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Sample records for cat retinal ganglion

  1. Adaptation and dynamics of cat retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Enroth-Cugell, Christina; Shapley, R. M.

    1973-01-01

    1. The impulse/quantum (I/Q) ratio was measured as a function of background illumination for rod-dominated, pure central, linear square-wave responses of retinal ganglion cells in the cat. 2. The I/Q ratio was constant at low backgrounds (dark adapted state) and inversely proportional to the 0·9 power of the background at high backgrounds (the light adapted state). There was an abrupt transition from the dark-adapted state to the light-adapted state. 3. It was possible to define the adaptation level at a particular background as the ratio (I/Q ratio at that background)/(dark adapted I/Q ratio). 4. The time course of the square-wave response was correlated with the adaptation level. The response was sustained in the dark-adapted state, partially transient at the transition level, and progressively more transient the lower the impulse/quantum ratio of the ganglion cell became. This was true both for on-centre and off-centre cells. 5. The frequency response of the central response mechanism at different adaptation levels was measured. It was a low-pass characteristic in the dark-adapted state and became progressively more of a bandpass characteristic as the cell became more light-adapted. 6. The rapidity of onset of adaptation was measured with a time-varying adapting light. The impulse/quantum ratio is reset within 100 msec of the onset of the conditioning light, and is kept at the new value throughout the time the conditioning light is on. 7. These results can be explained by a nonlinear feedback model. In the model, it is postulated that the exponential function of the horizontal cell potential controls transmission from rods to bipolars. This model has an abrupt transition from dark- to light-adapted states, and its response dynamics are correlated with adaptation level. PMID:4747229

  2. Three factors limiting the reliable detection of light by retinal ganglion cells of the cat

    PubMed Central

    Barlow, H. B.; Levick, W. R.

    1969-01-01

    1. Responses of cat retinal ganglion cells have been examined with a view to specifying the characteristics that limit the detection of light stimuli. 2. Threshold is defined as the weakest stimulus that can be reliably detected by examination of the output from a retinal ganglion cell; it depends upon (a) the quantum/spike ratio, which is the mean number of additional quantal absorptions required to produce an additional impulse, (b) the temporal course of the response, which determines the time interval within which the maintained discharge is modified, and (c) the statistical distribution of the number of impulses that occur in this time interval in the absence of the stimulus. 3. The quantum/spike ratio changes greatly when adapting luminance is changed, and this is the predominant factor accounting for changes in increment threshold. 4. The time course of the response changes with adaptation level and area of the stimulus. This may account for the changes in temporal integration that occur in analogous psychophysical experiments. 5. Changes in the irregularity of the maintained discharge also affect the threshold of single ganglion cells. This is only a minor factor in the conditions of most of our experiments, but it may be important when unstabilized images and non-equilibrium adaptation conditions are encountered. PMID:5761942

  3. Responses of cat retinal ganglion cells to brief flashes of light

    PubMed Central

    Levick, W. R.; Zacks, J. L.

    1970-01-01

    1. The responses of cat retinal ganglion cells to brief flashes of light have been illustrated and described with a view to providing material for comparison with psychophysical experiments in the scotopic (rod-dominated) range of performance. 2. There is a minimum response duration of 50-70 msec no matter how brief the flash is made. This duration is reached with stimuli lasting 32 msec or shorter. 3. Reducing the background illumination obviously increases the latency of responses to stimuli at 4 times threshold intensity (about 10 msec increment per log. unit decrement) but has no obvious effect on the minimum response duration. 4. The relation between intensity and duration of a flash for threshold responses closely resembles that in human psychophysical experiments. The Bunsen—Roscoe law is applicable for flash durations up to 64 msec. 5. If equal amounts of energy are delivered in the form of a pair of flashes of varying separation rather than by rectangular pulses, the shape of the response changes more abruptly with the temporal factor. 6. Non-linear performance is apparent for stimuli as weak as 4 times threshold. 7. A method is developed for quantitative analysis of individual responses. It is based upon cross-correlation of the train of impulses with a Gaussian smoothing function and represents local impulse frequency as a smooth function of time. The method also improves the signal-to-noise ratio of post-stimulus time-histograms of the sum of many responses. 8. The measurement of variability of individual responses is the main result of the method; its magnitude indicates that it is a significant new factor limiting temporal resolution with suprathreshold stimuli. PMID:5498512

  4. A new intraretinal recording system with multiple-barreled electrodes for pharmacological studies on cat retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Takao, M; Wang1, Y; Miyoshi, T; Fujita, I; Fukuda, Y

    2000-04-01

    To overcome technical difficulties associated with in vivo intraretinal recordings of cat retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) with multiple-barreled electrodes, we developed a new guide-trocar system that consisted of a small-diameter and large-diameter pipes. We also improved the method to construct tungsten-in-glass multiple-barreled electrodes suitable for intraretinal recording from RGCs. Only the small-diameter pipe was inserted into the eye ball through the sclera, through which only the taper part of a multiple-barreled electrode pass. The large-diameter pipe stably held the electrode at its trunk and remained outside the eye ball. Insertion of only the small-diameter pipe minimized damages in the eye ball and prevented the eye ball movements while positioning the electrode. The system allowed us to keep the recordings stable for more than 1 h. Iontophoretically applied L-glutamate successfully activated RGCs of both X and Y types in the cat retina. PMID:10771079

  5. Protective Effect of ALA in Crushed Optic Nerve Cat Retinal Ganglion Cells Using a New Marker RBPMS

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yanling; Wang, Wenyao; Liu, Jessica; Huang, Xin; Liu, Ruixing; Xia, Huika; Brecha, Nicholas C.; Pu, Mingliang; Gao, Jie

    2016-01-01

    In this study we first sought to determine whether RNA-binding protein with multiple splicing (RBPMS) can serve as a specific marker for cat retina ganglion cells (RGCs) using retrograde labeling and immunohistochemistry staining. RBPM was then used as an RGC marker to study RGC survival after optic nerve crush (ONC) and alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) treatment in cats. ALA treatment yielded a peak density of RBPMS-alpha cells within the peak isodensity zone (>60/mm2) which did not differ from ONC retinas. The area within the zone was significantly enlarged (control: 2.3%, ONC: 0.06%, ONC+ALA: 0.1%). As for the 10-21/mm2 zone, ALA treatment resulted in a significant increase in area (control: 34.5%, ONC: 12.1%, ONC+ALA: 35.9%). ALA can alleviate crush-induced RGC injury. PMID:27504635

  6. [Intrinsically Photosensitive Retinal Ganglion Cells].

    PubMed

    Skorkovská, K; Skorkovská, Š

    2015-06-01

    Recently discovered intrinsically photosensitive melanopsin-containing retinal ganglion cells contribute to circadian photoentrainment and pupillary constriction; recent works have also brought new evidence for their accessory role in the visual system in humans. Pupil light reaction driven by individual photoreceptors can be isolated by means of the so called chromatic pupillography. The use of chromatic stimuli to elicit different pupillary responses may become an objective clinical pupil test in the detection of retinal diseases and in assessing new therapeutic approaches particularly in hereditary retinal degenerations like retinitis pigmentosa. In advanced stages of disease, the pupil light reaction is even more sensitive than standard electroretinography for detecting residual levels of photoreceptor activity. This review summarizes current knowledge on intrinsically photosensitive retinal cells and highlights its possible implications for clinical practice. PMID:26201360

  7. Topography of ganglion cell production in the cat's retina

    SciTech Connect

    Walsh, C.; Polley, E.H.

    1985-03-01

    The ganglion cells of the cat's retina form several classes distinguishable in terms of soma size, axon diameter, dendritic morphology, physiological properties, and central connections. Labeling with (/sup 3/H)thymidine shows that the ganglion cells which survive in the adult are produced as several temporally shifted, overlapping waves: medium-sized cells are produced before large cells, whereas the smallest ganglion cells are produced throughout the period of ganglion cell generation. Large cells and medium-sized cells show the same distinctive pattern of production, forming rough spirals around the area centralis. The oldest cells tend to lie superior and nasal to the area centralis, whereas cells in the inferior nasal retina and inferior temporal retina are, in general, progressively younger. Within each retinal quadrant, cells nearer the area centralis tend to be older than cells in the periphery, but there is substantial overlap. The retinal raphe divides the superior temporal quadrant into two zones with different patterns of cell addition. Superior temporal retina near the vertical meridian adds cells only slightly later than superior nasal retina, whereas superior temporal retina near the horizontal meridian adds cells very late, contemporaneously with inferior temporal retina. The broader wave of production of smaller ganglion cells seems to follow this same spiral pattern at its beginning and end. The presence of the area centralis as a nodal point about which ganglion cell production in the retinal quadrants pivots suggests that the area centralis is already an important retinal landmark even at the earliest stages of retinal development.

  8. Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Do, Michael Tri Hoang; Yau, King-Wai

    2010-10-01

    Life on earth is subject to alternating cycles of day and night imposed by the rotation of the earth. Consequently, living things have evolved photodetective systems to synchronize their physiology and behavior with the external light-dark cycle. This form of photodetection is unlike the familiar "image vision," in that the basic information is light or darkness over time, independent of spatial patterns. "Nonimage" vision is probably far more ancient than image vision and is widespread in living species. For mammals, it has long been assumed that the photoreceptors for nonimage vision are also the textbook rods and cones. However, recent years have witnessed the discovery of a small population of retinal ganglion cells in the mammalian eye that express a unique visual pigment called melanopsin. These ganglion cells are intrinsically photosensitive and drive a variety of nonimage visual functions. In addition to being photoreceptors themselves, they also constitute the major conduit for rod and cone signals to the brain for nonimage visual functions such as circadian photoentrainment and the pupillary light reflex. Here we review what is known about these novel mammalian photoreceptors. PMID:20959623

  9. Molecular biology of retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed Central

    Xiang, M; Zhou, H; Nathans, J

    1996-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cells are the output neurons that encode and transmit information from the eye to the brain. Their diverse physiologic and anatomic properties have been intensively studied and appear to account well for a number of psychophysical phenomena such as lateral inhibition and chromatic opponency. In this paper, we summarize our current view of retinal ganglion cell properties and pose a number of questions regarding underlying molecular mechanisms. As an example of one approach to understanding molecular mechanisms, we describe recent work on several POU domain transcription factors that are expressed in subsets of retinal ganglion cells and that appear to be involved in ganglion cell development. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 6 PMID:8570601

  10. Changes in ganglion cells during retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Saha, Susmita; Greferath, Ursula; Vessey, Kirstan A; Grayden, David B; Burkitt, Anthony N; Fletcher, Erica L

    2016-08-01

    Inherited retinal degeneration such as retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is associated with photoreceptor loss and concomitant morphological and functional changes in the inner retina. It is not known whether these changes are associated with changes in the density and distribution of synaptic inputs to retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). We quantified changes in ganglion cell density in rd1 and age-matched C57BL/6J-(wildtype, WT) mice using the immunocytochemical marker, RBPMS. Our data revealed that following complete loss of photoreceptors, (∼3months of age), there was a reduction in ganglion cell density in the peripheral retina. We next examined changes in synaptic inputs to A type ganglion cells by performing double labeling experiments in mice with the ganglion cell reporter lines, rd1-Thy1 and age-matched wildtype-Thy1. Ribbon synapses were identified by co-labelling with CtBP2 (RIBEYE) and conventional synapses with the clustering molecule, gephyrin. ON RGCs showed a significant reduction in RIBEYE-immunoreactive synapse density while OFF RGCs showed a significant reduction in the gephyrin-immmunoreactive synapse density. Distribution patterns of both synaptic markers across the dendritic trees of RGCs were unchanged. The change in synaptic inputs to RGCs was associated with a reduction in the number of immunolabeled rod bipolar and ON cone bipolar cells. These results suggest that functional changes reported in ganglion cells during retinal degeneration could be attributed to loss of synaptic inputs. PMID:27132232

  11. Acquired retinal folds in the cat.

    PubMed

    MacMillan, A D

    1976-06-01

    Retinal folds were found in 5 cats. The apparent cause of the folding was varied: in 1 cat the folds appeared after a localized retinal detachment; in 2 cats the condition accompanied other intraocular abnormalities associated with feline infectious peritonitis; 1 cat had active keratitis, and the retinal changes were thought to have been injury related; and 1 cat, bilaterally affected, had chronic glomerulonephritis. PMID:945253

  12. Concerted Signaling by Retinal Ganglion Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meister, Markus; Lagnado, Leon; Baylor, Denis A.

    1995-11-01

    To analyze the rules that govern communication between eye and brain, visual responses were recorded from an intact salamander retina. Parallel observation of many retinal ganglion cells with a microelectrode array showed that nearby neurons often fired synchronously, with spike delays of less than 10 milliseconds. The frequency of such synchronous spikes exceeded the correlation expected from a shared visual stimulus up to 20-fold. Synchronous firing persisted under a variety of visual stimuli and accounted for the majority of action potentials recorded. Analysis of receptive fields showed that concerted spikes encoded information not carried by individual cells; they may represent symbols in a multineuronal code for vision.

  13. Retinal Intrinsic Optical Signals in a Cat Model of Primary Congenital Glaucoma

    PubMed Central

    Schallek, Jesse B.; McLellan, Gillian J.; Viswanathan, Suresh; Ts'o, Daniel Y.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose. To examine the impact of reduced inner retinal function and breed on intrinsic optical signals in cats. Methods. Retinal intrinsic optical signals were recorded from anesthetized cats with a modified fundus camera. Near infrared light (NIR, 700–900 nm) was used to illuminate the retina while a charge-coupled device (CCD) camera captured the NIR reflectance of the retina. Visible stimuli (540 nm) evoked patterned changes in NIR retinal reflectance. NIR intrinsic signals were compared across three subject groups: two Siamese cats with primary congenital glaucoma (PCG), a control Siamese cat without glaucoma, and a control group of seven normally pigmented cats. Intraocular pressure (IOP), pattern electroretinogram, and optical coherence tomography measurements were evaluated to confirm the inner retinal deficit in PCG cats. Results. Stimulus-evoked, NIR retinal reflectance signals were observed in PCG cats despite severe degeneration of the nerve fiber layer and inner retinal function. The time course, spectral dependence, and spatial profile of signals imaged in PCG cats were similar to signals measured from normal and Siamese control cats. Conclusions. Despite increased IOP, reduced nerve fiber layer thickness and ganglion cell function, intrinsic optical signals persist in cats affected with PCG. The mechanisms giving rise to intrinsic signals remain despite inner retinal damage. Signal strength was reduced in all Siamese cats compared to controls, suggesting that reduced intrinsic signals in PCG cats represent a difference between breeds rather than loss of ganglion cells. These results corroborated previous findings that retinal ganglion cells are not the dominant source of intrinsic optical signals of the retina. PMID:22395886

  14. Polymodal Sensory Integration in Retinal Ganglion Cells.

    PubMed

    Križaj, David

    2016-01-01

    An animal's ability to perceive the external world is conditioned by its capacity to extract and encode specific features of the visual image. The output of the vertebrate retina is not a simple representation of the 2D visual map generated by photon absorptions in the photoreceptor layer. Rather, spatial, temporal, direction selectivity and color "dimensions" of the original image are distributed in the form of parallel output channels mediated by distinct retinal ganglion cell (RGC) populations. We propose that visual information transmitted to the brain includes additional, light-independent, inputs that reflect the functional states of the retina, anterior eye and the body. These may include the local ion microenvironment, glial metabolism and systemic parameters such as intraocular pressure, temperature and immune activation which act on ion channels that are intrinsic to RGCs. We particularly focus on light-independent mechanical inputs that are associated with physical impact, cell swelling and intraocular pressure as excessive mechanical stimuli lead to the counterintuitive experience of "pressure phosphenes" and/or debilitating blinding disease such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. We point at recently discovered retinal mechanosensitive ion channels as examples through which molecular physiology brings together Greek phenomenology, modern neuroscience and medicine. Thus, RGC output represents a unified picture of the embodied context within which vision takes place. PMID:26427477

  15. Frequency Responses of Rat Retinal Ganglion Cells

    PubMed Central

    Cloherty, Shaun L.; Hung, Yu-Shan; Kameneva, Tatiana; Ibbotson, Michael R.

    2016-01-01

    There are 15–20 different types of retinal ganglion cells (RGC) in the mammalian retina, each encoding different aspects of the visual scene. The mechanism by which post-synaptic signals from the retinal network generate spikes is determined by each cell’s intrinsic electrical properties. Here we investigate the frequency responses of morphologically identified rat RGCs using intracellular injection of sinusoidal current waveforms, to assess their intrinsic capabilities with minimal contributions from the retinal network. Recorded cells were classified according to their morphological characteristics (A, B, C or D-type) and their stratification (inner (i), outer (o) or bistratified) in the inner plexiform layer (IPL). Most cell types had low- or band-pass frequency responses. A2, C1 and C4o cells were band-pass with peaks of 15–30 Hz and low-pass cutoffs above 56 Hz (A2 cells) and ~42 Hz (C1 and C4o cells). A1 and C2i/o cells were low-pass with peaks of 10–15 Hz (cutoffs 19–25 Hz). Bistratified D1 and D2 cells were also low-pass with peaks of 5–10 Hz (cutoffs ~16 Hz). The least responsive cells were the B2 and C3 types (peaks: 2–5 Hz, cutoffs: 8–11 Hz). We found no difference between cells stratifying in the inner and outer IPL (i.e., ON and OFF cells) or between cells with large and small somas or dendritic fields. Intrinsic physiological properties (input resistance, spike width and sag) had little impact on frequency response at low frequencies, but account for 30–40% of response variability at frequencies >30 Hz. PMID:27341669

  16. Encoding visual information in retinal ganglion cells with prosthetic stimulation.

    PubMed

    Freeman, Daniel K; Rizzo, Joseph F; Fried, Shelley I

    2011-06-01

    Retinal prostheses aim to restore functional vision to those blinded by outer retinal diseases using electric stimulation of surviving retinal neurons. The ability to replicate the spatiotemporal pattern of ganglion cell spike trains present under normal viewing conditions is presumably an important factor for restoring high-quality vision. In order to replicate such activity with a retinal prosthesis, it is important to consider both how visual information is encoded in ganglion cell spike trains, and how retinal neurons respond to electric stimulation. The goal of the current review is to bring together these two concepts in order to guide the development of more effective stimulation strategies. We review the experiments to date that have studied how retinal neurons respond to electric stimulation and discuss these findings in the context of known retinal signaling strategies. The results from such in vitro studies reveal the advantages and disadvantages of activating the ganglion cell directly with the electric stimulus (direct activation) as compared to activation of neurons that are presynaptic to the ganglion cell (indirect activation). While direct activation allows high temporal but low spatial resolution, indirect activation yields improved spatial resolution but poor temporal resolution. Finally, we use knowledge gained from in vitro experiments to infer the patterns of elicited activity in ongoing human trials, providing insights into some of the factors limiting the quality of prosthetic vision. PMID:21593546

  17. Encoding visual information in retinal ganglion cells with prosthetic stimulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Freeman, Daniel K.; Rizzo, Joseph F., III; Fried, Shelley I.

    2011-06-01

    Retinal prostheses aim to restore functional vision to those blinded by outer retinal diseases using electric stimulation of surviving retinal neurons. The ability to replicate the spatiotemporal pattern of ganglion cell spike trains present under normal viewing conditions is presumably an important factor for restoring high-quality vision. In order to replicate such activity with a retinal prosthesis, it is important to consider both how visual information is encoded in ganglion cell spike trains, and how retinal neurons respond to electric stimulation. The goal of the current review is to bring together these two concepts in order to guide the development of more effective stimulation strategies. We review the experiments to date that have studied how retinal neurons respond to electric stimulation and discuss these findings in the context of known retinal signaling strategies. The results from such in vitro studies reveal the advantages and disadvantages of activating the ganglion cell directly with the electric stimulus (direct activation) as compared to activation of neurons that are presynaptic to the ganglion cell (indirect activation). While direct activation allows high temporal but low spatial resolution, indirect activation yields improved spatial resolution but poor temporal resolution. Finally, we use knowledge gained from in vitro experiments to infer the patterns of elicited activity in ongoing human trials, providing insights into some of the factors limiting the quality of prosthetic vision.

