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Murakami Y, Matsumoto H, Roh M, Giani A, Kataoka K, Morizane Y, Kayama M, Thanos A, Nakatake S, Notomi S, Hisatomi T, Ikeda Y, Ishibashi T, Connor KM, Miller JW, Vavvas DG. Programmed necrosis, not apoptosis, is a key mediator of cell loss and DAMP-mediated inflammation in dsRNA-induced retinal degeneration. Cell Death Differ 2014;21(2):270-7.Abstract
There is no known treatment for the dry form of an age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Cell death and inflammation are important biological processes thought to have central role in AMD. Here we show that receptor-interacting protein (RIP) kinase mediates necrosis and enhances inflammation in a mouse model of retinal degeneration induced by dsRNA, a component of drusen in AMD. In contrast to photoreceptor-induced apoptosis, subretinal injection of the dsRNA analog poly(I : C) caused necrosis of the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), as well as macrophage infiltration into the outer retinas. In Rip3(-/-) mice, both necrosis and inflammation were prevented, providing substantial protection against poly(I : C)-induced retinal degeneration. Moreover, after poly(I : C) injection, Rip3(-/-) mice displayed decreased levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines (such as TNF-α and IL-6) in the retina, and attenuated intravitreal release of high-mobility group box-1 (HMGB1), a major damage-associated molecular pattern (DAMP). In vitro, poly(I : C)-induced necrosis were inhibited in Rip3-deficient RPE cells, which in turn suppressed HMGB1 release and dampened TNF-α and IL-6 induction evoked by necrotic supernatants. On the other hand, Rip3 deficiency did not modulate directly TNF-α and IL-6 production after poly(I : C) stimulation in RPE cells or macrophages. Therefore, programmed necrosis is crucial in dsRNA-induced retinal degeneration and may promote inflammation by regulating the release of intracellular DAMPs, suggesting novel therapeutic targets for diseases such as AMD.
Matsumoto H, Murakami Y, Kataoka K, Lin H, Connor KM, Miller JW, Zhou D, Avruch J, Vavvas DG. Mammalian STE20-like kinase 2, not kinase 1, mediates photoreceptor cell death during retinal detachment. Cell Death Dis 2014;5:e1269.Abstract
Photoreceptor cell death is the definitive cause of vision loss in retinal detachment (RD). Mammalian STE20-like kinase (MST) is a master regulator of both cell death and proliferation and a critical factor in development and tumorigenesis. However, to date the role of MST in neurodegeneration has not been fully explored. Utilizing MST1(-/-) and MST2(-/-) mice we identified MST2, but not MST1, as a regulator of photoreceptor cell death in a mouse model of RD. MST2(-/-) mice demonstrated significantly decreased photoreceptor cell death and outer nuclear layer (ONL) thinning after RD. Additionally, caspase-3 activation was attenuated in MST2(-/-) mice compared to control mice after RD. The transcription of p53 upregulated modulator of apoptosis (PUMA) and Fas was also reduced in MST2(-/-) mice post-RD. Retinas of MST2(-/-) mice displayed suppressed nuclear relocalization of phosphorylated YAP after RD. Consistent with the reduction of photoreceptor cell death, MST2(-/-) mice showed decreased levels of proinflammatory cytokines such as monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 and interleukin 6 as well as attenuated inflammatory CD11b cell infiltration during the early phase of RD. These results identify MST2, not MST1, as a critical regulator of caspase-mediated photoreceptor cell death in the detached retina and indicate its potential as a future neuroprotection target.
