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Nigel L. Barnett, Matthew J. Brazel, David V. Pow; Longitudinal Evaluation of Spontaneous Haemorrhages in the Rat Retina and AMD-like Lesions. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(14):940.
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To evaluate the long-term consequences of retinal haemorrhage in the young pigmented rat.
A spontaneous model of retinal haemorrhage which was discovered in this laboratory was evaluated longitudinally by means of fundus photography. Final pathology was evaluated histologically and by immunocytochemistry.
We demonstrate bleeding in the eyes of all rats examined (n=95). Fundus photographs (see image) revealed that bleeding commenced at around 2 weeks of age and active bleeding appeared to cease at around 6 weeks of age. Cells of the monocyte lineage including macrophages were subsequently observed at the sites of bleeding, and haemosiderin-containing macrophages persisted for at least 12 months at such sites. Photoreceptor degeneration was observed at approximately 9 months post-haemorrhage, with subsequent anomalies in vascularization and glial cell reactivity.
Haemorrhage in the retina leads to a slow degenerative phenotype with features that are comparable to aspects of AMD. We suggest that activation of the clotting cascade, which co-activates the complement cascade, may be an initiating factor in the degenerative process in this model, and possibly in human AMD.
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