Aim: To assess the role of clusterin in retinal vascular development and in free radical damage in vivo and in vitro.
Methods: The expression of clusterin, von Willebrand factor (vWF), flk-1, heat shock protein 27 (Hsp27), heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) was examined in the retinas from developing mice and oxygen-induced retinopathy (OIR) mice by immunofluorescence staining and Western blot analysis. Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)-pretreated human retinal endothelial cells (HRECs) and astrocytes were cultured in the presence or absence of exogenous clusterin, and then the cell viability was measured using the MTT assay and DAPI staining.
Results: Clusterin was expressed mainly in the inner retina and colocalized with vWF, an endothelial cell marker. During mouse developmental process, the clusterin expression was decreased, which was similar to the expression of flk-1, vWF, or Hsp27. Furthermore, in the OIR model, clusterin expression changed similar to vWF expression pattern as well as Hsp27. The expression of clusterin increased under hypoxic conditions in HREC or astrocytes and treatment of clusterin to H2O2-pretreated HREC or astrocytes protected from apoptotic cell death.
Conclustions: These results suggest that clusterin is associated with protection from apoptotic retinal cell death in the retinal development and in free radical damage.
- vessel development
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