  18. Imaging of retinal ganglion cells in glaucoma: pitfalls and challenges.

    PubMed

    Werkmeister, R M; Cherecheanu, A Popa; Garhofer, G; Schmidl, D; Schmetterer, L

    2013-08-01

    Imaging has gained a key role in modern glaucoma management. Traditionally, interest was directed toward the appearance of the optic nerve head and the retinal nerve fiber layer. With the improvement of the resolution of optical coherence tomography, the ganglion cell complex has also become routinely accessible in the clinic. Further advances have been made in understanding the structure-function relationship in glaucoma. Nevertheless, direct imaging of the retinal ganglion cells in glaucoma would be advantageous. With the currently used techniques, this goal cannot be achieved, because the transversal resolution is limited by aberrations of the eye. The use of adaptive optics has significantly improved transversal resolution, and the imaging of several cell types including cones and astrocytes has become possible. Imaging of retinal ganglion cells, however, still remains a problem, because of the transparency of these cells. However, the visualization of retinal ganglion cells and their dendrites has been achieved in animal models. Furthermore, attempts have been made to visualize the apoptosis of retinal ganglion cells in vivo. Implementation of these techniques in clinical practice will probably improve glaucoma care and facilitate the development of neuroprotective strategies. PMID:23512142

  19. The retinal ganglion cell classes of New World primates.

    PubMed

    Yamada, E S; Silveira, L C; Gomes, F L; Lee, B B

    1996-12-01

    In the primate retina there are distinct ganglion cell classes, exhibiting particular morphologies and central projections, each responsible for conveying particular types of visual information to the brain. The chief retinal inputs to the cortex arise from specific ganglion cell classes, M-ganglion cells, responsible for carrying the luminance signal, and P-ganglion cells, that convey the red-green color opponent signal, as well as high contrast luminance signal. There are other ganglion cell classes, such as small-field bistratified cells, exhibiting dendrites that stratify at two different levels in the inner plexiform layer, which convey the blue-yellow color opponent signal. Most published data concerning primate retinal ganglion cell anatomy and physiology have been obtained from Old World species. Studies on New World monkeys have recently become of interest since they differ from the Old World monkeys with respect to the color vision inheritance pattern. On reviewing retinal ganglion cell layer organization in New World monkeys, it seems that there are more similarities than differences in relation to the Old World monkeys. Diurnal genera of New World monkeys exhibit a well-developed fovea centralis and ganglion cell density peak, as well as peripheral density values which are in the range reported for Old World monkeys and human. Moreover, all the major ganglion cell classes identified in Old World monkeys are also present in New World primates. Up to now, no obvious anatomical differences between dichromats and trichromats have been reported. The only genus that is significantly different from the others is the Aotus. It exhibits lower ganglion cell density in the central retina, and apparently lacks the small-field bistratified cells. PMID:9394516

  20. Directional summation in non-direction selective retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Abbas, Syed Y; Hamade, Khaldoun C; Yang, Ellen J; Nawy, Scott; Smith, Robert G; Pettit, Diana L

    2013-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cells receive inputs from multiple bipolar cells which must be integrated before a decision to fire is made. Theoretical studies have provided clues about how this integration is accomplished but have not directly determined the rules regulating summation of closely timed inputs along single or multiple dendrites. Here we have examined dendritic summation of multiple inputs along On ganglion cell dendrites in whole mount rat retina. We activated inputs at targeted locations by uncaging glutamate sequentially to generate apparent motion along On ganglion cell dendrites in whole mount retina. Summation was directional and dependent13 on input sequence. Input moving away from the soma (centrifugal) resulted in supralinear summation, while activation sequences moving toward the soma (centripetal) were linear. Enhanced summation for centrifugal activation was robust as it was also observed in cultured retinal ganglion cells. This directional summation was dependent on hyperpolarization activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels as blockade with ZD7288 eliminated directionality. A computational model confirms that activation of HCN channels can override a preference for centripetal summation expected from cell anatomy. This type of direction selectivity could play a role in coding movement similar to the axial selectivity seen in locust ganglion cells which detect looming stimuli. More generally, these results suggest that non-directional retinal ganglion cells can discriminate between input sequences independent of the retina network. PMID:23516351

  1. Directional Summation in Non-direction Selective Retinal Ganglion Cells

    PubMed Central

    Abbas, Syed Y.; Hamade, Khaldoun C.; Yang, Ellen J.; Nawy, Scott; Smith, Robert G.; Pettit, Diana L.

    2013-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cells receive inputs from multiple bipolar cells which must be integrated before a decision to fire is made. Theoretical studies have provided clues about how this integration is accomplished but have not directly determined the rules regulating summation of closely timed inputs along single or multiple dendrites. Here we have examined dendritic summation of multiple inputs along On ganglion cell dendrites in whole mount rat retina. We activated inputs at targeted locations by uncaging glutamate sequentially to generate apparent motion along On ganglion cell dendrites in whole mount retina. Summation was directional and dependent13 on input sequence. Input moving away from the soma (centrifugal) resulted in supralinear summation, while activation sequences moving toward the soma (centripetal) were linear. Enhanced summation for centrifugal activation was robust as it was also observed in cultured retinal ganglion cells. This directional summation was dependent on hyperpolarization activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels as blockade with ZD7288 eliminated directionality. A computational model confirms that activation of HCN channels can override a preference for centripetal summation expected from cell anatomy. This type of direction selectivity could play a role in coding movement similar to the axial selectivity seen in locust ganglion cells which detect looming stimuli. More generally, these results suggest that non-directional retinal ganglion cells can discriminate between input sequences independent of the retina network. PMID:23516351

  2. Retinal ganglion cell topography in juvenile Pacific bluefin tuna Thunnus orientalis (Temminck and Schlegel).

    PubMed

    Miyazaki, Taeko

    2014-02-01

    The retinal ganglion cell distribution, which is known to reflect fish feeding behavior, was investigated in juvenile Pacific bluefin tuna Thunnus orientalis. During the course of examination, regularly arrayed cells with a distinctive larger soma, which may be regarded as motion-sensitive cells, were found. The topographical distribution of ordinary-sized ganglion cells, which is usually utilized to estimate fish visual axis and/or visual field characteristics, showed that the highest-density area, termed the area centralis, was localized in the ventral-temporal retina. The retinal topography of ordinary-sized ganglion cells seems to reflect the bluefin tuna's foraging behavior; while cruising, cells in the area centralis may signal potential prey, such as small schooling pelagic fishes or squids, that are present in the upward-forward direction. Judging from morphological characteristics, the large ganglion cells localized in the small temporal retinal area seem to be equivalent to physiologically categorized off-center Y-cells of cat, which are stimulated by a transient dark spot in a bright visual field. It was inferred that presumed large off-center cells in the temporal retina detect movements of agile prey animals escaping from bluefin tuna as a silhouette against environmental light. PMID:23775518

  3. Dorsal raphe nucleus projecting retinal ganglion cells: Why Y cells?

    PubMed Central

    Pickard, Gary E.; So, Kwok-Fai; Pu, Mingliang

    2015-01-01

    Retinal ganglion Y (alpha) cells are found in retinas ranging from frogs to mice to primates. The highly conserved nature of the large, fast conducting retinal Y cell is a testament to its fundamental task, although precisely what this task is remained ill-defined. The recent discovery that Y-alpha retinal ganglion cells send axon collaterals to the serotonergic dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN) in addition to the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN), medial interlaminar nucleus (MIN), pretectum and the superior colliculus (SC) has offered new insights into the important survival tasks performed by these cells with highly branched axons. We propose that in addition to its role in visual perception, the Y-alpha retinal ganglion cell provides concurrent signals via axon collaterals to the DRN, the major source of serotonergic afferents to the forebrain, to dramatically inhibit 5-HT activity during orientation or alerting/escape responses, which dis-facilitates ongoing tonic motor activity while dis-inhibiting sensory information processing throughout the visual system. The new data provide a fresh view of these evolutionarily old retinal ganglion cells. PMID:26363667

  4. Dorsal raphe nucleus projecting retinal ganglion cells: Why Y cells?

    PubMed

    Pickard, Gary E; So, Kwok-Fai; Pu, Mingliang

    2015-10-01

    Retinal ganglion Y (alpha) cells are found in retinas ranging from frogs to mice to primates. The highly conserved nature of the large, fast conducting retinal Y cell is a testament to its fundamental task, although precisely what this task is remained ill-defined. The recent discovery that Y-alpha retinal ganglion cells send axon collaterals to the serotonergic dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN) in addition to the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN), medial interlaminar nucleus (MIN), pretectum and the superior colliculus (SC) has offered new insights into the important survival tasks performed by these cells with highly branched axons. We propose that in addition to its role in visual perception, the Y-alpha retinal ganglion cell provides concurrent signals via axon collaterals to the DRN, the major source of serotonergic afferents to the forebrain, to dramatically inhibit 5-HT activity during orientation or alerting/escape responses, which dis-facilitates ongoing tonic motor activity while dis-inhibiting sensory information processing throughout the visual system. The new data provide a fresh view of these evolutionarily old retinal ganglion cells. PMID:26363667

  5. Selectivity for multiple stimulus features in retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Fairhall, Adrienne L; Burlingame, C Andrew; Narasimhan, Ramesh; Harris, Robert A; Puchalla, Jason L; Berry, Michael J

    2006-11-01

    Under normal viewing conditions, retinal ganglion cells transmit to the brain an encoded version of the visual world. The retina parcels the visual scene into an array of spatiotemporal features, and each ganglion cell conveys information about a small set of these features. We study the temporal features represented by salamander retinal ganglion cells by stimulating with dynamic spatially uniform flicker and recording responses using a multi-electrode array. While standard reverse correlation methods determine a single stimulus feature--the spike-triggered average--multiple features can be relevant to spike generation. We apply covariance analysis to determine the set of features to which each ganglion cell is sensitive. Using this approach, we found that salamander ganglion cells represent a rich vocabulary of different features of a temporally modulated visual stimulus. Individual ganglion cells were sensitive to at least two and sometimes as many as six features in the stimulus. While a fraction of the cells can be described by a filter-and-fire cascade model, many cells have feature selectivity that has not previously been reported. These reverse models were able to account for 80-100% of the information encoded by ganglion cells. PMID:16914609

  6. Spontaneous Discharge Patterns in Cochlear Spiral Ganglion Cells Prior to the Onset of Hearing in Cats

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Timothy A.; Leake, Patricia A.; Snyder, Russell L.; Stakhovskaya, Olga; Bonham, Ben

    2008-01-01

    Spontaneous neural activity has been recorded in the auditory nerve of cats as early as 2 days postnatal (P2 ), yet individual auditory neurons do not respond to ambient sound levels below 90–100 dB SPL until about P10. Significant refinement of the central projections from the spiral ganglion to the cochlear nucleus occurs during this neonatal period. This refinement may be dependent on peripheral spontaneous discharge activity. We recorded from single spiral ganglion cells in kittens aged P3 to P9. The spiral ganglion was accessed via the round window through the spiral lamina. A total of 112 ganglion cells were isolated for study in 9 animals. Spike rates in neonates were very low, ranging from 0.06 to 56 sp/s with a mean of 3.09 +/− 8.24 sp/s. Ganglion cells in neonatal kittens exhibited remarkable repetitive spontaneous bursting discharge patterns. The unusual patterns were evident in the large mean interval coefficient of variation (CVi = 2.9 +/−1.6) and burst index of 5.2 +/− 3.5 across ganglion cells. Spontaneous bursting patterns in these neonatal mammals were similar to those reported for cochlear ganglion cells of the embryonic chicken suggesting this may be a general phenomenon that is common across animal classes. Rhythmic spontaneous discharge of retinal ganglion cells has been shown to be important in the development of central retinotopic projections and normal binocular vision (Shatz, 1996, Proc Natl Acad Sci 93). Bursting rhythms in cochlear ganglion cells may play a similar role in the auditory system during pre-hearing periods. PMID:17686914

  7. Expression of Aquaporin-6 in Rat Retinal Ganglion Cells.

    PubMed

    Jang, Sun Young; Lee, Eung Suk; Ohn, Young-Hoon; Park, Tae Kwann

    2016-08-01

    Several aquaporins (AQPs) have been identified to be present in the eyes, and it has been suggested that they are involved in the movement of water and small solutes. AQP6, which has low water permeability and transports mainly anions, was recently discovered in the eyes. In the present study, we investigate the localization of AQP6 in the rat retina and show that AQP6 is selectively localized to the ganglion cell layer and the outer plexiform layer. Along with the gradual decrease in retinal ganglion cells after a crushing injury of optic nerve, immunofluorescence signals of AQP6 gradually decreased. Confocal microscope images confirmed AQP6 expression in retinal ganglion cells and Müller cells in vitro. Therefore, AQP6 might participate in water and anion transport in these cells. PMID:26526333

  8. Changes in morphology of retinal ganglion cells with eccentricity in retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Anderson, E E; Greferath, U; Fletcher, E L

    2016-05-01

    Ganglion cells are the output neurons of the retina and are known to remodel during the subtle plasticity changes that occur following the death of photoreceptors in inherited retinal degeneration. We examine the influence of retinal eccentricity on anatomical remodelling and ganglion cell morphology well after photoreceptor loss. Rd1 mice that have a mutation in the β subunit of phosphodiesterase 6 were used as a model of retinal degeneration and gross remodelling events were examined by processing serial sections for immunocytochemistry. Retinal wholemounts from rd1-Thy1 and control Thy1 mice that contained a fluorescent protein labelling a subset of ganglion cells were processed for immunohistochemistry at 11 months of age. Ganglion cells were classified based on their soma size, dendritic field size and dendritic branching pattern and their dendritic fields were analysed for their length, area and quantity of branching points. Overall, more remodelling was found in the central compared with the peripheral retina. In addition, the size and complexity of A2, B1, C1 and D type ganglion cells located in the central region of the retina decreased. We propose that the changes in ganglion cell morphology are correlated with remodelling events in these regions and impact the function of retinal circuitry in the degenerated retina. PMID:26670589

  9. Tissue engineering the retinal ganglion cell nerve fiber layer.

    PubMed

    Kador, Karl E; Montero, Ramon B; Venugopalan, Praseeda; Hertz, Jonathan; Zindell, Allison N; Valenzuela, Daniel A; Uddin, Mohammed S; Lavik, Erin B; Muller, Kenneth J; Andreopoulos, Fotios M; Goldberg, Jeffrey L

    2013-06-01

    Retinal degenerative diseases, such as glaucoma and macular degeneration, affect millions of people worldwide and ultimately lead to retinal cell death and blindness. Cell transplantation therapies for photoreceptors demonstrate integration and restoration of function, but transplantation into the ganglion cell layer is more complex, requiring guidance of axons from transplanted cells to the optic nerve head in order to reach targets in the brain. Here we create a biodegradable electrospun (ES) scaffold designed to direct the growth of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axons radially, mimicking axon orientation in the retina. Using this scaffold we observed an increase in RGC survival and no significant change in their electrophysiological properties. When analyzed for alignment, 81% of RGCs were observed to project axons radially along the scaffold fibers, with no difference in alignment compared to the nerve fiber layer of retinal explants. When transplanted onto retinal explants, RGCs on ES scaffolds followed the radial pattern of the host retinal nerve fibers, whereas RGCs transplanted directly grew axons in a random pattern. Thus, the use of this scaffold as a cell delivery device represents a significant step towards the use of cell transplant therapies for the treatment of glaucoma and other retinal degenerative diseases. PMID:23489919

  10. Tissue Engineering the Retinal Ganglion Cell Nerve Fiber Layer

    PubMed Central

    Kador, Karl E.; Montero, Ramon B.; Venugopalan, Praseeda; Hertz, Jonathan; Zindell, Allison N.; Valenzuela, Daniel A.; Uddin, Mohammed S.; Lavik, Erin B.; Muller, Kenneth J.; Andreopoulos, Fotios M.; Goldberg, Jeffrey L.

    2013-01-01

    Retinal degenerative diseases, such as glaucoma and macular degeneration, affect millions of people worldwide and ultimately lead to retinal cell death and blindness. Cell transplantation therapies for photoreceptors demonstrate integration and restoration of function, but transplantation into the ganglion cell layer is more complex, requiring guidance of axons from transplanted cells to the optic nerve head in order to reach targets in the brain. Here we create a biodegradable electrospun (ES) scaffold designed to direct the growth of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axons radially, mimicking axon orientation in the retina. Using this scaffold we observed an increase in RGC survival and no significant change in their electrophysiological properties. When analyzed for alignment, 81% of RGCs were observed to project axons radially along the scaffold fibers, with no difference in alignment compared to the nerve fiber layer of retinal explants. When transplanted onto retinal explants, RGCs on ES scaffolds followed the radial pattern of the host retinal nerve fibers, whereas RGCs transplanted directly grew axons in a random pattern. Thus, the use of this scaffold as a cell delivery device represents a significant step towards the use of cell transplant therapies for the treatment of glaucoma and other retinal degenerative diseases. PMID:23489919

  11. White Matter Consequences of Retinal Receptor and Ganglion Cell Damage

    PubMed Central

    Ogawa, Shumpei; Takemura, Hiromasa; Horiguchi, Hiroshi; Terao, Masahiko; Haji, Tomoki; Pestilli, Franco; Yeatman, Jason D.; Tsuneoka, Hiroshi; Wandell, Brian A.; Masuda, Yoichiro

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. Patients with Leber hereditary optic neuropathy (LHON) and cone-rod dystrophy (CRD) have central vision loss; but CRD damages the retinal photoreceptor layer, and LHON damages the retinal ganglion cell (RGC) layer. Using diffusion MRI, we measured how these two types of retinal damage affect the optic tract (ganglion cell axons) and optic radiation (geniculo-striate axons). Methods. Adult onset CRD (n = 5), LHON (n = 6), and healthy controls (n = 14) participated in the study. We used probabilistic fiber tractography to identify the optic tract and the optic radiation. We compared axial and radial diffusivity at many positions along the optic tract and the optic radiation. Results. In both types of patients, diffusion measures within the optic tract and the optic radiation differ from controls. The optic tract change is principally a decrease in axial diffusivity; the optic radiation change is principally an increase in radial diffusivity. Conclusions. Both photoreceptor layer (CRD) and retinal ganglion cell (LHON) retinal disease causes substantial change in the visual white matter. These changes can be measured using diffusion MRI. The diffusion changes measured in the optic tract and the optic radiation differ, suggesting that they are caused by different biological mechanisms. PMID:25257055

  12. Decorrelation and efficient coding by retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Pitkow, Xaq; Meister, Markus

    2013-01-01

    An influential theory of visual processing asserts that retinal center-surround receptive fields remove spatial correlations in the visual world, producing ganglion cell spike trains that are less redundant than the corresponding image pixels. For bright, high-contrast images, this decorrelation would enhance coding efficiency in optic nerve fibers of limited capacity. Here we test the central prediction of the theory and demonstrate that the spike trains of retinal ganglion cells are indeed decorrelated compared to the visual input. However, most of the decorrelation is accomplished not by the receptive fields, but by nonlinear processing in the retina. We show that a steep response threshold enhances efficient coding by noisy spike trains, and the effect of this nonlinearity is near optimal in both salamander and macaque retina. These results offer an explanation for the sparseness of retinal spike trains, and highlight the importance of treating the full nonlinear character of neural codes. PMID:22406548

  13. Retinal Ganglion Cell Adaptation to Small Luminance Fluctuations

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Daniel K.; Graña, Gilberto

    2010-01-01

    To accommodate the wide input range over which the visual system operates within the narrow output range of spiking neurons, the retina adjusts its sensitivity to the mean light level so that retinal ganglion cells can faithfully signal contrast, or relative deviations from the mean luminance. Given the large operating range of the visual system, the majority of work on luminance adaptation has involved logarithmic changes in light level. We report that luminance gain controls are recruited for remarkably small fluctuations in luminance as well. Using spike recordings from the rat optic tract, we show that ganglion cell responses to a brief flash of light are modulated in amplitude by local background fluctuations as little as 15% contrast. The time scale of the gain control is rapid (<125 ms), at least for on cells. The retinal locus of adaptation precedes the ganglion cell spike generator because response gain changes of on cells were uncorrelated with firing rate. The mechanism seems to reside within the inner retinal network and not in the photoreceptors, because the adaptation profiles of on and off cells differed markedly. The response gain changes follow Weber's law, suggesting that network mechanisms of luminance adaptation described in previous work modulates retinal ganglion cell sensitivity, not just when we move between different lighting environments, but also as our eyes scan a visual scene. Finally, we show that response amplitude is uniformly reduced for flashes on a modulated background that has spatial contrast, indicating that another gain control that integrates luminance signals nonlinearly over space operates within the receptive field center of rat ganglion cells. PMID:20538771

  14. [Phototransduction mediated by melanopsin in intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells].

