Regeneration of Cone Outer Segments Induced by CNTF
Secondary cone degeneration in the transgenic rats carrying the S334ter rhodopsin mutation (S334ter-3 rats) starts at the peak of rod degeneration (PD12) and progresses with age. An early sign of cone degeneration is the loss of cone outer segments (COS) distributed in many small patches throughout the retina. Cone cell death occurs about 2 months later. When treated with CNTF (ciliary neurotrophic factor), impaired cones regenerate COS. Sustained delivery of CNTF prevents cones from degeneration and helps to maintain COS and function. These results indicate that cone degeneration is reversible at early stages and support a therapeutic strategy of sustained delivery of CNTF to prevent cone degeneration.
KeywordsCNTF Cone Retinal degeneration Cone outer segments Neuroprotection Regeneration S334ter rat PNA Cone ERG
We thank Dr. Cheryl Craft for anti cone-arrestin antibodies; Dr. Ying Song, Dr. Lian Zhao, and Yun Liu for technical assistance. Supported by Grants from NIH: R01EY015289 (RW), R01EY018586 (RW), R01EY001919 (MML), R01EY006842 (MML), Hope for Vision (RW), the James and Esther King Biomedical Research Program of the State of Florida (YL), the Department of Defense (W81XWH-09-1-0674, RW), and NIH Core Grants P30EY14801, P30EY002162, the Foundation Fighting Blindness (MML), and unrestricted grants from Research to Prevent Blindness, Inc., New York, NY to Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, Beckman Vision Center, and Scheie Eye Institute.
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