Lei H, Kazlauskas A. A reactive oxygen species-mediated, self-perpetuating loop persistently activates platelet-derived growth factor receptor α. Mol Cell Biol 2014;34(1):110-22.Abstract
The platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) receptors (PDGFRs) are central to a spectrum of human diseases. When PDGFRs are activated by PDGF, reactive oxygen species (ROS) and Src family kinases (SFKs) act downstream of PDGFRs to enhance PDGF-mediated tyrosine phosphorylation of various signaling intermediates. In contrast to these firmly established principles of signal transduction, much less is known regarding the recently appreciated ability of ROS and SFKs to indirectly and chronically activate monomeric PDGF receptor α (PDGFRα) in the setting of a blinding condition called proliferative vitreoretinopathy (PVR). In this context, we made a series of discoveries that substantially expands our appreciation of epigenetic-based mechanisms to chronically activate PDGFRα. Vitreous, which contains growth factors outside the PDGF family but little or no PDGFs, promoted formation of a unique SFK-PDGFRα complex that was dependent on SFK-mediated phosphorylation of PDGFRα and activated the receptor's kinase activity. While vitreous engaged a total of five receptor tyrosine kinases, PDGFRα was the only one that was activated persistently (at least 16 h). Prolonged activation of PDGFRα involved mTOR-mediated inhibition of autophagy and accumulation of mitochondrial ROS. These findings reveal that growth factor-containing biological fluids, such as vitreous, are able to tirelessly activate PDGFRα by engaging a ROS-mediated, self-perpetuating loop.
Newman-Casey PA, Talwar N, Nan B, Musch DC, Pasquale LR, Stein JD. The potential association between postmenopausal hormone use and primary open-angle glaucoma. JAMA Ophthalmol 2014;132(3):298-303.Abstract
IMPORTANCE: Retinal ganglion cells are known to express estrogen receptors and prior studies have suggested an association between postmenopausal hormone (PMH) use and decreased intraocular pressure, suggesting that PMH use may decrease the risk for primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG). OBJECTIVE: To determine whether the use of 3 different classes of PMH affects the risk for POAG. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: Retrospective longitudinal cohort analysis of claims data from women 50 years or older enrolled in a US managed-care plan for at least 4 years in which enrollees had at least 2 visits to an eye care provider during the period 2001 through 2009. EXPOSURE: Postmenopausal hormone medications containing estrogen only, estrogen + progesterone, and estrogen + androgen, as captured from outpatient pharmacy claims over a 4-year period. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Hazard ratios (HRs) for developing incident POAG. RESULTS: Of 152,163 eligible enrollees, 2925 (1.9%) developed POAG. After adjustment for confounding factors, each additional month of use of PMH containing estrogen only was associated with a 0.4% reduced risk for POAG (HR, 0.996 [95% CI, 0.993-0.999]; P = .02). The risk for POAG did not differ with each additional month of use of estrogen + progesterone (HR, 0.994 [95% CI, 0.987-1.001]; P = .08) or estrogen + androgen (HR, 0.999 [95% CI, 0.988-1.011]; P = .89). CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Use of PMH preparations containing estrogen may help reduce the risk for POAG. If prospective studies confirm the findings of this analysis, novel treatments for this sight-threatening condition may follow.
