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Pei Ying Lee, Zheng He, Vickie Hoi Ying Wong, Jonathan G Crowston, Bang V Bui; The effect of ageing on the recovery of retinal function and structure following intraocular pressure elevation in mice. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2019;60(9):6135.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To investigate the effect of ageing on the capacity of the eye to cope with acute intraocular pressure (IOP) elevation in mice
IOP was elevated to 50 mmHg for 30 minutes in anaesthetised (ketamine/xylazine) 3- and 12-month old (3mo and 12mo) C57Bl/6 mice by infusing Hanks’ Balance Salt Solution through a glass micropipette (~50μm tip) inserted into the anterior chamber of one randomly selected eye. The contralateral eye served as an untreated control. Retinal function was assessed using electroretinogram to provide an index of the health of the major cell classes in the eye. Retinal structure was assessed using optical coherence tomography (OCT) which returns thickness for a range of retinal layers. Responses were collected one week prior to and at 3 (n=13 3mo, n=11 12mo), 7 (n=13 3mo, n=10 12mo), 14 (n=10 3mo, n=11 12mo) or 28 (n=11 3mo, n=11 12mo) days after IOP elevation. Responses in the high IOP eye were expressed relative (%) to their contralateral control eye (mean±SEM). As retinal ganglion cell (RGC) responses are influenced by input from the outer retina, we expressed the functional recovery of RGC as the % difference between relative RGC (output cells) and photoreceptor (input cells) function. The effect of age on RGC functional recovery and retinal structural changes at the various recovery time points was analysed using two-way ANOVA.
In 3-month old eyes, 3 days after IOP elevation, RGC function was -37.3±7.0% worse than expected from photoreceptoral input. By 7 days after IOP elevation, RGC responses were similar to photoreceptor responses (-5.7±7.2%) and remained so at 14 (-9.7±6.0%) and 28 (15.6±16.4%) days of recovery. In contrast, 12-month old eyes showed slower recovery. RGC responses were worse than expected from photoreceptoral responses at 3 (-58.1±6.1%) and 7 (-34.8±10.5%) days. Only at 14 (-9.4±10.0%) and 28 (1.9±13.1%) days had RGC responses returned to levels comparable with photoreceptoral responses in 12-month old eyes. Two-way ANOVA confirmed a significant age effect in the functional recovery (p<0.05). There was, however, no significant differences in retinal layers measured using OCT with age.
RGC function was more affected by acute IOP elevation than photoreceptoral responses. Ageing slowed down the functional recovery of RGC following an acute IOP stressor but appears to have little effect on retinal structure.
This abstract was presented at the 2019 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Vancouver, Canada, April 28 - May 2, 2019.
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