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Carlos A. Garcia, Rolando Barrientes, Jr., Shannon Ugarte, Damaris Ramirez, Rajat Sethi; In Vivo Ozone Exposure Induces Oxidative Stress In The Rat Retina Via Stimulation Of A Tnf-α Mediated Pathway. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(14):4434.
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Oxidative stress plays a role in the pathophysiology of retinal degenerative diseases. Retinal neurons are especially sensitive to pro-oxidants due to their high lipid content and elevated oxygen consumption. Ambient ozone (O3) is a strong oxidant that upon inhalation reaches the retina. The goals of this study are 1) to investigate the effects of in vivo O3 exposure in mediating the apoptotic TNF-α extrinsic pathway and 2) to examine the role of cytokines in the retinas of O3-exposed Long Evans rats.
Age and sex-matched rats were randomly separated into four groups (n=4); one control (clean air) and three O3-exposed groups (0.4 ppm for 4 hours; 1 day, 7 days, and 28 days). Upon completion of the exposures, the O3-exposed and age and sex-matched controls were sacrificed and neural retinal tissue collected for biochemical analysis. The content of the cytokines IL -1β, IL - 10 and TNF-α were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) in retinal homogenates.
The TNF-α content significantly increased (p< 0.001) in the retinas of the 1-day and 7-day ozone-exposed groups as compared to controls, and the IL - 1β levels significantly decreased (p < 0.05) in the 7-day exposed group and 28-day group. Although the levels of IL - 10 increased in the 1-day exposed group, the increase was not statistically significant.
This data provides evidence that in vivo exposure to O3 causes oxidative stress in the mammalian retina, which is manifested by a specific increase in the levels of TNF-α with a concomitant decrease in the pro-inflammatory cytokine IL - 1β and a slight increase in the levels of the anti-inflammatory cytokine, IL -10. This environmental air pollution relevant work provides useful data regarding the effects of ozone air pollution on the retina, especially for the clinically sensitive populations suffering from retinal degenerative diseases.
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