Endothelin Receptors: Do They Have a Role in Retinal Degeneration?
Although endothelins (ETs) were originally discovered as potent vasoconstrictors secreted by the endothelium (Yanagisawa et al., 1988), it has become evident that they also fulfill important roles in the nervous system (Schinelli, 2006). ETs are a family of 21-amino-acid peptides with three isoforms, ET-1, ET-2 and ET-3. ET-1 and ET-3 are present in most ocular structures. They are present in most regions of the anterior segment and in blood vessels of the choroid and the sclera (Chakrabarti and Sima, 1997). Precursor mRNAs of the three endothelins have been detected in the retina (Chakrabarti et al., 1998; Rattner and Nathans, 2005). ET-1 and ET-3 precursor mRNA appear in several retinal cell phenotypes (Ripodas et al., 2001), but the largest protein concentration appears in astrocytes (Torbidoni et al., 2005).
KeywordsOptic Nerve Retinal Pigment Epithelium Optic Nerve Head Amacrine Cell Ganglion Cell Layer
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