    PubMed

    Domínguez-Solís, Carlos Augusto; Pérez-León, Jorge Alberto

    2015-01-01

    Melanopsin is the most recent photopigment described. As all the other opsins, it attaches in the retina as chromophore. Its amino acid sequence resembles more invertebrate opsins than those of vertebrates. The signal transduction pathway of opsins in vertebrates is based on the coupling to the G protein transducin, triggering a signaling cascade that results in the hyperpolarization of the plasma membrane. On the contrary, the photoreceptors of invertebrates activate the Gq protein pathway, which leads to depolarizing responses. Phototransduction mediated by melanopsin leads to the depolarization of those cells where it is expressed, the intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells; the cellular messengers and the ion channel type(s) responsible for the cells´ response is still unclear. Studies to elucidate the signaling cascade of melanopsin in heterologous expression systems, in retina and isolated/cultured intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells, have provided evidence for the involvement of protein Gq and phospholipase C together with the likely participation of an ion channel member of the transient receptor potential-canonical family, a transduction pathway similar to invertebrate photopigments, particularly Drosophila melanogaster. The intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells are the sole source of retinal inferences to the suprachiasmatic nucleus; thus, clarifying completely the melanopsin signaling pathway will impact the chronobiology field, including the clinical aspects. PMID:26581535

  15. The functional diversity of retinal ganglion cells in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Baden, Tom; Berens, Philipp; Franke, Katrin; Román Rosón, Miroslav; Bethge, Matthias; Euler, Thomas

    2016-01-21

    In the vertebrate visual system, all output of the retina is carried by retinal ganglion cells. Each type encodes distinct visual features in parallel for transmission to the brain. How many such 'output channels' exist and what each encodes are areas of intense debate. In the mouse, anatomical estimates range from 15 to 20 channels, and only a handful are functionally understood. By combining two-photon calcium imaging to obtain dense retinal recordings and unsupervised clustering of the resulting sample of more than 11,000 cells, here we show that the mouse retina harbours substantially more than 30 functional output channels. These include all known and several new ganglion cell types, as verified by genetic and anatomical criteria. Therefore, information channels from the mouse eye to the mouse brain are considerably more diverse than shown thus far by anatomical studies, suggesting an encoding strategy resembling that used in state-of-the-art artificial vision systems. PMID:26735013

  16. Colocalization of HCN Channel Subunits in Rat Retinal Ganglion Cells

    PubMed Central

    Stradleigh, Tyler W.; Ogata, Genki; Partida, Gloria J.; Oi, Hanako; Greenberg, Kenneth P.; Krempely, Kalen S.; Ishida, Andrew T.

    2011-01-01

    The current-passing pore of mammalian hyperpolarization-activated, cyclic nucleotide-gated ("HCN") channels is formed by subunit isoforms denoted HCN1-4. In various brain areas, antibodies directed against multiple isoforms bind to single neurons and the current ("Ih") passed during hyperpolarizations differs from that of heterologously expressed homomeric channels. By contrast, retinal rod, cone, and bipolar cells appear to use homomeric HCN channels. Here, we assess the generality of this pattern by examining HCN1 and HCN4 immunoreactivity in rat retinal ganglion cells, measuring Ih in dissociated cells, and testing whether HCN1 and HCN4 protein coimmunoprecipitate. Nearly half of the ganglion cells in whole-mounted retinae bound antibodies against both isoforms. Consistent with colocalization and physical association, 8-bromo-cAMP shifted the voltage-sensitivity of Ih less than that of HCN4 channels and more than that of HCN1 channels, and HCN1 coimmunoprecipitated with HCN4 from membrane fraction proteins. Lastly, the immunopositive somata ranged in diameter from the smallest to the largest in rat retina, the dendrites of immunopositive cells arborized at various levels of the inner plexiform layer and over fields of different diameters, and Ih activated with similar kinetics and proportions of fast and slow components in small, medium, and large somata. These results show that different HCN subunits colocalize in single retinal ganglion cells, identify a subunit that can reconcile native Ih properties with the previously reported presence of HCN4 in these cells, and indicate that Ih is biophysically similar in morphologically diverse retinal ganglion cells and differs from Ih in rods, cones, and bipolar cells. PMID:21456027

  17. Degeneration of retinal ganglion cells in diabetic dogs and mice: Relationship to glycemic control and retinal capillary degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Howell, Scott J.; Mekhail, Mena N.; Azem, Rami; Ward, Nicole L.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose The purpose of this study was to investigate (i) the effect of diabetes on retinal ganglion cell death in diabetic dogs and mice, (ii) the effect of prolonged glycemic control on diabetes-induced death of retinal ganglion cells, (iii) whether retinal ganglion cell death in diabetes is associated with degeneration of retinal capillaries, and (iv) the effect of diet on diabetes-induced degeneration of retinal ganglion cells in mice. Methods Diabetes was induced in dogs using streptozotocin, and levels of glycemic control (good, moderate, and poor) were maintained for 5 years. Diabetes was studied in two mouse models (diabetes induced in C57Bl/6J mice using streptozotocin and spontaneously diabetic Ins2Akita mice). Retinal ganglion cell death was investigated by counting the number of axons from the ganglion cells in the optic nerve and with terminal transferase deoxyuridine triphosphate nick-end labeling and annexin V staining in mice. Results As reported previously, the development and severity of vascular lesions of diabetic retinopathy in diabetic dogs were strongly associated with glycemic control. Loss of retinal ganglion cells was extensive in dogs kept in poor glycemic control, and was essentially prevented in diabetic dogs kept in good glycemic control for the 5 years of study. In contrast, “moderate” glycemic control (intermediate between poor and good glycemic control) caused a significant increase in vascular pathology, but did not cause loss of retinal axons in the optic nerve. Using this validated optic nerve axon counting method, the two mouse models of diabetic retinopathy were studied to assess ganglion cell death. Despite 10 months of diabetes (a duration that has been shown to cause retinal capillary degeneration in both models), neither mouse model showed loss of optic nerve axons (thus suggesting no loss of retinal ganglion cells). Likewise, other parameters of cell death (terminal transferase deoxyuridine triphosphate nick

  18. Studies of retinal representations within the cat's optic tract

    SciTech Connect

    Torrealba, F.; Guillery, R.W.; Eysel, U.; Polley, E.H.; Mason, C.A.

    1982-11-10

    The manner in which each retina can be mapped onto a single cross section of the optic tract of the cat has been defined by neuroanatomical methods. It has been found that the contralateral nasal hemi-retina and both temporal hemi-retinae are represented in each tract by multiple, rough maps which partially overlap one another. All maps show the same general orientation, with area centralis represented dorsomedially, lower retina represented dorsolaterally, and upper retina represented ventromedially. The peripheral part of the horizontal meridian is represented ventrolaterally. Labeling all of the fibers from one eye by axonal degeneration or autoradiographic methods shows that the crossed map is displaced dorsally and medially relative to the uncrossed map, leaving a dorsomedial crescent of pure crossed fibers. Localized retinal lesions or injections of /sup 3/H-amino acid show the general orientation of the maps. Lesions within the dorsomedial pure crossed crescent show that fibers in this crescent arise from retinal areas close to the optic disc, near the site of the early fetal fissure. Localized injections of horseradish peroxidase into the optic tract show the relationships of the several maps in terms of the retinal distribution of retrogradely labeled retinal ganglion cells. They show that axons of large and small cells map ventrolaterally in the tract while intermediate sizes map dorsomedially. They confirm that the crossed map is displaced relative to the uncrossed maps. It is suggested that the optic tract develops by fibers taking a position in the tract in accordance with their time of arrival at the chiasm. The several maps are displaced because they develop sequentially and the optic tract can be read as a developmental record, the most dorsomedial axons being the oldest.

  19. Taurine provides neuroprotection against retinal ganglion cell degeneration.

    PubMed

    Froger, Nicolas; Cadetti, Lucia; Lorach, Henri; Martins, Joao; Bemelmans, Alexis-Pierre; Dubus, Elisabeth; Degardin, Julie; Pain, Dorothée; Forster, Valérie; Chicaud, Laurent; Ivkovic, Ivana; Simonutti, Manuel; Fouquet, Stéphane; Jammoul, Firas; Léveillard, Thierry; Benosman, Ryad; Sahel, José-Alain; Picaud, Serge

    2012-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) degeneration occurs in numerous retinal diseases leading to blindness, either as a primary process like in glaucoma, or secondary to photoreceptor loss. However, no commercial drug is yet directly targeting RGCs for their neuroprotection. In the 70s, taurine, a small sulfonic acid provided by nutrition, was found to be essential for the survival of photoreceptors, but this dependence was not related to any retinal disease. More recently, taurine deprivation was incriminated in the retinal toxicity of an antiepileptic drug. We demonstrate here that taurine can improve RGC survival in culture or in different animal models of RGC degeneration. Taurine effect on RGC survival was assessed in vitro on primary pure RCG cultures under serum-deprivation conditions, and on NMDA-treated retinal explants from adult rats. In vivo, taurine was administered through the drinking water in two glaucomatous animal models (DBA/2J mice and rats with vein occlusion) and in a model of Retinitis pigmentosa with secondary RGC degeneration (P23H rats). After a 6-day incubation, 1 mM taurine significantly enhanced RGCs survival (+68%), whereas control RGCs were cultured in a taurine-free medium, containing all natural amino-acids. This effect was found to rely on taurine-uptake by RGCs. Furthermore taurine (1 mM) partly prevented NMDA-induced RGC excitotoxicity. Finally, taurine supplementation increased RGC densities both in DBA/2J mice, in rats with vein occlusion and in P23H rats by contrast to controls drinking taurine-free water. This study indicates that enriched taurine nutrition can directly promote RGC survival through RGC intracellular pathways. It provides evidence that taurine can positively interfere with retinal degenerative diseases. PMID:23115615

  20. Taurine Provides Neuroprotection against Retinal Ganglion Cell Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Froger, Nicolas; Cadetti, Lucia; Lorach, Henri; Martins, Joao; Bemelmans, Alexis-Pierre; Dubus, Elisabeth; Degardin, Julie; Pain, Dorothée; Forster, Valérie; Chicaud, Laurent; Ivkovic, Ivana; Simonutti, Manuel; Fouquet, Stéphane; Jammoul, Firas; Léveillard, Thierry; Benosman, Ryad; Sahel, José-Alain; Picaud, Serge

    2012-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) degeneration occurs in numerous retinal diseases leading to blindness, either as a primary process like in glaucoma, or secondary to photoreceptor loss. However, no commercial drug is yet directly targeting RGCs for their neuroprotection. In the 70s, taurine, a small sulfonic acid provided by nutrition, was found to be essential for the survival of photoreceptors, but this dependence was not related to any retinal disease. More recently, taurine deprivation was incriminated in the retinal toxicity of an antiepileptic drug. We demonstrate here that taurine can improve RGC survival in culture or in different animal models of RGC degeneration. Taurine effect on RGC survival was assessed in vitro on primary pure RCG cultures under serum-deprivation conditions, and on NMDA-treated retinal explants from adult rats. In vivo, taurine was administered through the drinking water in two glaucomatous animal models (DBA/2J mice and rats with vein occlusion) and in a model of Retinitis pigmentosa with secondary RGC degeneration (P23H rats). After a 6-day incubation, 1 mM taurine significantly enhanced RGCs survival (+68%), whereas control RGCs were cultured in a taurine-free medium, containing all natural amino-acids. This effect was found to rely on taurine-uptake by RGCs. Furthermore taurine (1 mM) partly prevented NMDA-induced RGC excitotoxicity. Finally, taurine supplementation increased RGC densities both in DBA/2J mice, in rats with vein occlusion and in P23H rats by contrast to controls drinking taurine-free water. This study indicates that enriched taurine nutrition can directly promote RGC survival through RGC intracellular pathways. It provides evidence that taurine can positively interfere with retinal degenerative diseases. PMID:23115615

  1. Melanopsin-expressing intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells in retinal disease.

    PubMed

    Feigl, Beatrix; Zele, Andrew J

    2014-08-01

    Melanopsin-containing intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) are a class of photoreceptors with established roles in non-image-forming processes. Their contributions to image-forming vision may include the estimation of brightness. Animal models have been central for understanding the physiological mechanisms of ipRGC function and there is evidence of conservation of function across species. Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells can be divided into five ganglion cell subtypes that show morphological and functional diversity. Research in humans has established that ipRGCs signal environmental irradiance to entrain the central body clock to the solar day for regulating circadian processes and sleep. In addition, ipRGCs mediate the pupil light reflex (PLR), making the PLR a readily accessible behavioral marker of ipRGC activity. Less is known about ipRGC function in retinal and optic nerve disease, with emerging research providing insight into their function in diabetes, retinitis pigmentosa, glaucoma, and hereditary optic neuropathy. We briefly review the anatomical distributions, projections, and basic physiological mechanisms of ipRGCs and their proposed and known functions in animals and humans with and without eye disease. We introduce a paradigm for differentiating inner and outer retinal inputs to the pupillary control pathway in retinal disease and apply this paradigm to patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD). In these cases of patients with AMD, we provide the initial evidence that ipRGC function is altered and that the dysfunction is more pronounced in advanced disease. Our perspective is that with refined pupillometry paradigms, the PLR can be extended to AMD assessment as a tool for the measurement of inner and outer retinal dysfunction. PMID:24879087

  2. Bulk electroporation of retinal ganglion cells in live Xenopus tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Ruthazer, Edward S; Schohl, Anne; Schwartz, Neil; Tavakoli, Aydin; Tremblay, Marc; Cline, Hollis T

    2013-08-01

    Individual neurons in the developing nervous system of Xenopus laevis can be visualized by the targeted delivery of a fluorophore. The fluorophore can be delivered as a fluorescent dye or DNA that encodes a fluorescent protein. Local iontophoresis is a method that works well for transfer of fluorescent dye to retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in the eye, but it does not give a high yield for delivery of DNA. This is largely because the degree of pigmentation of the eyes, even in albino strains, makes it difficult to visualize RGC somata during pipette positioning. Bulk retinal electroporation is a better approach for delivery of plasmid DNA to RGC. The method described here works best in tadpoles older than stage 42. PMID:23906915

  3. Time-Lapse Retinal Ganglion Cell Dendritic Field Degeneration Imaged in Organotypic Retinal Explant Culture

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Thomas V.; Oglesby, Ericka N.; Steinhart, Matthew R.; Cone-Kimball, Elizabeth; Jefferys, Joan; Quigley, Harry A.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To develop an ex vivo organotypic retinal explant culture system suitable for multiple time-point imaging of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) dendritic arbors over a period of 1 week, and capable of detecting dendrite neuroprotection conferred by experimental treatments. Methods Thy1-YFP mouse retinas were explanted and maintained in organotypic culture. Retinal ganglion cell dendritic arbors were imaged repeatedly using confocal laser scanning microscopy. Maximal projection z-stacks were traced by two masked investigators and dendritic fields were analyzed for characteristics including branch number, size, and complexity. One group of explants was treated with brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) added to the culture media. Changes in individual dendritic fields over time were detected using pair-wise comparison testing. Results Retinal ganglion cells in mouse retinal explant culture began to degenerate after 3 days with 52.4% surviving at 7 days. Dendritic field parameters showed minimal change over 8 hours in culture. Intra- and interobserver measurements of dendrite characteristics were strongly correlated (Spearman rank correlations consistently > 0.80). Statistically significant (P < 0.001) dendritic tree degeneration was detected following 7 days in culture including: 40% to 50% decreases in number of branch segments, number of junctions, number of terminal branches, and total branch length. Scholl analyses similarly demonstrated a significant decrease in dendritic field complexity. Treatment of explants with BDNF+CNTF significantly attenuated dendritic field degeneration. Conclusions Retinal explant culture of Thy1-YFP tissue provides a useful model for time-lapse imaging of RGC dendritic field degeneration over a course of several days, and is capable of detecting neuroprotective amelioration of dendritic pruning within individual RGCs. PMID:26811145

  4. The functional diversity of retinal ganglion cells in the mouse

    PubMed Central

    Baden, Tom; Berens, Philipp; Franke, Katrin; Rosón, Miroslav Román; Bethge, Matthias; Euler, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY In the vertebrate visual system, all output of the retina is carried by retinal ganglion cells. Each type encodes distinct visual features in parallel for transmission to the brain. How many such “output channels” exist and what each encodes is an area of intense debate. In mouse, anatomical estimates range between 15–20 channels, and only a handful are functionally understood. Combining two-photon calcium imaging to obtain dense retinal recordings and unsupervised clustering of the resulting sample of >11,000 cells, we here show that the mouse retina harbours substantially more than 30 functional output channels. These include all known and several new ganglion cell types, as verified by genetic and anatomical criteria. Therefore, information channels from the mouse’s eye to the mouse’s brain are considerably more diverse than shown thus far by anatomical studies, suggesting an encoding strategy resembling that used in state-of-the-art artificial vision systems. PMID:26735013

  5. Melanopsin retinal ganglion cell loss in Alzheimer disease

    PubMed Central

    Ross‐Cisneros, Fred N.; Koronyo, Yosef; Hannibal, Jens; Gallassi, Roberto; Cantalupo, Gaetano; Sambati, Luisa; Pan, Billy X.; Tozer, Kevin R.; Barboni, Piero; Provini, Federica; Avanzini, Pietro; Carbonelli, Michele; Pelosi, Annalisa; Chui, Helena; Liguori, Rocco; Baruzzi, Agostino; Koronyo‐Hamaoui, Maya; Sadun, Alfredo A.; Carelli, Valerio

    2015-01-01

    Objective Melanopsin retinal ganglion cells (mRGCs) are photoreceptors driving circadian photoentrainment, and circadian dysfunction characterizes Alzheimer disease (AD). We investigated mRGCs in AD, hypothesizing that they contribute to circadian dysfunction. Methods We assessed retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness by optical coherence tomography (OCT) in 21 mild‐moderate AD patients, and in a subgroup of 16 we evaluated rest–activity circadian rhythm by actigraphy. We studied postmortem mRGCs by immunohistochemistry in retinas, and axons in optic nerve cross‐sections of 14 neuropathologically confirmed AD patients. We coimmunostained for retinal amyloid β (Aβ) deposition and melanopsin to locate mRGCs. All AD cohorts were compared with age‐matched controls. Results We demonstrated an age‐related optic neuropathy in AD by OCT, with a significant reduction of RNFL thickness (p = 0.038), more evident in the superior quadrant (p = 0.006). Axonal loss was confirmed in postmortem AD optic nerves. Abnormal circadian function characterized only a subgroup of AD patients. Sleep efficiency was significantly reduced in AD patients (p = 0.001). We also found a significant loss of mRGCs in postmortem AD retinal specimens (p = 0.003) across all ages and abnormal mRGC dendritic morphology and size (p = 0.003). In flat‐mounted AD retinas, Aβ accumulation was remarkably evident inside and around mRGCs. Interpretation We show variable degrees of rest–activity circadian dysfunction in AD patients. We also demonstrate age‐related loss of optic nerve axons and specifically mRGC loss and pathology in postmortem AD retinal specimens, associated with Aβ deposition. These results all support the concept that mRGC degeneration is a contributor to circadian rhythm dysfunction in AD. ANN NEUROL 2016;79:90–109 PMID:26505992

  6. Calcium preconditioning triggers neuroprotection in retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Brandt, Sean K.; Weatherly, Monique E.; Ware, Lillian; Linn, David M.; Linn, Cindy L.

