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Don H. Anderson, Gregory S. Hageman, Robert F. Mullins, Maureen Neitz, Jay Neitz, Shiro Ozaki, Klaus T. Preissner, Lincoln V. Johnson; Vitronectin Gene Expression in the Adult Human Retina. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 1999;40(13):3305-3315.
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purpose. To determine whether vitronectin (Vn), a plasma protein and
extracellular matrix molecule that is also a prominent constituent of
drusen, is synthesized by cells in the adult human retina.
methods. The distribution of Vn in the normal adult human retina was examined
using antibodies to circulating plasma Vn and to the multimeric,
heparin-binding form that is most prevalent in extravascular tissues.
Evidence of Vn transcription by retinal cells was analyzed by in situ
hybridization and also by reverse transcription of total RNA derived
from dissociated human or mouse photoreceptors followed by
amplification using polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).
results. Cytoplasmic immunoreactivity for plasma Vn or multimeric Vn was
detected in photoreceptors, in a subpopulation of neurons situated in
the inner retina, and in vitreous hyalocytes. Extracellular labeling
was limited primarily to Bruch’s membrane and the retinal vasculature.
At the transcriptional level, Vn mRNA was localized to both
photoreceptors and ganglion cells by in situ hybridization. The in situ
findings were corroborated by RT-PCR using total RNA from dissociated
mouse or human photoreceptor cells.
conclusions. The results constitute the first evidence for Vn gene expression by
adult neurons in the mammalian central nervous system. The
identification of the photoreceptors as a cellular source of Vn
suggests that these cells have the potential to make a biosynthetic
contribution to the Vn that is found in
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