Michan S, Juan AM, Hurst CG, Cui Z, Evans LP, Hatton CJ, Pei DT, Ju M, Sinclair DA, Smith LEH, Chen J. Sirtuin1 over-expression does not impact retinal vascular and neuronal degeneration in a mouse model of oxygen-induced retinopathy. PLoS One 2014;9(1):e85031.Abstract
Proliferative retinopathy is a leading cause of blindness, including retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) in children and diabetic retinopathy in adults. Retinopathy is characterized by an initial phase of vessel loss, leading to tissue ischemia and hypoxia, followed by sight threatening pathologic neovascularization in the second phase. Previously we found that Sirtuin1 (Sirt1), a metabolically dependent protein deacetylase, regulates vascular regeneration in a mouse model of oxygen-induced proliferative retinopathy (OIR), as neuronal depletion of Sirt1 in retina worsens retinopathy. In this study we assessed whether over-expression of Sirtuin1 in retinal neurons and vessels achieved by crossing Sirt1 over-expressing flox mice with Nestin-Cre mice or Tie2-Cre mice, respectively, may protect against retinopathy. We found that over-expression of Sirt1 in Nestin expressing retinal neurons does not impact vaso-obliteration or pathologic neovascularization in OIR, nor does it influence neuronal degeneration in OIR. Similarly, increased expression of Sirt1 in Tie2 expressing vascular endothelial cells and monocytes/macrophages does not protect retinal vessels in OIR. In addition to the genetic approaches, dietary supplement with Sirt1 activators, resveratrol or SRT1720, were fed to wild type mice with OIR. Neither treatment showed significant vaso-protective effects in retinopathy. Together these results indicate that although endogenous Sirt1 is important as a stress-induced protector in retinopathy, over-expression of Sirt1 or treatment with small molecule activators at the examined doses do not provide additional protection against retinopathy in mice. Further studies are needed to examine in depth whether increasing levels of Sirt1 may serve as a potential therapeutic approach to treat or prevent retinopathy.
Loomis SJ, Kang JH, Weinreb RN, Yaspan BL, Cooke Bailey JN, Gaasterland D, Gaasterland T, Lee RK, Lichter PR, Budenz DL, Liu Y, Realini T, Friedman DS, McCarty CA, Moroi SE, Olson L, Schuman JS, Singh K, Vollrath D, Wollstein G, Zack DJ, Brilliant M, Sit AJ, Christen WG, Fingert J, Kraft P, Zhang K, Allingham RR, Pericak-Vance MA, Richards JE, Hauser MA, Haines JL, Pasquale LR, Wiggs JL. Association of CAV1/CAV2 genomic variants with primary open-angle glaucoma overall and by gender and pattern of visual field loss. Ophthalmology 2014;121(2):508-16.Abstract
PURPOSE: The CAV1/CAV2 (caveolin 1 and caveolin 2) genomic region previously was associated with primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG), although replication among independent studies has been variable. The aim of this study was to assess the association between CAV1/CAV2 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and POAG in a large case-control dataset and to explore associations by gender and pattern of visual field (VF) loss further. DESIGN: Case-control study. PARTICIPANTS: We analyzed 2 large POAG data sets: the Glaucoma Genes and Environment (GLAUGEN) study (976 cases, 1140 controls) and the National Eye Institute Glaucoma Human Genetics Collaboration (NEIGHBOR) consortium (2132 cases, 2290 controls). METHODS: We studied the association between 70 SNPs located within the CAV1/CAV2 genomic region in the GLAUGEN and NEIGHBOR studies, both genotyped on the Illumina Human 660WQuadv1C BeadChip array and imputed with the Markov Chain Haplotyping algorithm using the HapMap 3 reference panel. We used logistic regression models of POAG in the overall population and separated by gender, as well as by POAG subtypes defined by type of VF defect (peripheral or paracentral). Results from GLAUGEN and NEIGHBOR were meta-analyzed, and a Bonferroni-corrected significance level of 7.7 × 10(-4) was used to account for multiple comparisons. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Overall POAG, overall POAG by gender, and POAG subtypes defined by pattern of early VF loss. RESULTS: We found significant associations between 10 CAV1/CAV2 SNPs and POAG (top SNP, rs4236601; pooled P = 2.61 × 10(-7)). Of these, 9 were significant only in women (top SNP, rs4236601; pooled P = 1.59 × 10(-5)). Five of the 10 CAV1/CAV2 SNPs were associated with POAG with early paracentral VF (top SNP, rs17588172; pooled P = 1.07 × 10(-4)), and none of the 10 were associated with POAG with peripheral VF loss only or POAG among men. CONCLUSIONS: CAV1/CAV2 SNPs were associated significantly with POAG overall, particularly among women. Furthermore, we found an association between CAV1/CAV2 SNPs and POAG with paracentral VF defects. These data support a role for caveolin 1, caveolin 2, or both in POAG and suggest that the caveolins particularly may affect POAG pathogenesis in women and in patients with early paracentral VF defects.