    2010-01-01

    In the mammalian retina, excitotoxicity has been shown to be involved in apoptotic retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death and is associated with certain retinal disease states including glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and retinal ischemia. Previous studies from this lab (Wehrwein et al., 2004) have demonstrated that acetylcholine (ACh) and nicotine protects against glutamate-induced excitotoxicity in isolated adult pig RGCs through nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Activation of nAChRs in these RGCs triggers cell survival signaling pathways and inhibits apoptotic enzymes (Asomugha et al., 2010). However, the link between binding of nAChRs and activation of neuroprotective pathways is unknown. In this study, we examine the hypothesis that calcium permeation through nAChR channels is required for ACh-induced neuroprotection against glutamate-induced excitotoxicity in isolated pig RGCs. RGCs were isolated from other retinal tissue using a two step panning technique and cultured for 3 days under different conditions. In some studies, calcium imaging experiments were performed using the fluorescent calcium indicator, fluo-4, and demonstrated that calcium permeates the nAChR channels located on pig RGCs. In other studies, the extracellular calcium concentration was altered to determine the effect on nicotine-induced neuroprotection. Results support the hypothesis that calcium is required for nicotine-induced neuroprotection in isolated pig RGCs. Lastly, studies were performed to analyze the effects of preconditioning on glutamate-induced excitotoxicity and neuroprotection. In these studies, a preconditioning dose of calcium was introduced to cells using a variety of mechanisms before a large glutamate insult was applied to cells. Results from these studies support the hypothesis that preconditioning cells with a relatively low level of calcium before an excitotoxic insult leads to neuroprotection. In the future, these results could provide important information

  7. Retinal ganglion cell density of the black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis): calculating visual resolution.

    PubMed

    Pettigrew, John D; Manger, Paul R

    2008-01-01

    A single right retina from a black rhinoceros was whole mounted, stained and analyzed to determine the visual resolution of the rhinoceros, an animal with reputedly poor eyesight. A range of small (15-microm diameter) to large (100-microm diameter) ganglion cell types was seen across the retina. We observed two regions of high density of retinal ganglion cells at either end of a long, but thin, horizontal streak. The temporal specialization, which receives light from the anterior visual field, exhibited a ganglion cell density of approximately 2000/mm2, while the nasal specialization exhibited a density of approximately 1500/mm2. The retina exhibited a ganglion cell density bias toward the upper half, especially so, the upper temporal quadrant, indicating that the rhinoceros would be processing visual information from the visual field below the anterior horizon for the most part. Our calculations indicate that the rhinoceros has a visual resolution of 6 cycles/degree. While this resolution is one-tenth that of humans (60 cycles/deg) and less than that of the domestic cat (9 cycles/deg), it is comparable to that of the rabbit (6 cycles/deg), and exceeds that seen in a variety of other mammals including seals, dolphins, microbats, and rats. Thus, the reputation of the rhinoceros as a myopic, weakly visual animal is not supported by our observations of the retina. We calculate that the black rhinoceros could readily distinguish a 30 cm wide human at a distance of around 200 m given the appropriate visual background. PMID:18442443

  8. CRYSTALLINS IN RETINAL GANGLION CELL SURVIVAL AND REGENERATION

    PubMed Central

    Piri, Natik; Kwong, Jacky MK; Caprioli, Joseph

    2013-01-01

    Crystallins are heterogeneous proteins classified into alpha, beta, and gamma families. Although crystallins were first identified as the major structural components of the ocular lens with a principal function to maintain lens transparency, further studies have demonstrated the expression of these proteins in a wide variety of tissues and cell types. Alpha crystallins (alpha A and alpha B) share significant homology with small heat shock proteins and have chaperone-like properties, including the ability to bind and prevent the precipitation of denatured proteins and to increase cellular resistance to stress-induced apoptosis. Stress-induced upregulation of crystallin expression is a commonly observed phenomenon and viewed as a cellular response mechanism against environmental and metabolic insults. However, several studies reported downregulation of crystallin gene expression in various models of glaucomatous nerodegeneration suggesting that that the decreased levels of crystallins may affect the survival properties of retinal ganglion cells and thus, be associated with their degeneration. This hypothesis was corroborated by increased survival of axotomized retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in retinas overexpressing alpha A or alpha B crystallins. In addition to RGC protective functions of alpha crystallins, beta or gamma crystallins were implicated in RGC axonal regeneration. These findings demonstrate the importance of crystallin genes in RGC survival and regeneration and further in-depth studies are necessary to better understand the mechanisms underlying the functions of these proteins in healthy RGCs as well as during glaucomatous neurodegeneration, which in turn could help in designing new therapeutic strategies to preserve or regenerate these cells. PMID:23709342

  9. Inner retinal inhibition shapes the receptive field of retinal ganglion cells in primate

    PubMed Central

    Protti, D A; Di Marco, S; Huang, J Y; Vonhoff, C R; Nguyen, V; Solomon, S G

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The centre–surround organisation of receptive fields is a feature of most retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and is critical for spatial discrimination and contrast detection. Although lateral inhibitory processes are known to be important in generating the receptive field surround, the contribution of each of the two synaptic layers in the primate retina remains unclear. Here we studied the spatial organisation of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs onto ON and OFF ganglion cells in the primate retina. All RGCs showed an increase in excitation in response to stimulus of preferred polarity. Inhibition onto RGCs comprised two types of responses to preferred polarity: some RGCs showed an increase in inhibition whilst others showed removal of tonic inhibition. Excitatory inputs were strongly spatially tuned but inhibitory inputs showed more variable organisation: in some neurons they were as strongly tuned as excitation, and in others inhibitory inputs showed no spatial tuning. We targeted one source of inner retinal inhibition by functionally ablating spiking amacrine cells with bath application of tetrodotoxin (TTX). TTX significantly reduced the spatial tuning of excitatory inputs. In addition, TTX reduced inhibition onto those RGCs where a stimulus of preferred polarity increased inhibition. Reconstruction of the spatial tuning properties by somatic injection of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic conductances verified that TTX-mediated inhibition onto bipolar cells increases the strength of the surround in RGC spiking output. These results indicate that in the primate retina inhibitory mechanisms in the inner plexiform layer sharpen the spatial tuning of ganglion cells. PMID:24042496

  10. Nicotinic Antagonists Enhance Process Outgrowth by Rat Retinal Ganglion Cells in Culture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lipton, Stuart A.; Frosch, Matthew P.; Phillips, Micheal D.; Tauck, David L.; Aizenman, Elias

    1988-03-01

    Functional nicotinic cholinergic receptors are found on mammalian retinal ganglion cell neurons in culture. The neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) can be detected in the medium of many of these retinal cultures, after release presumably from the choline acetyltransferase-positive amacrine cells. The postsynaptic effect of endogenous or applied ACh on the ganglion cells can be blocked with specific nicotinic antagonists. Here it is shown that within 24 hours of producing such a pharmacologic blockade, the retinal ganglion cells begin to sprout or regenerate neuronal processes. Thus, the growth-enhancing effect of nicotinic antagonists may be due to the removal of inhibition to growth by tonic levels of ACh present in the culture medium. Since there is a spontaneous leak of ACh in the intact retina, the effects of nicotinic cholinergic drugs on process outgrowth in culture may reflect a normal control mechanism for growth or regeneration of retinal ganglion cell processes that is exerted by ACh in vivo.

  11. An open-source computational tool to automatically quantify immunolabeled retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Dordea, Ana C; Bray, Mark-Anthony; Allen, Kaitlin; Logan, David J; Fei, Fei; Malhotra, Rajeev; Gregory, Meredith S; Carpenter, Anne E; Buys, Emmanuel S

    2016-06-01

    A fully automated and robust method was developed to quantify β-III-tubulin-stained retinal ganglion cells, combining computational recognition of individual cells by CellProfiler and a machine-learning tool to teach phenotypic classification of the retinal ganglion cells by CellProfiler Analyst. In animal models of glaucoma, quantification of immunolabeled retinal ganglion cells is currently performed manually and remains time-consuming. Using this automated method, quantifications of retinal ganglion cell images were accelerated tenfold: 1800 images were counted in 3 h using our automated method, while manual counting of the same images took 72 h. This new method was validated in an established murine model of microbead-induced optic neuropathy. The use of the publicly available software and the method's user-friendly design allows this technique to be easily implemented in any laboratory. PMID:27119563

  12. Enriched retinal ganglion cells derived from human embryonic stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Gill, Katherine P.; Hung, Sandy S. C.; Sharov, Alexei; Lo, Camden Y.; Needham, Karina; Lidgerwood, Grace E.; Jackson, Stacey; Crombie, Duncan E.; Nayagam, Bryony A.; Cook, Anthony L.; Hewitt, Alex W.; Pébay, Alice; Wong, Raymond C. B.

    2016-01-01

    Optic neuropathies are characterised by a loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) that lead to vision impairment. Development of cell therapy requires a better understanding of the signals that direct stem cells into RGCs. Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) represent an unlimited cellular source for generation of human RGCs in vitro. In this study, we present a 45-day protocol that utilises magnetic activated cell sorting to generate enriched population of RGCs via stepwise retinal differentiation using hESCs. We performed an extensive characterization of these stem cell-derived RGCs by examining the gene and protein expressions of a panel of neural/RGC markers. Furthermore, whole transcriptome analysis demonstrated similarity of the hESC-derived RGCs to human adult RGCs. The enriched hESC-RGCs possess long axons, functional electrophysiological profiles and axonal transport of mitochondria, suggestive of maturity. In summary, this RGC differentiation protocol can generate an enriched population of functional RGCs from hESCs, allowing future studies on disease modeling of optic neuropathies and development of cell therapies. PMID:27506453

  13. Imaging retinal ganglion cells: enabling experimental technology for clinical application.

    PubMed

    Smith, Corey A; Chauhan, Balwantray C

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in clinical ophthalmic imaging have enhanced patient care. However, the ability to differentiate retinal neurons, such as retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), would advance many areas within ophthalmology, including the screening and monitoring of glaucoma and other optic neuropathies. Imaging at the single cell level would take diagnostics to the next level. Experimental methods have provided techniques and insight into imaging RGCs, however no method has yet to be translated to clinical application. This review provides an overview of the importance of non-invasive imaging of RGCs and the clinically relevant capabilities. In addition, we report on experimental data from wild-type mice that received an in vivo intravitreal injection of a neuronal tracer that labelled RGCs, which in turn were monitored for up to 100 days post-injection with confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscopy. We were able to demonstrate efficient and consistent RGC labelling with this delivery method and discuss the issue of cell specificity. This type of experimental work is important in progressing towards clinically applicable methods for monitoring loss of RGCs in glaucoma and other optic neuropathies. We discuss the challenges to translating these findings to clinical application and how this method of tracking RGCs in vivo could provide valuable structural and functional information to clinicians. PMID:25448921

  14. Enriched retinal ganglion cells derived from human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Gill, Katherine P; Hung, Sandy S C; Sharov, Alexei; Lo, Camden Y; Needham, Karina; Lidgerwood, Grace E; Jackson, Stacey; Crombie, Duncan E; Nayagam, Bryony A; Cook, Anthony L; Hewitt, Alex W; Pébay, Alice; Wong, Raymond C B

    2016-01-01

    Optic neuropathies are characterised by a loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) that lead to vision impairment. Development of cell therapy requires a better understanding of the signals that direct stem cells into RGCs. Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) represent an unlimited cellular source for generation of human RGCs in vitro. In this study, we present a 45-day protocol that utilises magnetic activated cell sorting to generate enriched population of RGCs via stepwise retinal differentiation using hESCs. We performed an extensive characterization of these stem cell-derived RGCs by examining the gene and protein expressions of a panel of neural/RGC markers. Furthermore, whole transcriptome analysis demonstrated similarity of the hESC-derived RGCs to human adult RGCs. The enriched hESC-RGCs possess long axons, functional electrophysiological profiles and axonal transport of mitochondria, suggestive of maturity. In summary, this RGC differentiation protocol can generate an enriched population of functional RGCs from hESCs, allowing future studies on disease modeling of optic neuropathies and development of cell therapies. PMID:27506453

  15. Tetrandrine protects mouse retinal ganglion cells from ischemic injury

    PubMed Central

    Li, Weiyi; Yang, Chen; Lu, Jing; Huang, Ping; Barnstable, Colin J; Zhang, Chun; Zhang, Samuel S

    2014-01-01

    This study aimed to determine the protective effects of tetrandrine (Tet) on murine ischemia-injured retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). For this, we used serum deprivation cell model, glutamate and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)-induced RGC-5 cell death models, and staurosporine-differentiated neuron-like RGC-5 in vitro. We also investigated cell survival of purified primary-cultured RGCs treated with Tet. An in vivo retinal ischemia/reperfusion model was used to examine RGC survival after Tet administration 1 day before ischemia. We found that Tet affected RGC-5 survival in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Compared to dimethyl sulfoxide treatment, Tet increased the numbers of RGC-5 cells by 30% at 72 hours. After 48 hours, Tet protected staurosporine-induced RGC-5 cells from serum deprivation-induced cell death and significantly increased the relative number of cells cultured with 1 mM H2O2 (P<0.01). Several concentrations of Tet significantly prevented 25-mM-glutamate-induced cell death in a dose-dependent manner. Tet also increased primary RGC survival after 72 and 96 hours. Tet administration (10 μM, 2 μL) 1 day before retinal ischemia showed RGC layer loss (greater survival), which was less than those in groups with phosphate-buffered saline intravitreal injection plus ischemia in the central (P=0.005, n=6), middle (P=0.018, n=6), and peripheral (P=0.017, n=6) parts of the retina. Thus, Tet conferred protective effects on serum deprivation models of staurosporine-differentiated neuron-like RGC-5 cells and primary cultured murine RGCs. Furthermore, Tet showed greater in vivo protective effects on RGCs 1 day after ischemia. Tet and ciliary neurotrophic factor maintained the mitochondrial transmembrane potential (ΔΨm) of primary cultured RGCs and inhibited the expression of activated caspase-3 and bcl-2 in ischemia/reperfusion-insult retinas. PMID:24711693

  16. An Isolated Retinal Preparation to Record Light Response from Genetically Labeled Retinal Ganglion Cells

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Tiffany M; Kofuji, Paulo

    2011-01-01

    The first steps in vertebrate vision take place when light stimulates the rod and cone photoreceptors of the retina 1. This information is then segregated into what are known as the ON and OFF pathways. The photoreceptors signal light information to the bipolar cells (BCs), which depolarize in response to increases (On BCs) or decreases (Off BCs) in light intensity. This segregation of light information is maintained at the level of the retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), which have dendrites stratifying in either the Off sublamina of the inner plexiform layer (IPL), where they receive direct excitatory input from Off BCs, or stratifying in the On sublamina of the IPL, where they receive direct excitatory input from On BCs. This segregation of information regarding increases or decreases in illumination (the On and Off pathways) is conserved and signaled to the brain in parallel. The RGCs are the output cells of the retina, and are thus an important cell to study in order to understand how light information is signaled to visual nuclei in the brain. Advances in mouse genetics over recent decades have resulted in a variety of fluorescent reporter mouse lines where specific RGC populations are labeled with a fluorescent protein to allow for identification of RGC subtypes 2 3 4 and specific targeting for electrophysiological recording. Here, we present a method for recording light responses from fluorescently labeled ganglion cells in an intact, isolated retinal preparation. This isolated retinal preparation allows for recordings from RGCs where the dendritic arbor is intact and the inputs across the entire RGC dendritic arbor are preserved. This method is applicable across a variety of ganglion cell subtypes and is amenable to a wide variety of single-cell physiological techniques. PMID:21307827

  17. Calcium preconditioning triggers neuroprotection in retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Brandt, S K; Weatherly, M E; Ware, L; Linn, D M; Linn, C L

    2011-01-13

    In the mammalian retina, excitotoxicity has been shown to be involved in apoptotic retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death and is associated with certain retinal disease states including glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and retinal ischemia. Previous studies from this lab [Wehrwein E, Thompson SA, Coulibaly SF, Linn DM, Linn CL (2004) Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 45:1531-1543] have demonstrated that acetylcholine (ACh) and nicotine protects against glutamate-induced excitotoxicity in isolated adult pig RGCs through nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Activation of nAChRs in these RGCs triggers cell survival signaling pathways and inhibits apoptotic enzymes [Asomugha CO, Linn DM, Linn CL (2010) J Neurochem 112:214-226]. However, the link between binding of nAChRs and activation of neuroprotective pathways is unknown. In this study, we examine the hypothesis that calcium permeation through nAChR channels is required for ACh-induced neuroprotection against glutamate-induced excitotoxicity in isolated pig RGCs. RGCs were isolated from other retinal tissue using a two step panning technique and cultured for 3 days under different conditions. In some studies, calcium imaging experiments were performed using the fluorescent calcium indicator, fluo-4, and demonstrated that calcium permeates the nAChR channels located on pig RGCs. In other studies, the extracellular calcium concentration was altered to determine the effect on nicotine-induced neuroprotection. Results support the hypothesis that calcium is required for nicotine-induced neuroprotection in isolated pig RGCs. Lastly, studies were performed to analyze the effects of preconditioning on glutamate-induced excitotoxicity and neuroprotection. In these studies, a preconditioning dose of calcium was introduced to cells using a variety of mechanisms before a large glutamate insult was applied to cells. Results from these studies support the hypothesis that preconditioning cells with a relatively low level of calcium before

  18. Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) programmed necrosis contributes to ischemia-reperfusion-induced retinal damage

