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). Unlike anti-VEGF agents, pNaKtide did promote retinal revascularization while inhibiting neovascularization and inflammation. Conclusions: Targeting α1 NKA represents a novel strategy to develop therapeutics that not only inhibit neovascularization but also promote physiological revascularization in ischemic eye diseases.
Webb LM, Chen JJ, Aksamit AJ, Bhattacharyya S, Chwalisz BK, Balaban D, Manzano GS, Ali AS, Lord J, Clardy SL, Samudralwar RD, Mao-Draayer Y, Garrity JA, Bhatti TM, Turner LE, Flanagan EP. A multi-center case series of sarcoid optic neuropathy. J Neurol Sci 2020;:117282.Abstract
OBJECTIVE: The diagnosis of sarcoid optic neuropathy is time-sensitive, as delayed treatment risks irreversible vision loss. We sought to analyze its characteristics and outcomes. METHODS: We performed a multi-center retrospective study of sarcoid optic neuropathy among 5 USA medical centers. Inclusion criteria were: 1) clinical optic neuropathy; 2) optic nerve/sheath enhancement on neuroimaging; 3) pathological confirmation of systemic or nervous system sarcoidosis. RESULTS: Fifty-one patients were included. The median onset age of sarcoid optic neuropathy was 50 years (range, 17-70 years) and 71% were female. The median visual acuity at nadir in the most affected eye was 20/80 (range, 20/20 to no-light-perception). Thirty-four of 50 (68%) patients had radiologic evidence of other nervous system involvement and 20 (39%) patients had symptoms/signs of other cranial nerve dysfunction. Cerebrospinal fluid analysis revealed an elevated white blood cell count in 22 of 31 (71%) patients (median: 14/μL; range: 1-643/μL). Pathologic confirmation of sarcoidosis was by biopsy of systemic/pulmonary site, 34 (67%); optic nerve/sheath, 9 (18%); or other nervous system region, 8 (16%). Forty patients improved with treatment (78%), 98% receiving corticosteroids and 65% receiving steroid-sparing immunosuppressants, yet 11/46 patients (24%) had a visual acuity of 20/200 or worse at last follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Sarcoid optic neuropathy frequently occurs with other clinical and radiologic abnormalities caused by neurosarcoidosis and diagnostic confirmation occasionally requires optic nerve/sheath biopsy. Improvement with treatment is common but most patients have some residual visual disability. Improved recognition and a more expeditious diagnosis and treatment may spare patients from permanent vision loss.
Wolkow N, Jakobiec FA, Afrogheh AH, Pai SI, Faquin WC. High Expression of Programmed Death Ligand 1 and Programmed Death Ligand 2 in Ophthalmic Sebaceous Carcinoma: The Case for a Clinical Trial of Checkpoint Inhibitors. Am J Ophthalmol 2020;220:128-139.Abstract
PURPOSE: To evaluate the expression of programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) and programmed death ligand 2 (PD-L2) in ocular adnexal sebaceous carcinoma (OASC), and to appraise these findings within the context of recent comparable studies. DESIGNS: Retrospective case series. METHODS: Twenty cases of primary OASC were immunostained for PD-L1, PD-L2 and CD8. PD-L1 and PD-L2 expression were graded with both the combined positive score (CPS) and the tumor proportion score (TPS). Both raw CPS and TPS were reported, as well as positivity with TPS and CPS ≥1. CD8 expression was graded on a 0-3 scale. Charts were reviewed for clinical correlations. The results of the current study were compared with results of similar recent investigations. RESULTS: For the 20 cases, mean expression of PD-L1 with CPS was 29.7 (range 0-101.5) and with TPS was 12.2 (range 0-95.8); mean expression of PD-L2 with CPS was 7.9 (range 0-37.3) and with TPS was 1.9 (range 0-12.9). PD-L1 CPS ≥1 was detected in 95% of OASC, while PD-L1 TPS ≥1 was found in 75%. PD-L2 CPS ≥1 was present in 60%, while only 20% had PD-L2 TPS ≥1. Immune cells appeared to contribute to a substantial proportion of PD-L1 and PD-L2 positivity, and a conspicuous CD8-positive T-lymphocytic infiltrate was present in most tumors. Significant correlations were identified between tissue expression of PD-L1, PD-L2, and CD8. Tissues with greater levels of PD-L1 tended to express higher levels of PD-L2 and CD8. The degree of PD-L1 and PD-L2 expression was also associated with the area in millimeters squared of the immunostained tumor, suggesting that tumor sampling may influence interpretation of PD-L1 and PD-L2 expression in ocular adnexal tumors. CONCLUSIONS: The current and preceding studies confirm that PD-L1 and PD-L2 are expressed in a high percentage of OASCs. These results support the premise that checkpoint inhibitor drugs hold considerable therapeutic promise for patients with OASC and stimulate the institution of clinical trials.
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Yu Z, Ma S, Wu M, Cui H, Wu R, Chen S, Xu C, Lu X, Feng S. Self-assembling hydrogel loaded with 5-FU PLGA microspheres as a novel vitreous substitute for proliferative vitreoretinopathy. J Biomed Mater Res A 2020;108(12):2435-2446.Abstract
The vitreous substitute for proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR) surgery remains an unmet clinical need in ophthalmology. In our study, we developed an in situ formed hydrogel by crosslinking polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) and chitosan as a potential vitreous substitute. 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) Poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) microspheres were developed and loaded onto the PVA/chitosan hydrogels to treat PVR. In vitro, PVA/chitosan hydrogels at four concentrations were subjected to morphological, physical, rheological analyses, and cytotoxicity was evaluated together with the characterization of 5-FU PLGA microspheres. In vivo, pharmacologically induce PVR rabbits were performed a vitrectomy. In the PVA group, 3% PVA/chitosan hydrogel was injected into the vitreous cavity. In the PVA/MS group, 3% PVA/chitosan hydrogel and 5-FU PLGA microspheres were injected. In the Control group, phosphate-buffered saline was injected. Therapeutic efficacy was evaluated with postoperative examinations and histological analyses. This study demonstrated that the 3% PVA/chitosan hydrogel showed properties similar to those of the human vitreous and could be a novel in situ crosslinked vitreous substitute for PVR. Loading 5-FU PLGA microspheres onto this hydrogel may represent an effective strategy to improve the prognosis of PVR.

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