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Justin A. Saunders, Leon Rachel, Matheson Harris, Jason Huber, Charles Rosen, Jennifer Sivak; Estrogenic Effects on Rat Lacrimal Gland Function. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(14):621.
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1. Determine estrogenic effects on tear production & breakup time. 2. Determine whether the rat lacrimal gland contains progesterone/estrogen sensitive receptors and the effect of estrogen..
24 female Sprague-Dawlet rats, aged 15 months divided into two treatment arms. 1. 12 rats received subQ placebo pellet (Intact) 2. 12 rats received subQ pellet containing 1.5 mg of 17 beta-estradiol in a 90-day release matrix (E2) Both groups received treatment until 18 months of age. Serum estrogen level was measured prior to treatment and at 18 months of age using [I125] radioimmunoassay. Rats underwent induction with isoflurane anesthesia for 3 mins. Tear Volume Assessment: Modified Schirmer's filter paper strips placed in upper palpebral fissure for 5 mins. After 5 mins, test strips removed and tear height recorded. Tear Breakup Time: 1.0 microliter of fluorescein placed on the corneal surface followed by 3 manual blinks. Time to first break in tear film measured. Procedure was then repeated 3 times. Exenteration was performed on all 24 subjects. The orbital lacrimal gland was segmented and processed using H+E staining techniques as well as estrogen/progesterone sensitive histochemical processing.
1. Rats treated with placebo pellets had signficantly higher tear volume compared with estrogen-treated rats (one-way ANOVA with Tukey's post hoc analysis).2. Time to first breakup of tear film was significantly higher in rats treated with placebo pellets compared with those receiving estrogen (one-way ANOVA with Tukey's post hoc analysis).
Estrogen supplementation leads to reduced tear volume and more rapid tear breakup time compared with age-matched controls.By using aged female rats treated with estrogen for 3 months, we created a model of keratoconjunctivitis sicca arising from hormone replacement therapy.
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