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Luis E. Politi, Nora P. Rotstein, Néstor G. Carri; Effect of GDNF on Neuroblast Proliferation and Photoreceptor Survival: Additive Protection with Docosahexaenoic Acid. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2001;42(12):3008-3015.
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purpose. In a previous study, it was reported that docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is
essential to postpone apoptosis and to promote differentiation of rat
retina photoreceptors in vitro. In the current study, the protective
effects of GDNF on photoreceptor cells during development in vitro and
its action when combined with DHA were investigated.
methods. Rat retina neuronal cultures were incubated in a chemically defined
medium, either without photoreceptor survival factors or supplemented
with GDNF, DHA, or GDNF plus DHA. Evolution of survival, apoptosis,
opsin expression, mitochondrial functioning, and cell proliferation
were investigated at different times of development in vitro.
results. Incubation with GDNF selectively increased the number of surviving
photoreceptors, reduced their apoptosis, and augmented opsin
expression. Proliferative cell nuclei antigen (PCNA) determination and
addition of [3H]-thymidine or bromodeoxyuridine showed
that GDNF promoted neuroblast proliferation during the first hours of
development in vitro. The combined addition of GDNF and DHA enhanced
opsin expression and photoreceptor survival in an additive manner. The
advance of photoreceptor apoptosis in cultures without trophic factors
correlated with an increased impairment in mitochondrial functionality.
Addition of GDNF and DHA significantly diminished the loss of
conclusions. These results show that GDNF stimulated the cell cycle progression,
leading to neuroblast proliferation at early stages of development, and
delayed the onset of apoptosis later on, improving differentiation and
acting as a trophic factor for photoreceptors. The combination of GDNF
with DHA had an additive effect both on photoreceptor survival and on
opsin expression. Preservation of mitochondrial function may be
involved in the antiapoptotic effect of both
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