June 2021
Volume 62, Issue 8
Open Access
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2021
Selective stimulation of the optic nerve head with blue light increases vitreal dopamine levels in rabbits
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Tim Schilling
    Dopavision GmbH, Germany
  • Carlos Carpena Torres
    Department of Optometry and Vision, Faculty of Optics and Optometry, University Complutense of Madrid, Spain
  • Nikita Wong
    Dopavision GmbH, Germany
  • Hamed Bahmani
    Dopavision GmbH, Germany
    Physiology of Cognitive Processes, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Germany
  • Fernando Huete
    Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Optics and Optometry, University Complutense of Madrid, Spain
  • Gonzalo Carracedo
    Department of Optometry and Vision, Faculty of Optics and Optometry, University Complutense of Madrid, Spain
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships   Tim Schilling, Dopavision GmbH (E); Carlos Carpena Torres, None; Nikita Wong, Dopavision GmbH (E); Hamed Bahmani, Dopavision GmbH (E), Dopavision GmbH (P), Dopavision GmbH (F), Dopavision GmbH (I); Fernando Huete, None; Gonzalo Carracedo, None
  • Footnotes
    Support  Industrie-in-Klinik-Plattform Program BMBF, Germany (FKZ: 13GW0256)
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 2021, Vol.62, 1385. doi:
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      Tim Schilling, Carlos Carpena Torres, Nikita Wong, Hamed Bahmani, Fernando Huete, Gonzalo Carracedo; Selective stimulation of the optic nerve head with blue light increases vitreal dopamine levels in rabbits. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2021;62(8):1385.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Purpose : There is growing evidence that intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) modulate retinal activity. It has been demonstrated that selective stimulation of the optic nerve head with blue light (BL) can activate the melanopsin-containing ipRGCs axons located there. Stimulation of ipRGC axons also improves contrast sensitivity and alters retinal electrical activity, which may indirectly reflect an increase in retinal dopamine release. Retrograde signalling from ipRGCs to dopaminergic amacrine cells can influence the retinal dopaminergic system. This study aimed to directly investigate any change in dopamine release as a result of ipRGC activation. It was hypothesized that dopamine levels would be elevated after stimulation of the optic nerve head with BL.

Methods : Adult male New Zealand rabbits were stimulated for one and ten minutes with and without BL, being included five rabbits in each group. With a self-constructed stereotactic system, it was able to specifically stimulate the optic nerve head with BL (peak 470 nm) in rabbits’ eyes. The BL stimulus was delivered by an optical fiber of 200 µm diameter inserted into the globe and positioned over the optic nerve head in the experimental eye only. In the control condition with no light, the optical fiber was inserted without light stimulation. The concentration of dopamine in the tears, aqueous humor, vitreous humor, and retina was measured using high-performance liquid chromatography. After normal distribution analysis, statistical comparisons were conducted between the contralateral eye and the experimental eye after stimulation using paired Student’s t-tests, being considered p < 0.05 as statistical significance.

Results : No significant difference in absolute dopamine levels between eyes was found in the tears, aqueous humor, or retina (p > 0.05). In the vitreous humor, dopamine concentration was significantly higher in the experimental eye compared to the contralateral eye after BL stimulation (p < 0.05).

Conclusions : These results are consistent with research that suggests vitreal content is a better measure of the rate of retinal dopamine release than retinal dopamine levels. This is the first direct evidence that activation of melanopsin in the axons of ipRGCs at the head of the optic nerve results in measurable changes in dopamine concentration in the eye.

This is a 2021 ARVO Annual Meeting abstract.

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