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Maura A. Crowley, Omar Delgado, Adrian Will-Orrego, Natasha M. Buchanan, Karen Anderson, Bruce D. Jaffee, Thaddeus P. Dryja, Sha-Mei Liao; Induction of Ocular Complement Activation by Inflammatory Stimuli and Intraocular Inhibition of Complement Factor D in Animal Models. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(2):940-951. doi: 10.1167/iovs.17-22605.
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Genome-wide association studies suggest a role for the complement system in age-related macular degeneration (AMD). We characterized ocular complement activation and evaluated a complement factor D (FD) neutralizing antibody.
Mice were treated with toll-like receptor (TLR) ligands, intravitreal injection (IVT), or corneal debridement. Levels of complement proteins and mRNA were measured. A FD neutralizing antibody was administered IVT into eyes of rabbits that were challenged with LPS (lipopolysaccharide) administered intravenously.
Levels of C3 and factor B (FB) mRNA and protein in the eye were increased following intraperitoneal injection of TLR4 ligand LPS. Increased levels of C3 and FB breakdown products were observed in both eye tissues and plasma. Complement activation products were markedly reduced in C3−/− and Cfb−/− mice challenged with LPS. Ocular complement levels were also elevated in mice treated systemically with TLR2 and -3 ligands, injured by IVT injection or corneal debridement, or even in normal aging. IVT administration of a complement FD neutralizing antibody in rabbits inhibited LPS-induced complement activation in the posterior segment of the eye, but not in the anterior segment of the eye or in plasma.
Systemic TLR stimulation and eye tissue injury induced time-dependent alternative complement pathway activation in the eye. Ocular complement levels were also gradually elevated during aging. An anti-FD antibody IVT potently inhibited LPS-induced complement activation in the posterior segment of the eye. This study provides insights into the dynamic profile of ocular complement activation, which is valuable for complement research in eye diseases and for developing complement therapeutics for AMD.
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