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Sergio Caballero, Ru Yang, Maria B. Grant, Brahim Chaqour; Selective Blockade of Cytoskeletal Actin Remodeling Reduces Experimental Choroidal Neovascularization. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(5):2490-2496. doi: 10.1167/iovs.10-6351.
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Purpose. The efficacy of the peptide Ac-EEED on reducing cell adhesion and proliferation in vitro and choroidal neovascularization (CNV) in vivo was examined.
Methods. The peptide chimera containing the Ac-EEED sequence was chemically linked to the N terminus of the XMTM delivery peptide from the Erns viral surface protein. Ac-EEED or scrambled control peptide (SCRAM) was added to cultures of vascular smooth muscle cells, pericytes, endothelial cells, and fibroblasts, and adhesion, growth, and matrix production was assessed. Ac-EEED or SCRAM was injected into the vitreous of mice undergoing laser rupture of Bruch's membrane to induce CNV and lesion volume, neovascularization and lesion fibrosis were assessed.
Results. Ac-EEED–induced changes in the morphology of the actin cytoskeleton by inhibiting polymerization of G-actin and disrupting the formation of stress fibers. Pretreatment with Ac-EEED resulted in endothelial cells becoming less responsive to the mitogenic and pro-adhesive effects of VEGF. Ac-EEED treatment in fibroblasts reduced TGF-β–induced fibrosis as assessed by decreased levels of connective tissue growth factor, cysteine-rich 61, collagen I (COL1A2), and collagen III (COL3A1). CNV lesion size and fibrosis were reduced in a concentration-dependent manner by up to 60%.
Conclusions. In vitro studies showed that Ac-EEED affects a broad range of mechanical properties associated with cytoskeletal actin to reduce growth factor effects. The utilization of Ac-EEED in vivo may offer a novel therapeutic strategy by both suppressed neovessel growth and curtailing fibrosis typically associated with the involutional stage of CNV.
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