Mott KR, Allen SJ, Zandian M, Akbari O, Hamrah P, Maazi H, Wechsler SL, Sharpe AH, Freeman GJ, Ghiasi H. Inclusion of CD80 in HSV targets the recombinant virus to PD-L1 on DCs and allows productive infection and robust immune responses. PLoS One 2014;9(1):e87617.Abstract
CD80 plays a critical role in stimulation of T cells and subsequent control of infection. To investigate the effect of CD80 on HSV-1 infection, we constructed a recombinant HSV-1 virus that expresses two copies of the CD80 gene in place of the latency associated transcript (LAT). This mutant virus (HSV-CD80) expressed high levels of CD80 and had similar virus replication kinetics as control viruses in rabbit skin cells. In contrast to parental virus, this CD80 expressing recombinant virus replicated efficiently in immature dendritic cells (DCs). Additionally, the susceptibility of immature DCs to HSV-CD80 infection was mediated by CD80 binding to PD-L1 on DCs. This interaction also contributed to a significant increase in T cell activation. Taken together, these results suggest that inclusion of CD80 as a vaccine adjuvant may promote increased vaccine efficacy by enhancing the immune response directly and also indirectly by targeting to DC.
Ma J, Mehta M, Lam G, Cyr D, Ng TF, Hirose T, Tawansy KA, Taylor AW, Lashkari K. Influence of subretinal fluid in advanced stage retinopathy of prematurity on proangiogenic response and cell proliferation. Mol Vis 2014;20:881-93.Abstract
PURPOSE: The clinical phenotype of advanced stage retinopathy of prematurity (ROP, stages 4 and 5) cannot be replicated in an animal model. To dissect the molecular events that can lead up to advanced ROP, we examined subretinal fluid (SRF) and surgically dissected retrolental membranes from patients with advanced ROP to evaluate its influences on cell proliferation, angiogenic properties, and macrophage polarity. METHODS: We compared our findings to SRF collected from patients with uncomplicated rhegmatogenous retinal detachment (RD) without proliferative vitreoretinopathy and surgically dissected epiretinal membrane from eyes with macular pucker. All subretinal fluid samples were equalized for protein. The angiogenic potential of SRF from ROP eyes was measured using a combination of capillary cord formation in a fibrin clot assay, and its proliferative effect was tested with a DNA synthesis of human retinal microvascular endothelial cells. Findings were compared with SRF collected from participants with uncomplicated rhegmatogenous RD without proliferative vitreoretinopathy. The ability of SRF to induce nitric oxide production was measured in vitro using murine J774A.1 macrophages. Cytokine profiles of SRF from ROP and RD eyes were measured using a multienzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Fluorescent immunohistochemistry of retrolental membranes from ROP was performed to detect the presence of leukocytes and the composition of tissue macrophages using markers for M1 and M2 differentiation. RESULTS: The cytokine composition in SRF revealed that in ROP, not only were several proangiogenic factors were preferentially elevated but also the profile of proinflammatory factors was also increased compared to the RD eyes. SRF from ROP eyes supported cell proliferation and endothelial cord formation while SRF from RD eyes had inhibitory effects. SRF from eyes with ROP but not RD robustly induced nitric oxide production in macrophages. Furthermore, fluorescent immunostaining revealed a preponderance of M1 over M2 macrophages in retrolental fibrous membranes from ROP eyes. The cytokine profile and biologic properties of SRF in ROP promote a proangiogenic environment, which supports the maintenance and proliferation of fibrous membranes associated with advanced stages of ROP. In contrast, SRF from RD eyes exhibits a suppressive environment for endothelial cell proliferation and angiogenesis. CONCLUSIONS: Our investigation demonstrates that the microenvironment in advanced ROP eyes is proangiogenic and proinflammatory. These findings suggest that management of advanced ROP should not be limited to the surgical removal of the fibrovascular membranes and antiangiogenic therapy but also directed to anti-inflammatory therapy and to promote M2 activation over M1 activity.