    PubMed Central

    Dvoriantchikova, Galina; Degterev, Alexei; Ivanov, Dmitry

    2014-01-01

    Retinal ischemia–reperfusion (IR) injury remains a common cause of blindness and has a final pathway of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death by apoptosis and necrosis. RGC apoptosis was intensively studied in IR injury, while RGC necrosis did not receive nearly enough consideration since it was viewed as an accidental and unregulated cellular event. However, there is evidence that necrosis, like apoptosis, can be implemented by a programmed mechanism. In this study, we tested the role of RGC programmed necrosis (necroptosis) in IR-induced retinal injury. We employed the mouse model of retinal IR injury for in vivo experiments. The oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD) model was used as an IR model in vitro. Primary RGCs were isolated by an immunopanning technique. Necrostatin 1 (Nec1) was used to inhibit necroptosis in in vitro and in vivo experiments. The changes in gene expression were assessed by quantitative RT-PCR. The distribution of proteins in the retina and in RGC cultures was evaluated by immunohistochemistry and immunocytochemistry, respectively. Our data suggest that proteins (Ripk1 and Ripk3), which initiate necroptosis, were present in normal and ischemic RGCs. Treatment with Nec1 significantly reduced retinal damage after IR. Increased RGC survival and reduced RGC necrosis following OGD were observed in Nec1-treated cultures. We found significantly reduced expression of genes coding pro-inflammatory markers Il1b, Ccl5, Cxcl10, Nos2 and Cybb in Nec1-treated ischemic retinas. Thus, our findings suggest that RGC necroptosis contributes to retinal damage after IR through direct loss of cells and induction of associated inflammatory responses. PMID:24751757

  19. Macro- and microstructure of the superior cervical ganglion in dogs, cats and horses during maturation.

    PubMed

    Fioretto, Emerson Ticona; de Abreu, Rogério Navarro; Castro, Marcelo Fernandes de Souza; Guidi, Wanderley Lima; Ribeiro, Antonio Augusto Coppi Maciel

    2007-01-01

    The superior cervical ganglion (SCG) provides sympathetic input to the head and neck, its relation with mandible, submandibular glands, eyes (second and third order control) and pineal gland being demonstrated in laboratory animals. In addition, the SCG's role in some neuropathies can be clearly seen in Horner's syndrome. In spite of several studies published involving rats and mice, there is little morphological descriptive and comparative data of SCG from large mammals. Thus, we investigated the SCG's macro- and microstructural organization in medium (dogs and cats) and large animals (horses) during a very specific period of the post-natal development, namely maturation (from young to adults). The SCG of dogs, cats and horses were spindle shaped and located deeply into the bifurcation of the common carotid artery, close to the distal vagus ganglion and more related to the internal carotid artery in dogs and horses, and to the occipital artery in cats. As to macromorphometrical data, that is ganglion length, there was a 23.6% increase from young to adult dogs, a 1.8% increase from young to adult cats and finally a 34% increase from young to adult horses. Histologically, the SCG's microstructure was quite similar between young and adult animals and among the 3 species. The SCG was divided into distinct compartments (ganglion units) by capsular septa of connective tissue. Inside each ganglion unit the most prominent cellular elements were ganglion neurons, glial cells and small intensely fluorescent cells, comprising the ganglion's morphological triad. Given this morphological arrangement, that is a summation of all ganglion units, SCG from dogs, cats and horses are better characterized as a ganglion complex rather than following the classical ganglion concept. During maturation (from young to adults) there was a 32.7% increase in the SCG's connective capsule in dogs, a 25.8% increase in cats and a 33.2% increase in horses. There was an age-related increase in the

  20. Developmental mechanisms that regulate retinal ganglion cell dendritic morphology

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Ning

    2011-01-01

    One of the fundamental features of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) is that dendrites of individual RGCs are confined to one or a few narrow strata within the inner plexiform layer (IPL), and each RGC synapses only with a small group of presynaptic bipolar and amacrine cells with axons/dendrites ramified in the same strata to process distinct visual features. The underlying mechanisms which control the development of this laminar-restricted distribution pattern of RGC dendrites have been extensively studied, and it is still an open question whether the dendritic pattern of RGCs is determined by molecular cues or by activity-dependent refinement. Accumulating evidence suggests that both molecular cues and activity-dependent refinement might regulate RGC dendrites in a cell subtype-specific manner. However, identification of morphological subtypes of RGCs before they have achieved their mature dendritic pattern is a major challenge in the study of RGC dendritic development. This problem is now being circumvented through the use of molecular markers in genetically engineered mouse lines to identify RGC subsets early during development. Another unanswered fundamental question in the study of activity-dependent refinement of RGC dendrites is how changes in synaptic activity lead to the changes in dendritic morphology. Recent studies have started to shed light on the molecular basis of activity-dependent dendritic refinement of RGCs by showing that some molecular cascades control the cytoskeleton reorganization of RGCs. PMID:21542137

  1. Adaptation to steady light by intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Do, Michael Tri Hoang; Yau, King-Wai

    2013-04-30

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) are recently discovered photoreceptors in the mammalian eye. These photoreceptors mediate primarily nonimage visual functions, such as pupillary light reflex and circadian photoentrainment, which are generally expected to respond to the absolute light intensity. The classical rod and cone photoreceptors, on the other hand, mediate image vision by signaling contrast, accomplished by adaptation to light. Experiments by others have indicated that the ipRGCs do, in fact, light-adapt. We found the same but, in addition, have now quantified this light adaptation for the M1 ipRGC subtype. Interestingly, in incremental-flash-on-background experiments, the ipRGC's receptor current showed a flash sensitivity that adapted in background light according to the Weber-Fechner relation, well known to describe the adaptation behavior of rods and cones. Part of this light adaptation by ipRGCs appeared to be triggered by a Ca(2+) influx, in that the flash response elicited in the absence of extracellular Ca(2+) showed a normal rising phase but a slower decay phase, resulting in longer time to peak and higher sensitivity. There is, additionally, a prominent Ca(2+)-independent component of light adaptation not typically seen in rods and cones or in invertebrate rhabdomeric photoreceptors. PMID:23589882

  2. Quantitative analysis of the retinal ganglion cell layer and optic nerve of the barn owl Tyto alba.

    PubMed

    Wathey, J C; Pettigrew, J D

    1989-01-01

    The visual capacity of the common barn owl (Tyto alba) was studied by quantitative analysis of the retina and optic nerve. Cell counts in the ganglion cell layer of the whole-mounted retina revealed a temporal area centralis with peak cell density of 12,500 cells/mm2 and a horizontal streak of high cell density extending from the area centralis into the nasal retina. Integration of the ganglion cell density map gave an estimated total of 1.4 million cells for the ganglion cell layer. Electron microscopy of a single, complete section of the optic nerve revealed a bimodal fiber diameter spectrum (modes at 0.3 and 0.9 microns; bin width = 0.2 microns), with diameters ranging from 0.15 microns (unmyelinated) to 6.05 microns (myelinated, sheath included). The total axon count for the optic nerve was estimated from sample counts to be about 680,000 axons (25% unmyelinated). Therefore, roughly half of the cells in the retinal ganglion cell layer do not send axons into the optic nerve. With certain assumptions, the data predict a visual spatial acuity for barn owls on the order of 8 cycles/degree, a value similar to the known behaviorally measured acuities of masked owls (10 cycles/degree) and domestic cats (6 cycles/degree). PMID:2758316

  3. Hyperactivity of ON-type retinal ganglion cells in streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice.

    PubMed

    Yu, Jun; Wang, Lu; Weng, Shi-Jun; Yang, Xiong-Li; Zhang, Dao-Qi; Zhong, Yong-Mei

    2013-01-01

    Impairment of visual function has been detected in the early stage of diabetes but the underlying neural mechanisms involved are largely unknown. Morphological and functional alterations of retinal ganglion cells, the final output neurons of the vertebrate retina, are thought to be the major cause of visual defects in diabetes but direct evidence to support this notion is limited. In this study we investigated functional changes of retinal ganglion cells in a type 1-like diabetic mouse model. Our results demonstrated that the spontaneous spiking activity of ON-type retinal ganglion cells was increased in streptozotocin-diabetic mice after 3 to 4 months of diabetes. At this stage of diabetes, no apoptotic signals or cell loss were detected in the ganglion cell layer of the retina, suggesting that the functional alterations in ganglion cells occur prior to massive ganglion cell apoptosis. Furthermore, we found that the increased activity of ON-type ganglion cells was mainly a result of reduced inhibitory signaling to the cells in diabetes. This novel mechanism provides insight into how visual function is impaired in diabetic retinopathy. PMID:24069457

  4. Hyperactivity of ON-Type Retinal Ganglion Cells in Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetic Mice

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Jun; Wang, Lu; Weng, Shi-Jun; Yang, Xiong-Li; Zhang, Dao-Qi; Zhong, Yong-Mei

    2013-01-01

    Impairment of visual function has been detected in the early stage of diabetes but the underlying neural mechanisms involved are largely unknown. Morphological and functional alterations of retinal ganglion cells, the final output neurons of the vertebrate retina, are thought to be the major cause of visual defects in diabetes but direct evidence to support this notion is limited. In this study we investigated functional changes of retinal ganglion cells in a type 1-like diabetic mouse model. Our results demonstrated that the spontaneous spiking activity of ON-type retinal ganglion cells was increased in streptozotocin-diabetic mice after 3 to 4 months of diabetes. At this stage of diabetes, no apoptotic signals or cell loss were detected in the ganglion cell layer of the retina, suggesting that the functional alterations in ganglion cells occur prior to massive ganglion cell apoptosis. Furthermore, we found that the increased activity of ON-type ganglion cells was mainly a result of reduced inhibitory signaling to the cells in diabetes. This novel mechanism provides insight into how visual function is impaired in diabetic retinopathy. PMID:24069457

  5. Retinal ganglion cells are autonomous circadian oscillators synthesizing N-acetylserotonin during the day.

    PubMed

    Garbarino-Pico, Eduardo; Carpentieri, Agata R; Contin, Maria A; Sarmiento, María I Keller; Brocco, Marcela A; Panzetta, Pedro; Rosenstein, Ruth E; Caputto, Beatriz L; Guido, Mario E

    2004-12-01

    Retinal ganglion cells send visual and circadian information to the brain regarding the environmental light-dark cycles. We investigated the capability of retinal ganglion cells of synthesizing melatonin, a highly reliable circadian marker that regulates retinal physiology, as well as the capacity of these cells to function as autonomous circadian oscillators. Chick retinal ganglion cells presented higher levels of melatonin assessed by radioimmunoassay during both the subjective day in constant darkness and the light phase of a light-dark cycle. Similar changes were observed in mRNA levels and activity of arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase, a key enzyme in melatonin biosynthesis, with the highest levels of both parameters during the subjective day. These daily variations were preceded by the elevation of cyclic-AMP content, the second messenger involved in the regulation of melatonin biosynthesis. Moreover, cultures of immunopurified retinal ganglion cells at embryonic day 8 synchronized by medium exchange synthesized a [3H]melatonin-like indole from [3H]tryptophan. This [3H]indole was rapidly released to the culture medium and exhibited a daily variation, with levels peaking 8 h after synchronization, which declined a few hours later. Cultures of embryonic retinal ganglion cells also showed self-sustained daily rhythms in arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase mRNA expression during at least three cycles with a period near 24 h. These rhythms were also observed after the application of glutamate. The results demonstrate that chick retinal ganglion cells may function as autonomous circadian oscillators synthesizing a melatonin-like indole during the day. PMID:15448149

  6. Retinal ganglion cell axons regenerate in the presence of intact sensory fibres.

    PubMed

    King, Carolyn; Bartlett, Carole; Sauvé, Yves; Lund, Ray; Dunlop, Sarah; Beazley, Lyn

    2006-02-01

    A novel allograft paradigm was used to test whether adult mammalian central axons regenerate within a peripheral nerve environment containing intact sensory axons. Retinal ganglion cell axon regeneration was compared following anastomosis of dorsal root ganglia grafts or conventional peripheral nerve grafts to the adult rat optic nerve. Dorsal root ganglia grafts comprised intact sensory and degenerate motor axons, whereas conventional grafts comprised both degenerating sensory and motor axons. Retinal ganglion cell axons were traced after 2 months. Dorsal root ganglia survived with their axons persisting throughout the graft. Comparable numbers of retinal ganglion cells regenerated axons into both dorsal root ganglia (1053+/-223) and conventional grafts (1323+/-881; P>0.05). The results indicate that an intact sensory environment supports central axon regeneration. PMID:16407770

  7. Correlation in the Discharges of Neighboring Rat Retinal Ganglion Cells During Prenatal Life

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maffei, Lamberto; Galli-Resta, Lucia

    1990-04-01

    The spontaneous discharges of neighboring retinal ganglion cells were recorded simultaneously in anesthetized prenatal rats between embryonic days 18 and 21. We report here that in the majority of cases the firings of neighboring retinal ganglion cells are strongly correlated during prenatal life. Correlation in the discharges of neighboring cells during development has long been suggested as a way to consolidate synaptic connections with a target cell onto which they converge, a model first proposed by Hebb. Correlation in the activities of neighboring neurons in the retina could be the basis of developmental processes such as refinement of retinotopic maps in the brain and segregation of the inputs from the two eyes.

  8. The relation between resolution measurements and numbers of retinal ganglion cells in the same human subjects.

    PubMed

    Popovic, Zoran; Sjöstrand, Johan

    2005-08-01

    Limiting factors of resolution have previously only been investigated by using resolution data and retinal ganglion cell spacing data from different individuals. We report on our unique opportunity to study the intra-individual relationship in three human subjects between retinal ganglion cell separations and resolution thresholds, measured with high-pass resolution perimetry. Our data show that resolution is directly proportional to half the midget population, in accordance with the hypothesis that a dichotomous midget ON/OFF population mediates resolution. PMID:15924946

  9. A precisely timed asynchronous pattern of ON and OFF retinal ganglion cell activity during propagation of retinal waves

    PubMed Central

    Kerschensteiner, Daniel; Wong, Rachel O.L.

    2008-01-01

    Summary Patterns of coordinated spontaneous activity have been proposed to guide circuit refinement in many parts of the developing nervous system. It is unclear, however, how such patterns, which are thought to indiscriminately synchronize nearby cells, could provide the cues necessary to segregate functionally distinct circuits within overlapping cell populations. Here we report that glutamatergic retinal waves possess a novel substructure in the bursting of neighboring retinal ganglion cells with opposite light responses (ON or OFF). Within a wave, cells fire repetitive non-overlapping bursts in a fixed order: ON before OFF. This pattern is absent from cholinergic waves, which precede glutamate-dependent activity, providing a developmental sequence of distinct activity-encoded cues. Asynchronous bursting of ON and OFF retinal ganglion cells depends on inhibition between these parallel pathways. Similar asynchronous activity patterns could arise throughout the nervous system as inhibition matures and might help to separate connections of functionally distinct subnetworks. PMID:18579076

  10. Ganglion cell distribution and retinal resolution in the Florida manatee, Trichechus manatus latirostris.

    PubMed

    Mass, Alla M; Ketten, Darlene R; Odell, Daniel K; Supin, Alexander Ya

    2012-01-01

    The topographic organization of retinal ganglion cells was examined in the Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris) to assess ganglion cell size and distribution and to estimate retinal resolution. The ganglion cell layer of the manatee's retina was comprised primarily of large neurons with broad intercellular spaces. Cell sizes varied from 10 to 60 μm in diameter (mean 24.3 μm). The retinal wholemounts from adult animals measured 446-501 mm(2) in area with total ganglion cell counts of 62,000-81,800 (mean 70,200). The cell density changed across the retina, with the maximum in the area below the optic disc and decreasing toward the retinal edges and in the immediate vicinity of the optic disc. The maximum cell density ranged from 235 to 337 cells per millimeter square in the adult retinae. Two wholemounts obtained from juvenile animals were 271 and 282 mm(2) in area with total cell numbers of 70,900 and 68,700, respectively (mean 69,800), that is, nearly equivalent to those of adults, but juvenile retinae consequently had maximum cell densities that were higher than those of adults: 478 and 491 cells per millimeter square. Calculations indicate a retinal resolution of ∼19' (1.6 cycles per degree) in both adult and juvenile retinae. PMID:21964938

  11. Short-wavelength cone-opponent retinal ganglion cells in mammals

    PubMed Central

    MARSHAK, DAVID W.; MILLS, STEPHEN L.

    2014-01-01

    In all of the mammalian species studied to date, the short-wavelength-sensitive (S) cones and the S-cone bipolar cells that receive their input are very similar, but the retinal ganglion cells that receive synapses from the S-cone bipolar cells appear to be quite different. Here, we review the literature on mammalian retinal ganglion cells that respond selectively to stimulation of S-cones and respond with opposite polarity to longer wavelength stimuli. There are at least three basic mechanisms to generate these color-opponent responses, including: (1) opponency is generated in the outer plexiform layer by horizontal cells and is conveyed to the ganglion cells via S-cone bipolar cells, (2) inputs from bipolar cells with different cone inputs and opposite response polarity converge directly on the ganglion cells, and (3) inputs from S-cone bipolar cells are inverted by S-cone amacrine cells. These are not mutually exclusive; some mammalian ganglion cells that respond selectively to S-cone stimulation seem to utilize at least two of them. Based on these findings, we suggest that the small bistratified ganglion cells described in primates are not the ancestral type, as proposed previously. Instead, the known types of ganglion cells in this pathway evolved from monostratified ancestral types and became bistratified in some mammalian lineages. PMID:24759445

  12. Short-wavelength cone-opponent retinal ganglion cells in mammals.

    PubMed

    Marshak, David W; Mills, Stephen L

    2014-03-01

    In all of the mammalian species studied to date, the short-wavelength-sensitive (S) cones and the S-cone bipolar cells that receive their input are very similar, but the retinal ganglion cells that receive synapses from the S-cone bipolar cells appear to be quite different. Here, we review the literature on mammalian retinal ganglion cells that respond selectively to stimulation of S-cones and respond with opposite polarity to longer wavelength stimuli. There are at least three basic mechanisms to generate these color-opponent responses, including: (1) opponency is generated in the outer plexiform layer by horizontal cells and is conveyed to the ganglion cells via S-cone bipolar cells, (2) inputs from bipolar cells with different cone inputs and opposite response polarity converge directly on the ganglion cells, and (3) inputs from S-cone bipolar cells are inverted by S-cone amacrine cells. These are not mutually exclusive; some mammalian ganglion cells that respond selectively to S-cone stimulation seem to utilize at least two of them. Based on these findings, we suggest that the small bistratified ganglion cells described in primates are not the ancestral type, as proposed previously. Instead, the known types of ganglion cells in this pathway evolved from monostratified ancestral types and became bistratified in some mammalian lineages. PMID:24759445

  13. Mitochondrial Uncoupling Protein 2 (UCP2) Regulates Retinal Ganglion Cell Number and Survival.

    PubMed

    Barnstable, Colin J; Reddy, Rajini; Li, Hong; Horvath, Tamas L

    2016-04-01

    In the brain, mitochondrial uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) has emerged as a stress signal associated with neuronal survival. In the retina, UCP2 is expressed primarily by retinal ganglion cells. Here, we investigated the functional relevance of UCP2 in the mouse retina. Increased expression of UCP2 significantly reduced apoptosis during the critical developmental period resulting in elevated numbers of retinal ganglion cells in the adult. Elevated UCP2 levels also protected against excitotoxic cell death induced by intraocular injection of either NMDA or kainic acid. In monolayer cultures of retinal cells, elevated UCP2 levels increased cell survival and rendered the cells independent of the survival-promoting effects of the neurotrophic factors BDNF and CNTF. Taken together, these data implicate UCP2 as an important regulator of retinal neuron survival both during development and in adult animals. PMID:26846222

  14. Overexpression of Pax6 results in microphthalmia, retinal dysplasia and defective retinal ganglion cell axon guidance

