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J.–M. Ramirez, J.J. Salazar, A.I. Ramirez, B. Rojas, R. De Hoz, M. Villegas–Perez, S. Mayor–Torroglosa, M. Salinas, M. Vidal–Sanz, A. Triviño; Morphometric Analysis of the Retinal Astroglia in an Ocular Hypertension Model . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2005;46(13):1318.
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Purpose: To study the effects of chronic ocular hypertension on astrocytes in adult rat retinas. Methods: The intraocular pressure of the left eye in adult Sprague–Dawley rats was chronically elevated by laser photocoagulation (wavelength 532nm, power 500mW, duration 0.25 seconds, spot diameter 100 mm) of the limbus and most of the episcleral veins. Intraocular pressure in both eyes was measured with a Tono–Pen prior to and 1 and 2 weeks after lasering. Retinal whole–mounts were processed by immunohistochemistry (anti–GFAP). The retinal area occupied by astrocytes was determined and analyzed statistically. Results: In the control eyes the star–shaped astrocytes were distributed throughout the retina, forming a network in the nerve fiber layer. The number of astrocytes in the glaucomatous eyes decreased overall. These cells decreased towards the retinal periphery and the decrease was statistically significant. Also, the astrocyes associated with the blood vessels showed higher immunoreactivity that in the controls. Additionally, the Müller cells in these retinas exhibited intense GFAP immunoreactivity. Conclusions: Chronic elevation of the intraocular pressure resulted in retinal ischemia 3 weeks later, which induced hyperreactivity of the retinal macroglia and posterior subsequent loss of astrocytes. These alterations of the glial cells could have induced axonal degeneration.
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