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Jody A. Summers Rada, Lindsey R. Hollaway, Wengtse Lam, Nan Li, Joseph L. Napoli; Identification of RALDH2 as a Visually Regulated Retinoic Acid Synthesizing Enzyme in the Chick Choroid. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(3):1649-1662. doi: 10.1167/iovs.11-8444.
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All-trans-retinoic acid (atRA) has been implicated in the local regulation of scleral proteoglycan synthesis in vivo. The purpose of the present study was to identify the enzymes involved in the synthesis of atRA during visually guided ocular growth, the cells involved in modulation of atRA biosynthesis in the choroid, and the effect of choroid-derived atRA on scleral proteoglycan synthesis.
Myopia was induced in White leghorn chicks by form deprivation for 10 days, followed by up to 15 days of unrestricted vision (recovery). Expression of atRA synthesizing enzymes was evaluated by semiquantitative qRT-PCR, in situ hybridization, and immunohistochemistry. atRA synthesis was measured in organ cultures of isolated choroids using LC-tandem MS quantification. Scleral proteoglycan synthesis was measured in vitro by the incorporation of 35SO4 in CPC-precipitable glycosaminoglycans.
RALDH2 was the predominant RALDH transcript in the choroid (>100-fold that of RALDH3). RALDH2 mRNA was elevated after 12 and 24 hours of recovery (60% and 188%, respectively; P < 0.01). The atRA concentration was significantly higher in cultures of choroids from 24-hour to 15-day recovering eyes than in paired controls (∼195%; P < 0.01). Choroid conditioned medium from recovering choroids inhibited proteoglycan synthesis to 43% of controls (P < 0.02, paired t-test; n = 16) and produced a relative inhibition corresponding to a RA concentration of 7.20 × 10−8 M.
The results of this study suggest that RALDH2 is the major retinal dehydrogenase in the chick choroid and is responsible for increased atRA synthesis in response to myopic defocus.
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