    PubMed Central

    Manuel, Martine; Pratt, Thomas; Liu, Min; Jeffery, Glen; Price, David J

    2008-01-01

    Background The transcription factor Pax6 is expressed by many cell types in the developing eye. Eyes do not form in homozygous loss-of-function mouse mutants (Pax6Sey/Sey) and are abnormally small in Pax6Sey/+ mutants. Eyes are also abnormally small in PAX77 mice expressing multiple copies of human PAX6 in addition to endogenous Pax6; protein sequences are identical in the two species. The developmental events that lead to microphthalmia in PAX77 mice are not well-characterised, so it is not clear whether over- and under-expression of Pax6/PAX6 cause microphthalmia through similar mechanisms. Here, we examined the consequences of over-expression for the eye and its axonal connections. Results Eyes form in PAX77+/+ embryos but subsequently degenerate. At E12.5, we found no abnormalities in ocular morphology, retinal cell cycle parameters and the incidence of retinal cell death. From E14.5 on, we observed malformations of the optic disc. From E16.5 into postnatal life there is progressively more severe retinal dysplasia and microphthalmia. Analyses of patterns of gene expression indicated that PAX77+/+ retinae produce a normal range of cell types, including retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). At E14.5 and E16.5, quantitative RT-PCR with probes for a range of molecules associated with retinal development showed only one significant change: a slight reduction in levels of mRNA encoding the secreted morphogen Shh at E16.5. At E16.5, tract-tracing with carbocyanine dyes in PAX77+/+ embryos revealed errors in intraretinal navigation by RGC axons, a decrease in the number of RGC axons reaching the thalamus and an increase in the proportion of ipsilateral projections among those RGC axons that do reach the thalamus. A survey of embryos with different Pax6/PAX6 gene dosage (Pax6Sey/+, Pax6+/+, PAX77+ and PAX77+/+) showed that (1) the total number of RGC axons projected by the retina and (2) the proportions that are sorted into the ipsilateral and contralateral optic tracts at the

  15. Displaced retinal ganglion cells in albino and pigmented rats

    PubMed Central

    Nadal-Nicolás, Francisco M.; Salinas-Navarro, Manuel; Jiménez-López, Manuel; Sobrado-Calvo, Paloma; Villegas-Pérez, María P.; Vidal-Sanz, Manuel; Agudo-Barriuso, Marta

    2014-01-01

    We have studied in parallel the population of displaced retinal ganglion cells (dRGCs) and normally placed (orthotopic RGCs, oRGCs) in albino and pigmented rats. Using retrograde tracing from the optic nerve, from both superior colliculi (SC) or from the ipsilateral SC in conjunction with Brn3 and melanopsin immunodetection, we report for the first time their total number and topography as well as the number and distribution of those dRGCs and oRGCs that project ipsi- or contralaterally and/or that express any of the three Brn3 isoforms or melanopsin. The total number of RGCs (oRGCs+dRGCs) is 84,706 ± 1249 in albino and 90,440 ± 2236 in pigmented, out of which 2383 and 2428 are melanopsin positive (m-RGCs), respectively. Regarding dRGCs: i/ albino rats have a significantly lower number of dRGCs than pigmented animals (0.5% of the total number of RGCs vs. 2.5%, respectively), ii/ dRGCs project massively to the contralateral SC, iii/ the percentage of ipsilaterality is higher for dRGCs than for oRGCs, iv/ a higher proportion of ipsilateral dRGCs is observed in albino than pigmented animals, v/ dRGC topography is very specific, they predominate in the equatorial temporal retina, being densest where the oRGCs are densest, vi/ Brn3a detects all dRGCs except half of the ipsilateral ones and those that express melanopsin, vii/ the proportion of dRGCs that express Brn3b or Brn3c is slightly lower than in the oRGC population, viii/ a higher percentage of dRGCs (13% albino, 9% pigmented) than oRGCs (2.6%) express melanopsin, ix/ few m-RGCs (displaced and orthotopic) project to the ipsilateral SC, x/ the topography of m-dRGCs does not resemble the general distribution of dRGCs, xi/ The soma size in m-oRGCs ranges from 10 to 21 μm and in m-dRGCs from 8 to 15 μm, xii/ oRGCs and dRGCs have the same susceptibility to axonal injury and ocular hypertension. Although the role of mammalian dRGCs remains to be determined, our data suggest that they are not misplaced by an

  16. Changes in ganglion cell physiology during retinal degeneration influence excitability by prosthetic electrodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Alice; Ratliff, Charles; Sampath, Alapakkam; Weiland, James

    2016-04-01

    Objective. Here we investigate ganglion cell physiology in healthy and degenerating retina to test its influence on threshold to electrical stimulation. Approach. Age-related Macular Degeneration and Retinitis Pigmentosa cause blindness via outer retinal degeneration. Inner retinal pathways that transmit visual information to the central brain remain intact, so direct electrical stimulation from prosthetic devices offers the possibility for visual restoration. Since inner retinal physiology changes during degeneration, we characterize physiological properties and responses to electrical stimulation in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) of both wild type mice and the rd10 mouse model of retinal degeneration. Main results. Our aggregate results support previous observations that elevated thresholds characterize diseased retinas. However, a physiology-driven classification scheme reveals distinct sub-populations of ganglion cells with thresholds either normal or strongly elevated compared to wild-type. When these populations are combined, only a weakly elevated threshold with large variance is observed. The cells with normal threshold are more depolarized at rest and exhibit periodic oscillations. Significance. During degeneration, physiological changes in RGCs affect the threshold stimulation currents required to evoke action potentials.

  17. An efficient method that reveals both the dendrites and the soma mosaics of retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Zhan, X J; Troy, J B

    1997-03-01

    A method of using neurobiotin to stain both the dendrites and the soma mosaics of retinal ganglion cells in fresh retinae is described. This method is simple to use and efficient in revealing morphological details for a large number of retinal ganglion cells. It has five advantages over currently available staining methods. (1) It stains all ganglion cells in the whole retina or in a selected retinal area, permitting ganglion cell distributions across the retina to be obtained. (2) It reveals cell dendrites in great detail, especially in regions outside the area centralis. The dendritic field mosaics and, therefore the dendritic field coverage factors, of different ganglion cell types across the whole retina can be obtained easily. (3) It works reliably, efficiently, and does not require the expensive set-up or the pains-taking work needed when staining cells through intracellular injection. (4) It works under both in vivo and in vitro settings, permitting the use of retinae from animals sacrificed for other purposes and the use of postmortem human retinae. (5) The end product of the visualization process is optically dark and electron dense, permitting specimens to be examined under both light and electron microscopes. PMID:9128174

  18. Neuroprotective Effect of Tauroursodeoxycholic Acid on N-Methyl-D-Aspartate-Induced Retinal Ganglion Cell Degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Fernández-Sánchez, Laura; Rondón, Netxibeth; Esquiva, Gema; Germain, Francisco; de la Villa, Pedro; Cuenca, Nicolás

    2015-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cell degeneration underlies the pathophysiology of diseases affecting the retina and optic nerve. Several studies have previously evidenced the anti-apoptotic properties of the bile constituent, tauroursodeoxycholic acid, in diverse models of photoreceptor degeneration. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of systemic administration of tauroursodeoxycholic acid on N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-induced damage in the rat retina using a functional and morphological approach. Tauroursodeoxycholic acid was administered intraperitoneally before and after intravitreal injection of NMDA. Three days after insult, full-field electroretinograms showed reductions in the amplitudes of the positive and negative-scotopic threshold responses, scotopic a- and b-waves and oscillatory potentials. Quantitative morphological evaluation of whole-mount retinas demonstrated a reduction in the density of retinal ganglion cells. Systemic administration of tauroursodeoxycholic acid attenuated the functional impairment induced by NMDA, which correlated with a higher retinal ganglion cell density. Our findings sustain the efficacy of tauroursodeoxycholic acid administration in vivo, suggesting it would be a good candidate for the pharmacological treatment of degenerative diseases coursing with retinal ganglion cell loss. PMID:26379056

  19. A minute fraction of Syrian golden hamster retinal ganglion cells project bilaterally.

    PubMed

    Hsiao, K; Sachs, G M; Schneider, G E

    1984-02-01

    Bilaterally projecting retinal ganglion cells (BPRGCs) in the adult Syrian golden hamster were identified through the use of two retrogradely transported neuronal labels, horseradish peroxidase and Nuclear Yellow, placed separately in each optic tract. The distribution and size of doubly labeled retinal ganglion cells were characterized and their numbers were determined. Strict criteria were used to exclude artifactual doubly labeled cells. This work revealed that: (a) BPRGCs comprise less than 0.01% of the entire retinal ganglion cell population, averaging 7.4 (SD = 3) cells per retina; (b) BPRGCs are found primarily in the upper, peripheral retina and not along the vertical meridian or in the temporal crescent; and (c) BPRGCs correspond in size to ordinary retinal ganglion cells in their immediate vicinity, thus providing no evidence that they comprise a separate population of cells. Electrophysiological collision experiments were also performed, with stimulating electrodes in the two brachia of the superior colliculi and a recording electrode in one optic nerve. A collision effect was not detected, thus supporting the anatomical findings of rare bilateral branching of optic nerve axons. The occurrence of BPRGCs may reflect occasional ambiguities in the cues that guide axons through the chiasm. PMID:6199482

  20. Estimated retinal ganglion cell counts in glaucomatous eyes with localized retinal nerve fiber layer defects

    PubMed Central

    Tatham, Andrew J.; Weinreb, Robert N.; Zangwill, Linda M.; Liebmann, Jeffrey M.; Girkin, Christopher A.; Medeiros, Felipe A.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose To estimate retinal ganglion cell (RGC) losses associated with visible glaucomatous localized retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) defects. Design Observational cross-sectional study. Methods A multicenter study of 198 normal eyes (138 subjects) and 66 glaucomatous eyes (55 subjects) recruited from the Diagnostic Innovations in Glaucoma Study and African Descent and Glaucoma Evaluation Study. All eyes had standard automated perimetry (SAP), spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT) and fundus stereophotographs within 6 months. Glaucomatous eyes were included if localized RNFL defects were detected by masked grading of stereophotographs. The number of RGCs in each sector of a structure-function map was estimated using a previously published model combining RGC estimates from SAP and SD-OCT. The estimated percentage loss of RGCs (combined structure function index) was calculated. Results In glaucomatous eyes there were 136 sectors with visible RNFL defects and 524 sectors without visible RNFL defects. The commonest sectors with visible RNFL defects were inferior and inferotemporal sectors, followed by superior and superotemporal sectors. Eyes with visible RNFL defects had a mean estimated RGC count of 657,172 cells versus 968,883 cells in healthy eyes (P<0.001). The average combined structure function index in sectors with a visible RNFL defect (59±21%) was significantly higher than in sectors without a visible RNFL defect in glaucomatous eyes (15±29%, P<0.001) and higher than in healthy eyes (1±13%, P<0.001). Conclusions Although visible localized RNFL defects are often considered an early sign of glaucoma this study indicates that they are likely to be associated with large neuronal losses. PMID:23746612

  1. Homonymous Ganglion Cell Layer Thinning After Isolated Occipital Lesion: Macular OCT Demonstrates Transsynaptic Retrograde Retinal Degeneration.

    PubMed

    Meier, Paolo G; Maeder, Philippe; Kardon, Randy H; Borruat, François-Xavier

    2015-06-01

    A 48-year-old man was examined 24 months after medial and surgical treatment of an isolated well-circumscribed right occipital lobe abscess. An asymptomatic residual left homonymous inferior scotoma was present. Fundus examination revealed temporal pallor of both optic discs, and optical coherence tomography (OCT) revealed mild temporal loss of retinal nerve fiber layer in both eyes. No relative afferent pupillary defect was present. Assessment of the retinal ganglion cell layer demonstrated homonymous thinning in a pattern corresponding to the homonymous visual field loss. There were no abnormalities of the lateral geniculate nuclei or optic tracts on review of the initial brain computed tomography and follow-up magnetic resonance imaging. We believe our patient showed evidence of transsynaptic retrograde degeneration after an isolated right occipital lobe lesion, and the homonymous neuronal loss was detected on OCT by assessing the retinal ganglion cell layer. PMID:25285723

  2. Msx2 alters the timing of retinal ganglion cells fate commitment and differentiation

    SciTech Connect

    Jiang, Shao-Yun; Wang, Jian-Tao; Dohney Eye Institute, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, 1355 San Pablo Street, DOH 314, Los Angeles, CA 90033

    2010-05-14

    Timing of cell fate commitment determines distinct retinal cell types, which is believed to be controlled by a tightly coordinated regulatory program of proliferation, cell cycle exit and differentiation. Although homeobox protein Msx2 could induce apoptosis of optic vesicle, it is unclear whether Msx2 regulates differentiation and cell fate commitment of retinal progenitor cells (RPCs) to retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). In this study, we show that overexpression of Msx2 transiently suppressed the expression of Cyclin D1 and blocked cell proliferation. Meanwhile, overexpression of Msx2 delayed the expression of RGC-specific differentiation markers (Math5 and Brn3b), which showed that Msx2 could affect the timing of RGCs fate commitment and differentiation by delaying the timing of cell cycle exit of retinal progenitors. These results indicate Msx2 possesses dual regulatory functions in controlling cell cycle progression of retinal RPCs and timing of RGCs differentiation.

  3. Effect of Stimulus Waveform of Biphasic Current Pulse on Retinal Ganglion Cell Responses in Retinal Degeneration (rd1) mice

    PubMed Central

    Ahn, Kun No; Ahn, Jeong Yeol; Kim, Jae-hyung; Cho, Kyoungrok; Koo, Kyo-in; Senok, Solomon S.

    2015-01-01

    A retinal prosthesis is being developed for the restoration of vision in patients with retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Determining optimal electrical stimulation parameters for the prosthesis is one of the most important elements for the development of a viable retinal prosthesis. Here, we investigated the effects of different charge-balanced biphasic pulses with regard to their effectiveness in evoking retinal ganglion cell (RGC) responses. Retinal degeneration (rd1) mice were used (n=17). From the ex-vivo retinal preparation, retinal patches were placed ganglion cell layer down onto an 8×8 multielectrode array (MEA) and RGC responses were recorded while applying electrical stimuli. For asymmetric pulses, 1st phase of the pulse is the same with symmetric pulse but the amplitude of 2nd phase of the pulse is less than 10 µA and charge balanced condition is satisfied by lengthening the duration of the pulse. For intensities (or duration) modulation, duration (or amplitude) of the pulse was fixed to 500 µs (30 µA), changing the intensities (or duration) from 2 to 60 µA (60 to 1000 µs). RGCs were classified as response-positive when PSTH showed multiple (3~4) peaks within 400 ms post stimulus and the number of spikes was at least 30% more than that for the immediate pre-stimulus 400 ms period. RGC responses were well modulated both with anodic and cathodic phase-1st biphasic pulses. Cathodic phase-1st pulses produced significantly better modulation of RGC activity than anodic phase-1st pulses regardless of symmetry of the pulse. PMID:25729279

  4. Ocular anatomy, ganglion cell distribution and retinal resolution of a killer whale (Orcinus orca).

    PubMed

    Mass, Alla M; Supin, Alexander Y; Abramov, Andrey V; Mukhametov, Lev M; Rozanova, Elena I

    2013-01-01

    Retinal topography, cell density and sizes of ganglion cells in the killer whale (Orcinus orca) were analyzed in retinal whole mounts stained with cresyl violet. A distinctive feature of the killer whale's retina is the large size of ganglion cells and low cell density compared to terrestrial mammals. The ganglion cell diameter ranged from 8 to 100 µm, with the majority of cells within a range of 20-40 µm. The topographic distribution of ganglion cells displayed two spots of high cell density located in the temporal and nasal quadrants, 20 mm from the optic disk. The high-density areas were connected by a horizontal belt-like area passing below the optic disk of the retina. Peak cell densities in these areas were evaluated. Mean peak cell densities were 334 and 288 cells/mm(2) in the temporal and nasal high-density areas, respectively. With a posterior nodal distance of 19.5 mm, these high-density data predict a retinal resolution of 9.6' (3.1 cycles/deg.) and 12.6' (2.4 cycles/deg.) in the temporal and nasal areas, respectively, in water. PMID:23018493

  5. Internalization and synaptogenic effect of GH in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs).

    PubMed

    Fleming, Thomas; Martínez-Moreno, Carlos G; Mora, Janeth; Aizouki, Miray; Luna, Maricela; Arámburo, Carlos; Harvey, Steve

    2016-08-01

    In the chicken embryo, GH gene expression occurs in the neural retina and retinal GH promotes cell survival and induces axonal growth of retinal ganglion cells. Neuroretinal GH is therefore of functional importance before the appearance of somatotrophs and the onset of pituitary GH secretion to the peripheral plasma (at ED15-17). Endocrine actions of pituitary GH in the development and function of the chicken embryo eye are, however, unknown. This possibility has therefore been investigated in ED15 embryos and using the quail neuroretinal derived cell line (QNR/D). During this research, we studied for the first time, the coexistence of exogenous (endocrine) and local GH (autocrine/paracrine) in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). In ovo systemic injections of Cy3-labeled GH demonstrated that GH in the embryo bloodstream was translocated into the neural retina and internalized into RGC's. Pituitary GH may therefore be functionally involved in retinal development during late embryogenesis. Cy3-labelled GH was similarly internalized into QNR/D cells after its addition into incubation media. The uptake of exogenous GH was by a receptor-mediated mechanism and maximal after 30-60min. The exogenous (endocrine) GH induced STAT5 phosphorylation and increased growth associated protein 43 (GAP43) and SNAP-25 immunoreactivity. Ex ovo intravitreal injections of Cy3-GH in ED12 embryos resulted in GH internalization and STAT5 activation. Interestingly, the CY3-labeled GH accumulated in perinuclear regions of the QNR/D cells, but was not found in the cytoplasm of neurite outgrowths, in which endogenous retinal GH is located. This suggests that exogenous (endocrine) and local (autocrine/paracrine) GH are both involved in retinal function in late embryogenesis but they co-exist in separate intracellular compartments within retinal ganglion cells. PMID:27036926

  6. A Dopamine- and Protein Kinase A-Dependent Mechanism for Network Adaptation in Retinal Ganglion Cells

    PubMed Central

    Vaquero, C. F.; Pignatelli, A.; Partida, G. J.; Ishida, A. T.

