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Marita P Feldkaemper, Frank Schaeffel; Changes in mRNA expression of Endothelial Growth Factor A, C, D and Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor 1, 2, 3 during induction of deprivation myopia in chickens. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(13):3594.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
It was previously reported that the vascular epithelial growth factor inhibitor Bevacizumab can slow the development of deprivation myopia in chickens and suppress choroidal thickening that normally occurs during recovery from deprivation myopia (Mathis and Schaeffel, ARVO 2013). Furthermore, Sheng, Zhu and Wallman (ARVO 2012) found that VEGF isoform V165 can transiently thin the choroid in chickens. We have further studied the role of VEGF in myopia by measuring the choroidal expression of different VEGF isoforms and their receptors, both after long-term deprivation and during recovery from myopia.
7 days old White Leghorn chicks were treated with (a) diffusers for 8 days on both eyes but diffusers were removed on one eye one hour before choroidal tissue analysis, (b) no treatment except for that one eye was occluded 1 hour before tissue analysis, (c) unilateral diffuser treatment for 16 days, (d) unilateral diffuser treatment for 15 days followed by removal of a diffuser for one day (n= 6 chicks in groups a-d). Semi-quantitative real-time PCR was used to quantify mRNA levels of VEGFA (transcript variant 1 and 2), VEGFC, VEGFD, VEGFR1, VEGFR2 and VEGFR3. Beta-actin and HPRT served as reference genes.
Most mRNA levels of the VEGF isoforms were not changed during deprivation myopia. Only VEGFD mRNA was significnatly up-regulated after 16 days of diffuser wear with a 46% increase in normalized mRNA expression (paired t-test, p=0.02). Neither recovery for 1 hour or of 1 day had any effect of the mRNA expression of the various VEGF genes.
Changes in choroidal mRNA expression levels (VEGF D) were evident only after long-term treatment of the chickens with diffusers. This growth factor might therefore either play a role in the maintainance of the myopic state or its induction is related to early degenerative processes in high myopia.
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