June 2015
Volume 56, Issue 7
Free
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2015
High iron diet causes elevation of retinal iron levels and RPE autofluorescence
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Devang Bhoiwala
    College, Albany Medical College, Albany, NY
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Ying Song
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Alyssa Cwanger
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Esther Clark
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Liangliang Zhao
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
    Ophthalmology, The Second Hospital of Jilin University, Jilin, China
  • Chenguang Wang
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
    Ophthalmology, The Second Hospital of Jilin University, Jilin, China
  • Yafeng Li
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Delu Song
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Joshua L Dunaief
    FM Kirby Ctr/Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships Devang Bhoiwala, None; Ying Song, None; Alyssa Cwanger, None; Esther Clark, None; Liangliang Zhao, None; Chenguang Wang, None; Yafeng Li, None; Delu Song, None; Joshua Dunaief, None
  • Footnotes
    Support None
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 2015, Vol.56, 4203. doi:
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    • Get Citation

      Devang Bhoiwala, Ying Song, Alyssa Cwanger, Esther Clark, Liangliang Zhao, Chenguang Wang, Yafeng Li, Delu Song, Joshua L Dunaief; High iron diet causes elevation of retinal iron levels and RPE autofluorescence. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2015;56(7 ):4203.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Purpose: The blood-retinal barrier plays a significant role in shielding the retina from potentially harmful blood components. Since the retina is particularly sensitive to iron levels, it is crucial to understand the impact systemic iron overload has on retinal iron levels.

Methods: Male CD1 strain wild type mice were fed a Harlan Teklad diet with 2% iron carbonyl compared to mice fed the same diet without the carbonyl iron for 3 or 10 months. The retinas were analyzed with immunofluorescence to assess the levels of iron and iron-regulated proteins. mRNA levels of retinal and isolated RPE L-ferritin, transferrin receptor, and oxidative stress markers were measured by qPCR.

Results: H-ferritin and L-ferritin immunoreactivity (which is directly correlated with iron levels) in the neural retina (NR) and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) was increased in the iron-supplemented diet mice compared to normal diet mice. Additionally, there were increased mid-cytoplasmic punctate autofluorescent spots in the RPE in the high iron diet mice when compared to the normal diet mice. Interestingly, antioxidant genes, superoxide dismutase (SOD1, SOD2) mRNAs were significantly decreased in the high iron diet mice.

Conclusions: These findings indicate that the iron absorbed in the diet can increase the level of iron deposition in the NR and RPE. Surprisingly, the oral iron can cross the blood-retinal-barrier, increasing retinal iron levels. Furthermore, the increased RPE autofluorescence suggests lipofuscin deposition in the RPE, which could be harmful over time. Moreover, decreased SOD suggests a compensatory reaction by the RPE to reduce hydrogen peroxide production in order to reduce the harmful affects of the Fenton reaction, in the high iron diet mice.

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