    2011-01-01

    Vertebrates can detect light intensity changes in vastly different photic environments, in part, because post-receptoral neurons undergo “network adaptation”. Previous data implicated dopaminergic, cAMP-dependent inhibition of retinal ganglion cells in this process, yet left unclear how this occurs, and whether this occurs in darkness versus light. To test for light- and dopamine-dependent changes in ganglion cell cAMP levels in situ, we immunostained dark- and light-adapted retinas with anti-cAMP antisera, in the presence and absence of various dopamine receptor ligands. To test for direct effects of dopamine receptor ligands and membrane-permeable protein kinase ligands on ganglion cell excitability, we recorded spikes from isolated ganglion cells in perforated-patch whole-cell mode, before and during application of these agents by microperfusion. Our immunostainings show that light, endogenous dopamine, and exogenous dopamine elevate ganglion cell cAMP levels in situ by activating D1-type dopamine receptors. Our spike recordings show that D1-type agonists and 8-bromo cAMP reduce spike frequency and curtail sustained spike firing, and that these effects entail protein kinase A activation. These effects resemble those of background light on ganglion cell responses to light flashes. Network adaptation could thus be produced, to some extent, by dopaminergic modulation of ganglion cell spike generation, a mechanism distinct from modulation of transmitter release onto ganglion cells or of transmitter-gated currents in ganglion cells. Combining these observations, with results obtained in studies of photoreceptor, bipolar, and horizontal cells, indicates that all three layers of neurons in the retina are equipped with mechanisms for adaptation to ambient light. PMID:11606650

  7. Neuroprotective Effect of Lutein on NMDA-Induced Retinal Ganglion Cell Injury in Rat Retina.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Chanjuan; Wang, Zhen; Zhao, Jiayi; Li, Qin; Huang, Cuiqin; Zhu, Lihong; Lu, Daxiang

    2016-05-01

    Lutein injection is a possible therapeutic approach for retinal diseases, but the molecular mechanism of its neuroprotective effect remains to be elucidated. The aim of this study was to investigate its protective effects in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) against N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-induced retinal damage in vivo. Retinal damage was induced by intravitreal NMDA injection in rats. Each animal was given five daily intraperitoneal injections of Lutein or vehicle along with intravitreal NMDA injections. Electroretinograms were recorded. The number of viable RGCs was quantified using the retinal whole-mount method by immunofluorescence. Proteins were measured by Western blot assays. Lutein reduced the retinal damage and improved the response to light, as shown by an animal behavior assay (the black-and-white box method) in rats. Furthermore, Lutein treatment prevented the NMDA-induced reduction in phNR wave amplitude. Lutein increased RGC number after NMDA-induced retina damage. Most importantly, Bax, cytochrome c, p-p38 MAPK, and p-c-Jun were all upregulated in rats injected with NMDA, but these expression patterns were reversed by continuous Lutein uptake. Bcl-2, p-GSK-3β, and p-Akt in the Lutein-treated eyes were increased compared with the NMDA group. Lutein has neuroprotective effects against retinal damage, its protective effects may be partly mediated by its anti-excitability neurotoxicity, through MAPKs and PI3K/Akt signaling, suggesting a potential approach for suppressing retinal neural damage. PMID:26119305

  8. Effects of low level laser treatment on the survival of axotomized retinal ganglion cells in adult Hamsters

    PubMed Central

    So, Kwok-Fai; Leung, Mason Chin Pang; Cui, Qi

    2014-01-01

    Injury to axons close to the neuronal bodies in the mammalian central nervous system causes a large proportion of parenting neurons to degenerate. It is known that optic nerve transection close to the eye in rodents leads to a loss of about half of retinal ganglion cells in 1 week and about 90% in 2 weeks. Using low level laser treatment in the present study, we demonstrated that treatment with helium-neon (660 nm) laser with 15 mW power could delay retinal ganglion cell death after optic nerve axotomy in adult hamsters. The effect was most apparent in the first week with a short period of treatment time (5 minutes) in which 65–66% of retinal ganglion cells survived the optic nerve axotomy whereas 45–47% of retinal ganglion cells did so in optic nerve axotomy controls. We also found that single dose and early commencement of laser irradiation were important in protecting retinal ganglion cells following optic nerve axotomy. These findings thus convincingly show that appropriate laser treatment may be neuroprotective to retinal ganglion cells. PMID:25558230

  9. Effects of low level laser treatment on the survival of axotomized retinal ganglion cells in adult Hamsters.

    PubMed

    So, Kwok-Fai; Leung, Mason Chin Pang; Cui, Qi

    2014-11-01

    Injury to axons close to the neuronal bodies in the mammalian central nervous system causes a large proportion of parenting neurons to degenerate. It is known that optic nerve transection close to the eye in rodents leads to a loss of about half of retinal ganglion cells in 1 week and about 90% in 2 weeks. Using low level laser treatment in the present study, we demonstrated that treatment with helium-neon (660 nm) laser with 15 mW power could delay retinal ganglion cell death after optic nerve axotomy in adult hamsters. The effect was most apparent in the first week with a short period of treatment time (5 minutes) in which 65-66% of retinal ganglion cells survived the optic nerve axotomy whereas 45-47% of retinal ganglion cells did so in optic nerve axotomy controls. We also found that single dose and early commencement of laser irradiation were important in protecting retinal ganglion cells following optic nerve axotomy. These findings thus convincingly show that appropriate laser treatment may be neuroprotective to retinal ganglion cells. PMID:25558230

  10. Retinal ganglion cell projections to the hamster suprachiasmatic nucleus, intergeniculate leaflet, and visual midbrain: bifurcation and melanopsin immunoreactivity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morin, Lawrence P.; Blanchard, Jane H.; Provencio, Ignacio

    2003-01-01

    The circadian clock in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) receives direct retinal input via the retinohypothalamic tract (RHT), and the retinal ganglion cells contributing to this projection may be specialized with respect to direct regulation of the circadian clock. However, some ganglion cells forming the RHT bifurcate, sending axon collaterals to the intergeniculate leaflet (IGL) through which light has secondary access to the circadian clock. The present studies provide a more extensive examination of ganglion cell bifurcation and evaluate whether ganglion cells projecting to several subcortical visual nuclei contain melanopsin, a putative ganglion cell photopigment. The results showed that retinal ganglion cells projecting to the SCN send collaterals to the IGL, olivary pretectal nucleus, and superior colliculus, among other places. Melanopsin-immunoreactive (IR) ganglion cells are present in the hamster retina, and some of these cells project to the SCN, IGL, olivary pretectal nucleus, or superior colliculus. Triple-label analysis showed that melanopsin-IR cells bifurcate and project bilaterally to each SCN, but not to the other visual nuclei evaluated. The melanopsin-IR cells have photoreceptive characteristics optimal for circadian rhythm regulation. However, the presence of moderately widespread bifurcation among ganglion cells projecting to the SCN, and projection by melanopsin-IR cells to locations distinct from the SCN and without known rhythm function, suggest that this ganglion cell type is generalized, rather than specialized, with respect to the conveyance of photic information to the brain. Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  11. The trophic effect of ouabain on retinal ganglion cells is mediated by IL-1β and TNF-α.

    PubMed

    Salles von-Held-Ventura, Juliana; Mázala-de-Oliveira, Thalita; Cândida da Rocha Oliveira, Amanda; Granja, Marcelo Gomes; Gonçalves-de-Albuquerque, Cassiano Felippe; Castro-Faria-Neto, Hugo Caire; Giestal-de-Araujo, Elizabeth

    2016-09-01

    Ouabain is a steroid hormone that binds to the enzyme Na(+), K(+) - ATPase and stimulates different intracellular pathways controlling growth, proliferation and cell survival. IL-1β and TNF-α are pleiotropic molecules, conventionally regarded as pro-inflammatory cytokines with well-known effects in the immune system. In addition, IL-1β and TNF-α also play important roles in the nervous system including neuroprotective effects. Previous data from our group showed that ouabain treatment is able to induce an increase in retinal ganglion cell survival kept in mixed retinal cell cultures. The aim of this work was to investigate if IL-1β and TNF-α could be mediating the trophic effect of ouabain on retinal ganglion cells. Our results show that the trophic effect of ouabain on retinal ganglion cell was inhibited by either anti-IL-1β or anti-TNF-α antibodies. In agreement, IL-1β or TNF-α increased the retinal ganglion cells survival in a dose-dependent manner. Accordingly, ouabain treatment induces a temporal release of TNF-α and IL-1β from retinal cell cultures. Interestingly, TNF-α and IL-1β regulate each other intracellular levels. Our results suggest that ouabain treatment triggers the activation of TNF-α and IL-1β signaling pathways leading to an increase in retinal ganglion cell survival. PMID:27412645

  12. Signaling Networks of Retinal Ganglion Cell Formation and the Potential Application of Stem Cell-Based Therapy in Retinal Degenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Wu, Nan; Wang, Yi; Yang, Lanbo; Cho, Kin-Sang

    2016-08-01

    Retinal degenerative diseases such as age-related macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, and glaucoma result in permanent loss of retinal neurons and vision. Stem cell therapy could be a novel treatment strategy to restore visual function. In an ideal situation, a homogenous population of stem cell-derived retinal neurons with high purity is used for replacement therapy. Thus, it is crucial to elucidate the molecular mechanisms that regulate the development of retinal progenitor cells and subsequent generation of specific retinal neurons. Here, recent findings concerning the intrinsic and extrinsic factors that regulate retinal progenitor cell maintenance and differentiation are summarized, especially transcriptional factors and extrinsic signals. Understanding these mechanisms is indispensable because they have potential clinical applications, chiefly the generation of specific retinal cells such as retinal ganglion cells to treat glaucoma and other optic neuropathy diseases. PMID:27466076

  13. Ganglion cells density and retinal resolution in the sea otter, Enhydra lutris.

    PubMed

    Mass, A M; Supin, A Y

    2000-03-01

    The topographic distribution, density, and size of ganglion cells were studied in retinal wholemounts of the sea otter, Enhydra lutris. The cell distribution showed a well defined horizontal streak of higher cell density, and within this streak, a narrow area of the highest cell density. The peak cell density in this area ranged from 4050 to 4400 cells/mm(2), with a mean of 4225 cells/mm(2). The ganglion cell size ranged from 7 microm to 47 microm but the majority of cells were 7 to 30 microm. Cell size distribution revealed three size groups: 7-16, 17-28, and 29-47 microm. The highest-density area contained mainly small (7-16 microm) cells. The cell-density data predict a retinal resolution around 7' in water. Retinal organization in the sea otter exhibits more properties common with terrestrial rather than aquatic mammals, both in terms of ganglion cell characteristics and in terms of their topographic distribution. PMID:10899706

  14. Moniliform Deformation of Retinal Ganglion Cells by Formaldehyde-Based Fixatives

    PubMed Central

    Stradleigh, Tyler W.; Greenberg, Kenneth P.; Partida, Gloria J.; Pham, Aaron; Ishida, Andrew T.

    2014-01-01

    Protocols for characterizing cellular phenotypes commonly use chemical fixatives to preserve anatomical features, mechanically stabilize tissue, and stop physiological responses. Formaldehyde, diluted in either phosphate-buffered saline or phosphate buffer, has been widely used in studies of neurons, especially in conjunction with dyes and antibodies. However, previous studies have reported that these fixatives induce the formation of bead-like varicosities in the dendrites and axons of brain and spinal cord neurons. We report here that these formaldehyde formulations can induce bead formation in the dendrites and axons of adult rat and rabbit retinal ganglion cells, and that retinal ganglion cells differ from hippocampal, cortical, cerebellar, and spinal cord neurons in that bead formation is not blocked by glutamate receptor antagonists, a voltage-gated Na+ channel toxin, extracellular Ca2+ ion exclusion, or temperature shifts. Moreover, we describe a modification of formaldehyde-based fixatives that prevents bead formation in retinal ganglion cells visualized by green fluorescent protein expression and by immunohistochemistry. PMID:25283775

  15. Allogeneic Transplantation of Müller-Derived Retinal Ganglion Cells Improves Retinal Function in a Feline Model of Ganglion Cell Depletion

    PubMed Central

    Becker, Silke; Eastlake, Karen; Jayaram, Hari; Jones, Megan F.; Brown, Robert A.; McLellan, Gillian J.; Charteris, David G.; Khaw, Peng T.

    2016-01-01

    Human Müller glia with stem cell characteristics (hMGSCs) have been shown to improve retinal function upon transplantation into rat models of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) depletion. However, their translational potential may depend upon successful engraftment and improvement of retinal function in experimental models with anatomical and functional features resembling those of the human eye. We investigated the effect of allogeneic transplantation of feline Müller glia with the ability to differentiate into cells expressing RGC markers, following ablation of RGCs by N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA). Unlike previous observations in the rat, transplantation of hMGSC-derived RGCs into the feline vitreous formed aggregates and elicited a severe inflammatory response without improving visual function. In contrast, allogeneic transplantation of feline MGSC (fMGSC)-derived RGCs into the vitrectomized eye improved the scotopic threshold response (STR) of the electroretinogram (ERG). Despite causing functional improvement, the cells did not attach onto the retina and formed aggregates on peripheral vitreous remnants, suggesting that vitreous may constitute a barrier for cell attachment onto the retina. This was confirmed by observations that cellular scaffolds of compressed collagen and enriched preparations of fMGSC-derived RGCs facilitated cell attachment. Although cells did not migrate into the RGC layer or the optic nerve, they significantly improved the STR and the photopic negative response of the ERG, indicative of increased RGC function. These results suggest that MGSCs have a neuroprotective ability that promotes partial recovery of impaired RGC function and indicate that cell attachment onto the retina may be necessary for transplanted cells to confer neuroprotection to the retina. Significance Müller glia with stem cell characteristics are present in the adult human retina, but they do not have regenerative ability. These cells, however, have potential for

  16. Allogeneic Transplantation of Müller-Derived Retinal Ganglion Cells Improves Retinal Function in a Feline Model of Ganglion Cell Depletion.

    PubMed

    Becker, Silke; Eastlake, Karen; Jayaram, Hari; Jones, Megan F; Brown, Robert A; McLellan, Gillian J; Charteris, David G; Khaw, Peng T; Limb, G Astrid

    2016-02-01

    Human Müller glia with stem cell characteristics (hMGSCs) have been shown to improve retinal function upon transplantation into rat models of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) depletion. However, their translational potential may depend upon successful engraftment and improvement of retinal function in experimental models with anatomical and functional features resembling those of the human eye. We investigated the effect of allogeneic transplantation of feline Müller glia with the ability to differentiate into cells expressing RGC markers, following ablation of RGCs by N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA). Unlike previous observations in the rat, transplantation of hMGSC-derived RGCs into the feline vitreous formed aggregates and elicited a severe inflammatory response without improving visual function. In contrast, allogeneic transplantation of feline MGSC (fMGSC)-derived RGCs into the vitrectomized eye improved the scotopic threshold response (STR) of the electroretinogram (ERG). Despite causing functional improvement, the cells did not attach onto the retina and formed aggregates on peripheral vitreous remnants, suggesting that vitreous may constitute a barrier for cell attachment onto the retina. This was confirmed by observations that cellular scaffolds of compressed collagen and enriched preparations of fMGSC-derived RGCs facilitated cell attachment. Although cells did not migrate into the RGC layer or the optic nerve, they significantly improved the STR and the photopic negative response of the ERG, indicative of increased RGC function. These results suggest that MGSCs have a neuroprotective ability that promotes partial recovery of impaired RGC function and indicate that cell attachment onto the retina may be necessary for transplanted cells to confer neuroprotection to the retina. Significance: Müller glia with stem cell characteristics are present in the adult human retina, but they do not have regenerative ability. These cells, however, have potential for

  17. Exogenous glycosaminoglycans induce complete inversion of retinal ganglion cell bodies and their axons within the retinal neuroepithelium.

    PubMed Central

    Brittis, P A; Silver, J

    1994-01-01

    Prior to forming an axon, retinal ganglion cells retain a primitive radial configuration while maintaining ventricular and vitreal endfeet attachments. During their subsequent differentiation, ganglion cells polarize their cell body and axon only along the vitreal surface. When the ventricular surfaces of intact retinas in organ culture were exposed to free chondroitin sulfate (CS) in solution, both the cell body and nerve fiber layers were repolarized to the opposite side of the neuroepithelium. However, the basal lamina remained in its usual position. Thus, the ability to initiate an axon is not restricted to the vitreal endfoot region of differentiating neurons, and in addition, the radial position at which the axon emerges can be mediated by the location and concentration of the extracellular CS milieu. Images PMID:8052616

  18. A Self-Assembling Injectable Biomimetic Microenvironment Encourages Retinal Ganglion Cell Axon Extension in Vitro.

    PubMed

    Laughter, Melissa R; Ammar, David A; Bardill, James R; Pena, Brisa; Kahook, Malik Y; Lee, David J; Park, Daewon

    2016-08-17

    Sensory-somatic nervous system neurons, such as retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), are typically thought to be incapable of regenerating. However, it is now known that these cells may be stimulated to regenerate by providing them with a growth permissive environment. We have engineered an injectable microenvironment designed to provide growth-stimulating cues for RGC culture. Upon gelation, this injectable material not only self-assembles into laminar sheets, similar to retinal organization, but also possesses a storage modulus comparable to that of retinal tissue. Primary rat RGCs were grown, stained, and imaged in this three-dimensional scaffold. We were able to show that RGCs grown in this retina-like structure exhibited characteristic long, prominent axons. In addition, RGCs showed a consistent increase in average axon length and neurite-bearing ratio over the 7 day culture period, indicating this scaffold is capable of supporting substantial RGC axon extension. PMID:27434231

  19. Mouse models of retinal ganglion cell death and glaucoma

    PubMed Central

    McKinnon, Stuart J.; Schlamp, Cassandra L.; Nickells, Robert W.

    2011-01-01

    Once considered too difficult to use for glaucoma studies, mice are now becoming a powerful tool in the research of the molecular and pathological events associated with this disease. Often adapting technologies first developed in rats, ganglion cell death in mice can be induced using acute models and chronic models of experimental glaucoma. Similarly, elevated IOP has been reported in transgenic animals carrying defects in targeted genes. Also, one group of mice, from the DBA/2 line of inbred animals, develops a spontaneous optic neuropathy with many features of human glaucoma that is associated with IOP elevation caused by an anterior chamber pigmentary disease. The advent of mice for glaucoma research is already having a significant impact on our understanding of this disease, principally because of the access to genetic manipulation technology and genetics already well established for these animals. PMID:19105954

  20. Promotion on the differentiation of retinal Müller cells into retinal ganglion cells by Brn-3b

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Zhen-Kai; Cao, Lan; Zhang, Xue-Yong; Song, Wei-Tao; Xia, Xiao-Bo

    2016-01-01

    AIM To investigate the role of Brn-3b in differentiation process of stem cells derived from retinal Müller cells into the ganglion cell. METHODS The passage culture method of Müller cells from retina of newborn Sprague Dawley rats was carried out by repeated incomplete pancreatic enzyme digestion method. The cells were detected by fluorescence-activated cell sorter (FACS), immunohistochemistry technology and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) to determine the purity. The third passage of cells was induced in the serum-free dedifferentiation medium. The expression of the specific markers Ki-67 and nestin of retinal stem cells was measured by RT-PCR and Western blot. The cell proliferation of retinal stem cells was detected by 5-ethynyl-2′-deoxyuridine (Edu) staining. The cells were randomly divided into 5 groups as follows: group A: Brn-3bsiRNA group; group B: Brn-3b control siRNA group; group C: pGC-Brn-3b-green fluorescent protein (GFP) group; group D: pGC-GFP group; group E: control group (without any handling). The purified Müller cells were cultured for 3-7d, then, the percentage of ganglion cells was counted by immunofluorescence staining. RESULTS FACS demonstrated the purity of retinal Müller cells was more 97.44%. A few spherical cell spheres appeared. Immunofluorescence staining showed that stem cells within the spheres were positive for retinal stem cell-specific markers nestin (red fluorescence, 92.94%±6.48%) and Ki-67 (green fluorescence, 85.96%±6.04%). Meanwhile, RT-PCR analysis showed cell spheres in the culture to have expressed a battery of transcripts characteristic of stem cells such as nestin and Ki-67, which were absent in the Müller cells. Western blot analysis further confirmed the expression of nestin and Ki-67 in the cell spheres but not in the Müller cells. Edu staining showed most of the nuclei within the cell spheres were stained red (82.80%±6.65%), suggesting the new cell spheres had the capacity for

  1. Scene from above: retinal ganglion cell topography and spatial resolving power in the giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis).