Lee HS, Schlereth SL, Park EY, Emami-Naeini P, Chauhan SK, Dana R. A novel pro-angiogenic function for interferon-γ-secreting natural killer cells. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2014;55(5):2885-92.Abstract
PURPOSE: To explore the function of natural killer (NK) cells in inflammatory angiogenesis in mice. METHODS: To study ocular angiogenic responses we used the cornea BFGF micropellet and the laser-induced choroidal neovascularization (CNV) mouse models (C57BL/6). To deplete NK cells in these models, we injected an anti-NK1.1 antibody or an isotype antibody as a control. Corneas or choroids were immunohistochemically stained for blood vessels (CD31), macrophages (F4/80), or CNV (isolectin-IB4). Vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGF), IFN-γ, or TNF-α levels were measured by real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) or flow cytometry. A coculture assay of macrophages, NK cells, and human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) was analyzed morphometrically to examine the ability of NK cells to induce angiogenesis in vitro. RESULTS: Our data demonstrate that in vivo depletion of NK cells leads to a significant reduction of corneal angiogenesis and CNV. Furthermore, NK cell depletion reduces macrophage infiltration into the cornea and mRNA expression levels of VEGF-A, VEGF-C, and VEGFR3 at day 7 after micropellet insertion. In the laser-induced CNV model, our data show that NK cell depletion leads to decreased areas of CNV and significantly reduced mRNA expression of VEGFs and IFN-γ in the choroid. An in vitro coculture assay shows an IFN-γ-dependent increase in VEGF expression levels, thereby increasing endothelial cell proliferation. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings demonstrate a novel pro-angiogenic function for NK cells, indicating that IFN-γ-secreting NK cells can induce angiogenesis by promoting enhanced VEGF expression by macrophages.
Connors EC, Chrastil ER, Sánchez J, Merabet LB. Action video game play and transfer of navigation and spatial cognition skills in adolescents who are blind. Front Hum Neurosci 2014;8:133.Abstract
For individuals who are blind, navigating independently in an unfamiliar environment represents a considerable challenge. Inspired by the rising popularity of video games, we have developed a novel approach to train navigation and spatial cognition skills in adolescents who are blind. Audio-based Environment Simulator (AbES) is a software application that allows for the virtual exploration of an existing building set in an action video game metaphor. Using this ludic-based approach to learning, we investigated the ability and efficacy of adolescents with early onset blindness to acquire spatial information gained from the exploration of a target virtual indoor environment. Following game play, participants were assessed on their ability to transfer and mentally manipulate acquired spatial information on a set of navigation tasks carried out in the real environment. Success in transfer of navigation skill performance was markedly high suggesting that interacting with AbES leads to the generation of an accurate spatial mental representation. Furthermore, there was a positive correlation between success in game play and navigation task performance. The role of virtual environments and gaming in the development of mental spatial representations is also discussed. We conclude that this game based learning approach can facilitate the transfer of spatial knowledge and further, can be used by individuals who are blind for the purposes of navigation in real-world environments.
