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Jeffrey W Kiel, Anthony G Comuzzie, Daniel J Mojica, Carrie A Cooke, Jeong-Hyeon Sohn, Denise Armiger-George; OCT evaluation of retinal lesions in spontaneously hyperglycemic baboons. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2016;57(12):83.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To test the hypothesis that spontaneous, long-term hyperglycemia in the baboon is associated with retinal lesions similar to human diabetic retinopathy.
Twenty baboons (8M/12F, age 17.7 ± 4.1 yrs, 24.9 ± 9.5 kg) from the Southwest National Primate Center colony were identified from longitudinal health checks as being long-term hyperglycemic (HbA1c elevated for 8.8 ± 2.7 yrs). None of the animals had diet or drug induced hyperglycemia. Under ketamine sedation, each animal underwent fundus imaging of both eyes with a hand-held OCT device (Bioptigen Envisu R2210, Morrisville, NC). Analysis of the composite volume-intensity projection and each b-scan was performed manually offline (InVivoVue Reader, Bioptigen, Morrisville, NC) to identify retinal lesions.
Retinal lesions were present in nineteen of the twenty baboons examined. The b-scan appearance of the lesions was indicative of diffuse retinal edema, microaneurysms, epiretinal membranes, and neovasculatization similar to diabetic retinopathy. Also found were lesions similar to drusen, pseudodrusen and pigment epithelial detachments seen in age-related macular degeneration. The animals with the most lesions were older (>20 yrs) and had longer histories of elevated HbA1c (>10 yrs).
The results support the hypothesis that spontaneous, long-term hyperglycemia in the baboon is associated with lesions similar in appearance to those in humans with diabetic retinopathy. The unanticipated lesions indicative of age-related macular degeneration are likely due to the older ages of the animals examined. Given these results and the genetic similarity between baboons and humans, we conclude that the baboon is well suited for translational eye research and warrants further study.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2016 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Seattle, Wash., May 1-5, 2016.
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