March 1986
Volume 27, Issue 3
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Articles  |   March 1986
Presumed retinovitreal neovascularization in dystrophic retinas of spontaneously hypertensive rats.
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science March 1986, Vol.27, 346-355. doi:
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      R N Frank, M A Mancini; Presumed retinovitreal neovascularization in dystrophic retinas of spontaneously hypertensive rats.. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 1986;27(3):346-355.

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

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Abstract

The authors have observed abnormal blood vessels, strongly suggestive of neovascular proliferation, arising from the retinal circulation and extending through the inner limiting membrane of the retina into the vitreous in five spontaneously hypertensive (SHR) rats with severe retinal dystrophy. The animals in whom these presumptive retinovitreal new vessels occurred were all 15 mo of age or older. The new vessels frequently demonstrated thinned and, rarely, fenestrated endothelium, abnormal intracellular junctions, increased numbers of endocytic vesicles, bizarre appearing pericytes, and highly abnormal basement membranes, features that have been observed in retinovitreal new vessels in proliferative retinopathies in humans. Unlike such new vessels arising from the human retinal circulation, however, those that we observed in dystrophic rat retinas were usually surrounded by proliferating retinal pigment epithelial cells within the retinal substance. Unlike the vessels, the pigment epithelial cells did not break through the inner limiting membrane of the retina to enter the vitreous. The pigment epithelial cells that made contact with the internal limiting membrane of the retina demonstrated apical and basal plasma membrane specializations that are typical of these cells in their normal anatomical location, while pigment epithelial cells migrating in cords through the neural retina lacked such specializations. This animal model may be of great value in understanding the mechanisms of retinal neovascularization.

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