Cho HY, Nasir HH, Sobrin L. Focal laser photocoagulation and photodynamic therapy for lupus choroidopathy. Lupus 2014;23(4):412-6.Abstract
PURPOSE: To describe the results of photodynamic therapy (PDT) and/or focal laser photocoagulation in the treatment of serous retinal detachments secondary to lupus choroidopathy. METHODS: The medical records of three patients with serous detachments secondary to lupus choroidopathy who were treated with PDT and/or focal laser photocoagulation were reviewed. Concomitant systemic medical therapy as well as visual acuity and optical coherence tomography (OCT) outcomes were recorded. RESULTS: All patients received systemic immunosuppressive therapy and had control of their extraocular manifestations prior to PDT and/or laser photocoagulation. One patient received only focal laser photocoagulation and had complete resolution of the subretinal fluid on OCT. The two other patients received a combination of PDT and focal laser treatment. One had improvement in vision and resolution of subretinal fluid on OCT. The second patient, who had longstanding lupus choroidopathy and associated subretinal fluid and macular edema, had only a significant decrease in fluid on OCT but no vision improvement. CONCLUSION: In conjunction with control of systemic disease, PDT and/or focal laser photocoagulation can be successful in resolving subretinal fluid secondary to lupus choroidopathy.
Bowers AR, Ananyev E, Mandel AJ, Goldstein RB, Peli E. Driving with hemianopia: IV. Head scanning and detection at intersections in a simulator. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2014;55(3):1540-8.Abstract
PURPOSE: Using a driving simulator, we examined the effects of homonymous hemianopia (HH) on head scanning behaviors at intersections and evaluated the role of inadequate head scanning in detection failures. METHODS: Fourteen people with complete HH and without cognitive decline or visual neglect and 12 normally sighted (NV) current drivers participated. They drove in an urban environment following predetermined routes, which included multiple intersections. Head scanning behaviors were quantified at T-intersections (n = 32) with a stop or yield sign. Participants also performed a pedestrian detection task. The relationship between head scanning and detection was examined at 10 intersections. RESULTS: For HH drivers, the first scan was more likely to be toward the blind than the seeing hemifield. They also made a greater proportion of head scans overall to the blind side than did the NV drivers to the corresponding side (P = 0.003). However, head scan magnitudes of HH drivers were smaller than those of the NV group (P < 0.001). Drivers with HH had impaired detection of blind-side pedestrians due either to not scanning in the direction of the pedestrian or to an insufficient scan magnitude (left HH detected only 46% and right HH 8% at the extreme left and right of the intersection, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: Drivers with HH demonstrated compensatory head scan patterns, but not scan magnitudes. Inadequate scanning resulted in blind-side detection failures, which might place HH drivers at increased risk for collisions at intersections. Scanning training tailored to specific problem areas identified in this study might be beneficial.
Amparo F, Jin Y, Hamrah P, Schaumberg DA, Dana R. What is the value of incorporating tear osmolarity measurement in assessing patient response to therapy in dry eye disease?. Am J Ophthalmol 2014;157(1):69-77.e2.Abstract
PURPOSE: To evaluate the correlation between changes in tear osmolarity, symptoms, and corneal fluorescein staining in patients with dry eye disease (DED). DESIGN: Retrospective, clinic-based cohort study. METHODS: In this single-institution study, we reviewed the charts of 186 patients with DED from whom we had data on tear osmolarity, symptoms, and corneal fluorescein staining from 2 separate visits. Main outcomes included the correlation of the changes between the 2 visits for tear osmolarity (TearLab system), symptoms (Ocular Surface Disease Index), and corneal fluorescein staining (modified Oxford scheme). For tear osmolarity and corneal fluorescein staining the scores from the eye with highest readings were analyzed. The correlations were repeated on subgroups based on proposed cutoffs for DED severity and on patients' treatment. RESULTS: We found a modest, though statistically significant, correlation between changes in corneal fluorescein staining and symptoms of DED (R = 0.31; P < .001). However, there was no correlation between the recorded change in tear osmolarity and symptoms (R = -0.091; P = .38) or between changes in tear osmolarity and corneal fluorescein staining (R = -0.02; P = .80). This lack of correlation was consistent in all the subgroups studied. A multivariate analysis revealed that changes in corneal fluorescein staining had predictive value on symptom changes, whereas tear osmolarity changes did not. CONCLUSIONS: Changes in tear osmolarity do not correlate significantly with changes in patient symptoms or corneal fluorescein staining in dry eye disease.

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