    PubMed

    Coimbra, João Paulo; Hart, Nathan S; Collin, Shaun P; Manger, Paul R

    2013-06-15

    The giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) is a browser that uses its extensible tongue to selectively collect leaves during foraging. As the tallest extant terrestrial mammal, its elevated head height provides panoramic surveillance of the environment. These aspects of the giraffe's ecology and phenotype suggest that vision is of prime importance. Using Nissl-stained retinal wholemounts and stereological methods, we quantitatively assessed the retinal specializations in the ganglion cell layer of the giraffe. The mean total number of retinal ganglion cells was 1,393,779 and their topographic distribution revealed the presence of a horizontal visual streak and a temporal area. With a mean peak of 14,271 cells/mm(2), upper limits of spatial resolving power in the temporal area ranged from 25 to 27 cycles/degree. We also observed a dorsotemporal extension (anakatabatic area) that tapers toward the nasal retina giving rise to a complete dorsal arch. Using neurofilament-200 immunohistochemistry, we also detected a dorsal arch formed by alpha ganglion cells with density peaks in the temporal (14-15 cells/mm(2)) and dorsonasal (10 cells/mm(2)) regions. As with other artiodactyls, the giraffe shares the presence of a horizontal streak and a temporal area which, respectively, improve resolution along the horizon and in the frontal visual field. The dorsal arch is related to the giraffe's head height and affords enhanced resolution in the inferior visual field. The alpha ganglion cell distribution pattern is unique to the giraffe and enhances acquisition of motion information for the control of tongue movement during foraging and the detection of predators. PMID:23595815

  2. Seasonally Changing Cryptochrome 1b Expression in the Retinal Ganglion Cells of a Migrating Passerine Bird.

    PubMed

    Nießner, Christine; Gross, Julia Christina; Denzau, Susanne; Peichl, Leo; Fleissner, Gerta; Wiltschko, Wolfgang; Wiltschko, Roswitha

    2016-01-01

    Cryptochromes, blue-light absorbing proteins involved in the circadian clock, have been proposed to be the receptor molecules of the avian magnetic compass. In birds, several cryptochromes occur: Cryptochrome 2, Cryptochrome 4 and two splice products of Cryptochrome 1, Cry1a and Cry1b. With an antibody not distinguishing between the two splice products, Cryptochrome 1 had been detected in the retinal ganglion cells of garden warblers during migration. A recent study located Cry1a in the outer segments of UV/V-cones in the retina of domestic chickens and European robins, another migratory species. Here we report the presence of cryptochrome 1b (eCry1b) in retinal ganglion cells and displaced ganglion cells of European Robins, Erithacus rubecula. Immuno-histochemistry at the light microscopic and electron microscopic level showed eCry1b in the cell plasma, free in the cytosol as well as bound to membranes. This is supported by immuno-blotting. However, this applies only to robins in the migratory state. After the end of the migratory phase, the amount of eCry1b was markedly reduced and hardly detectable. In robins, the amount of eCry1b in the retinal ganglion cells varies with season: it appears to be strongly expressed only during the migratory period when the birds show nocturnal migratory restlessness. Since the avian magnetic compass does not seem to be restricted to the migratory phase, this seasonal variation makes a role of eCry1b in magnetoreception rather unlikely. Rather, it could be involved in physiological processes controlling migratory restlessness and thus enabling birds to perform their nocturnal flights. PMID:26953690

  3. Seasonally Changing Cryptochrome 1b Expression in the Retinal Ganglion Cells of a Migrating Passerine Bird

    PubMed Central

    Nießner, Christine; Gross, Julia Christina; Denzau, Susanne; Peichl, Leo; Fleissner, Gerta; Wiltschko, Wolfgang; Wiltschko, Roswitha

    2016-01-01

    Cryptochromes, blue-light absorbing proteins involved in the circadian clock, have been proposed to be the receptor molecules of the avian magnetic compass. In birds, several cryptochromes occur: Cryptochrome 2, Cryptochrome 4 and two splice products of Cryptochrome 1, Cry1a and Cry1b. With an antibody not distinguishing between the two splice products, Cryptochrome 1 had been detected in the retinal ganglion cells of garden warblers during migration. A recent study located Cry1a in the outer segments of UV/V-cones in the retina of domestic chickens and European robins, another migratory species. Here we report the presence of cryptochrome 1b (eCry1b) in retinal ganglion cells and displaced ganglion cells of European Robins, Erithacus rubecula. Immuno-histochemistry at the light microscopic and electron microscopic level showed eCry1b in the cell plasma, free in the cytosol as well as bound to membranes. This is supported by immuno-blotting. However, this applies only to robins in the migratory state. After the end of the migratory phase, the amount of eCry1b was markedly reduced and hardly detectable. In robins, the amount of eCry1b in the retinal ganglion cells varies with season: it appears to be strongly expressed only during the migratory period when the birds show nocturnal migratory restlessness. Since the avian magnetic compass does not seem to be restricted to the migratory phase, this seasonal variation makes a role of eCry1b in magnetoreception rather unlikely. Rather, it could be involved in physiological processes controlling migratory restlessness and thus enabling birds to perform their nocturnal flights. PMID:26953690

  4. Neuroprotective effects of minocycline against in vitro and in vivo retinal ganglion cell damage.

    PubMed

    Shimazawa, Masamitsu; Yamashima, Tetsumori; Agarwal, Neeraj; Hara, Hideaki

    2005-08-16

    The purpose of this study was to determine whether minocycline, a semi-synthetic tetracycline derivative, reduces (a) the in vitro neuronal damage occurring after serum deprivation in cultured retinal ganglion cells (RGC-5, a rat ganglion cell line transformed using E1A virus) and/or (b) the in vivo retinal damage induced by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) intravitreal injection in mice. In addition, we examined minocycline's putative mechanisms of action against oxidative stress and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. In vitro, retinal damage was induced by 24-h serum deprivation, and cell viability was measured by Hoechst 33342 staining or resazurin reduction assay. In cultures of RGC-5 cells maintained in serum-free medium for up to 24 h, the number of cells undergoing cell death was reduced by minocycline (0.2-20 microM). Serum deprivation resulted in increased oxidative stress, as revealed by an increase in the fluorescence intensity for 5-(and-6)-chloromethyl-2', 7'-dichlorodihydrofluorescein diacetate (CM-H2DCFDA), a reactive oxygen species (ROS) indicator. Minocycline at 2 and 20 microM inhibited this ROS production. However, even at 20 microM minocycline did not inhibit the retinal damage induced by tunicamycin (an ER stress inducer). Furthermore, in mice in vivo minocycline at 90 mg/kg intraperitoneally administered 60 min before an NMDA intravitreal injection reduced the NMDA-induced retinal damage. These findings indicate that minocycline has neuroprotective effects against in vitro and in vivo retinal damage, and that an inhibitory effect on ROS production may contribute to the underlying mechanisms. PMID:16051195

  5. Inhibition of Adult Rat Retinal Ganglion Cells by D1-type Dopamine Receptor Activation

    PubMed Central

    Hayashida, Yuki; Rodríguez, Carolina Varela; Ogata, Genki; Partida, Gloria J.; Oi, Hanako; Stradleigh, Tyler W.; Lee, Sherwin C.; Colado, Anselmo Felipe; Ishida, Andrew T.

    2011-01-01

    The spike output of neural pathways can be regulated by modulating output neuron excitability and/or their synaptic inputs. Dopaminergic interneurons synapse onto cells that route signals to mammalian retinal ganglion cells, but it is unknown whether dopamine can activate receptors in these ganglion cells and, if it does, how this affects their excitability. Here, we show D1a-receptor-like immunoreactivity in ganglion cells identified in adult rats by retrogradely transported dextran, and that dopamine, D1-type receptor agonists, and cAMP analogs inhibit spiking in ganglion cells dissociated from adult rats. These ligands curtailed repetitive spiking during constant current injections, and reduced the number and rate of rise of spikes elicited by fluctuating current injections without significantly altering the timing of the remaining spikes. Consistent with mediation by D1-type receptors, SCH-23390 reversed the effects of dopamine on spikes. Contrary to a recent report, spike inhibition by dopamine was not precluded by blocking Ih. Consistent with the reduced rate of spike rise, dopamine reduced voltage-gated Na+ current (INa) amplitude and tetrodotoxin, at doses that reduced INa as moderately as dopamine, also inhibited spiking. These results provide the first direct evidence that D1-type dopamine receptor activation can alter mammalian retinal ganglion cell excitability, and demonstrate that dopamine can modulate spikes in these cells by a mechanism different from the pre- and postsynaptic means proposed by previous studies. To our knowledge, our results also provide the first evidence that dopamine receptor activation can reduce excitability without altering the temporal precision of spike firing. PMID:19940196

  6. Somatic tetraploidy in specific chick retinal ganglion cells induced by nerve growth factor

    PubMed Central

    Morillo, Sandra M.; Escoll, Pedro; de la Hera, Antonio; Frade, José M.

    2009-01-01

    A subset of neurons in the normal vertebrate nervous system contains double the normal amount of DNA in their nuclei. These neurons are all thought to derive from aberrant mitoses in neuronal precursor cells. Here we show that endogenous NGF induces DNA replication in a subpopulation of differentiating chick retinal ganglion cells that express both the neurotrophin receptor p75 and the E2F1 transcription factor, but that lack the retinoblastoma protein. Many of these neurons avoid G2/M transition and remain alive in the retina as tetraploid cells with large cell somas and extensive dendritic trees, and most of them express β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits, a specific marker of retinal ganglion cells innervating lamina F in the stratum-griseum-et-fibrosum-superficiale of the tectal cortex. Tetraploid neurons were also observed in the adult mouse retina. Thus, a developmental program leading to somatic tetraploidy in specific retinal neurons exists in vertebrates. This program might occur in other vertebrate neurons during normal or pathological situations. PMID:20018664

  7. The sodium channel band shapes the response to electric stimulation in retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Jeng, J; Tang, S; Molnar, A; Desai, N J; Fried, S I

    2011-01-01

    To improve the quality of prosthetic vision, it is desirable to understand how targeted retinal neurons respond to stimulation. Unfortunately, the factors that shape the response of a single neuron to stimulation are not well understood. A dense band of voltage gated sodium channels within the proximal axon of retinal ganglion cells is the site most sensitive to electric stimulation, suggesting that band properties are likely to influence the response to stimulation. Here, we examined how three band properties influence sensitivity using a morphologically realistic ganglion cell model in NEURON. Longer bands were more sensitive to short-duration pulses than shorter bands and increasing the distance between band and soma also increased sensitivity. Simulations using the known limits of band length and location resulted in a sensitivity difference of approximately two. Additional simulations tested how changes to sodium channel conductance within the band influenced threshold and found that the sensitivity difference increased to a factor of nearly three. This is close to the factor of 5 difference measured in physiological studies suggesting that band properties contribute significantly to the sensitivity differences found between different types of retinal neurons. PMID:21558602

  8. Contribution of the GABAergic pathway(s) to the correlated activities of chicken retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xue; Zhou, Yi; Gong, Hai-Qing; Liang, Pei-Ji

    2007-10-26

    In the present study, the spatiotemporal pattern of chicken retinal ganglion cells' firing activity in response to full-field white light stimulation was investigated. Cross-correlation analysis showed that ganglion cells of sustained subtype fired in precise synchrony with their adjacent neurons of the same subtype (delay lag within 2 ms, narrow correlation). On the other hand, the activities of neighboring ganglion cells of transient subtype were correlated with distributed time lags (10-30 ms, medium correlation). Pharmacological studies demonstrated that the intensity of the medium correlations could be strengthened when exogenous GABA was applied and attenuated when GABA receptors were blocked by picrotoxin. Meanwhile, the GABAergic modulation on the narrow correlations was not consistent. These results suggest that, in the chicken retina, GABAergic pathway(s) are likely involved in the formation of medium correlations between ganglion cells. Neurons might fire at a lower rate but with higher level of synchronization to improve the efficiency of information transmission, with the mechanism involving the GABAergic inhibitory input. PMID:17919471

  9. Activity of retinal ganglion cells following intense, nanosecond laser flashes. Final report, 1983-1986

    SciTech Connect

    Glickman, R.D.

    1989-01-01

    The effects of intense, but nonlesion-producing, laser exposures of 20-ns duration were determined on the light responses and spontaneous activity of retinal ganglion cells recorded in situ from the rhesus monkey. (Following a single, 20-ns exposure centered on its receptive field, a ganglion cell produced an 'afterdischarge' of maintained action potentials). The duration of the afterdischarge depended on the diameter of the laser beam on the retina and on the beam's intensity. Laser exposures subtending 0.5 to 2.0 deg, and delivering 45 to 60% of the maximum permissible exposure, elicited afterdischarges that lasted up to 80 s. When the beam diameter was decreased to 0.25 deg, the afterdischarge was reduced to 30 s, and to less than 5 s with the 0.12-deg beam. Light sensitivity after the laser exposure recovered rapidly during the first 10 s and then more slowly, but exponentially, until it reached the preflash level. Color-opponent ganglion cells exhibited a phenomenon called 'response-reversal' after the laser exposure, presumably due to selective adaptation of a mid-wavelength cone-input. Because a 20-ns exposure, regardless of intensity, is likely to photoregenerate more than half of the available visual pigment, the effects of ganglion cell response described here are not likely to be due solely to pigment bleaching.

  10. Uniformity detector retinal ganglion cells fire complex spikes and receive only light-evoked inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Sivyer, Benjamin; Taylor, W. Rowland; Vaney, David I.

    2010-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cells convey information by increasing their firing in response to an optimal visual stimulus or “trigger feature.” However, one class of ganglion cell responds to changes in the visual scene by decreasing its firing. These cells, termed uniformity detectors in the rabbit retina, are encountered only rarely and the synaptic mechanisms underlying their unusual responses have not been investigated. In this study, patch-clamp recordings of uniformity detectors show that the action potentials underlying the maintained firing arise within “complex spikes.” Both ON and OFF visual stimuli elicit only inhibitory synaptic input, the immediate effect of which is to suppress the maintained firing. However, this inhibition also alters the properties of the “renascent” spiking by increasing the amplitude of the spikes within each burst, suggesting that the effect may increase the efficacy of spike propagation and transmission. PMID:20212117

  11. Delayed rectifier K channels contribute to contrast adaptation in mammalian retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Weick, Michael; Demb, Jonathan B.

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY Retinal ganglion cells adapt by reducing their sensitivity during periods of high contrast. Contrast adaptation in the firing response depends on both presynaptic and intrinsic mechanisms. Here, we investigated intrinsic mechanisms for contrast adaptation in OFF Alpha ganglion cells in the in vitro guinea pig retina. Using either visual stimulation or current injection, we show that brief depolarization evoked spiking and suppressed firing during subsequent depolarization. The suppression could be explained by Na channel inactivation, as shown in salamander cells. However, brief hyperpolarization in the physiological range (5–10 mV) also suppressed firing during subsequent depolarization. This suppression was sensitive selectively to blockers of delayed-rectifier K channels (KDR). Somatic membrane patches showed TEA-sensitive KDR currents with activation near −25 mV and removal of inactivation at voltages negative to Vrest. Brief periods of hyperpolarization apparently remove KDR inactivation and thereby increase the channel pool available to suppress excitability during subsequent depolarization. PMID:21745646

  12. Activation of autophagy and paraptosis in retinal ganglion cells after retinal ischemia and reperfusion injury in rats

    PubMed Central

    WEI, TING; KANG, QIANYAN; MA, BO; GAO, SHAN; LI, XUEYING; LIU, YONG

    2015-01-01

    Glaucoma is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by elevated intraocular pressure (IOP), which causes retinal ischemia and progressive neuronal death. Retinal ischemia/reperfusion (RIR) injury is a common clinical condition representing the main cause of irreversible visual field defects in humans. The aim of this study was to investigate whether non-apoptotic forms of programmed cell death (PCD) have an effect on RIR injury in an experimental model that replicates features of acute hypertensive glaucoma and to explore the possible underlying mechanisms. The activation of autophagy was investigated in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) following RIR in comparison with a control group, using immunofluorescence against microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 (LC3). RIR injury increased LC3 expression in the cytoplasm of RGCs in the ganglion cell layer (GCL) 6 h after the insult, and the increased expression was sustained throughout the experimental period. Following RIR insult, the number of neurons in the GCL significantly decreased. Ultra-structural analyses showed that double- or multiple-membrane autophagosomes were markedly accumulated in the cytoplasm of RGCs following IOP elevation. Since there are no known markers for paraptosis, its identification was based on morphological criteria. Electron microscopy (EM) analysis revealed severe structural alterations associated with cytoplasmatic vacuolization within the 6 h after RIR injury and RGC death. EM also revealed that vacuoles were derived predominantly from the progressive swelling of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and/or mitochondria in RGCs after RIR injury. The results provide novel evidence implicating an important role of autophagy and paraptosis in the pathogenesis of RIR injury. Autophagy and paraptosis take place during developmental cell death in the nervous system as well as in certain cases of neurodegeneration. Therefore, targeting autophagy and paraptosis could have therapeutic potential

  13. Activation of Neuropeptide Y Receptors Modulates Retinal Ganglion Cell Physiology and Exerts Neuroprotective Actions In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Martins, João; Elvas, Filipe; Brudzewsky, Dan; Martins, Tânia; Kolomiets, Bogdan; Tralhão, Pedro; Gøtzsche, Casper R.; Cavadas, Cláudia; Castelo-Branco, Miguel; Woldbye, David P. D.; Picaud, Serge; Santiago, Ana R.

    2015-01-01

    Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is expressed in mammalian retina but the location and potential modulatory effects of NPY receptor activation remain largely unknown. Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death is a hallmark of several retinal degenerative diseases, particularly glaucoma. Using purified RGCs and ex vivo rat retinal preparations, we have measured RGC intracellular free calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) and RGC spiking activity, respectively. We found that NPY attenuated the increase in the [Ca2+]i triggered by glutamate mainly via Y1 receptor activation. Moreover, (Leu31, Pro34)−NPY, a Y1/Y5 receptor agonist, increased the initial burst response of OFF-type RGCs, although no effect was observed on RGC spontaneous spiking activity. The Y1 receptor activation was also able to directly modulate RGC responses by attenuating the NMDA-induced increase in RGC spiking activity. These results suggest that Y1 receptor activation, at the level of inner or outer plexiform layers, leads to modulation of RGC receptive field properties. Using in vitro cultures of rat retinal explants exposed to NMDA, we found that NPY pretreatment prevented NMDA-induced cell death. However, in an animal model of retinal ischemia-reperfusion injury, pretreatment with NPY or (Leu31, Pro34)−NPY was not able to prevent apoptosis or rescue RGCs. In conclusion, we found modulatory effects of NPY application that for the first time were detected at the level of RGCs. However, further studies are needed to evaluate whether NPY neuroprotective actions detected in retinal explants can be translated into animal models of retinal degenerative diseases. PMID:26311075

  14. Caffeine administration prevents retinal neuroinflammation and loss of retinal ganglion cells in an animal model of glaucoma

    PubMed Central

    Madeira, Maria H.; Ortin-Martinez, Arturo; Nadal-Nícolas, Francisco; Ambrósio, António F.; Vidal-Sanz, Manuel; Agudo-Barriuso, Marta; Santiago, Ana Raquel

    2016-01-01

    Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide, being characterized by progressive optic nerve damage and loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), accompanied by increased inflammatory response involving retinal microglial cells. The etiology of glaucoma is still unknown, and despite elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) being a major risk factor, the exact mechanisms responsible for RGC degeneration remain unknown. Caffeine, which is an antagonist of adenosine receptors, is the most widely consumed psychoactive drug in the world. Several evidences suggest that caffeine can attenuate the neuroinflammatory responses and afford protection upon central nervous system (CNS) injury. We took advantage of a well characterized animal model of glaucoma to investigate whether caffeine administration controls neuroinflammation and elicits neuroprotection. Caffeine or water were administered ad libitum and ocular hypertension (OHT) was induced by laser photocoagulation of the limbal veins in Sprague Dawley rats. Herein, we show that caffeine is able to partially decrease the IOP in ocular hypertensive animals. More importantly, we found that drinking caffeine prevented retinal microglia-mediated neuroinflammatory response and attenuated the loss of RGCs in animals with ocular hypertension (OHT). This study opens the possibility that caffeine or adenosine receptor antagonists might be a therapeutic option to manage RGC loss in glaucoma. PMID:27270337

  15. Caffeine administration prevents retinal neuroinflammation and loss of retinal ganglion cells in an animal model of glaucoma.

    PubMed

    Madeira, Maria H; Ortin-Martinez, Arturo; Nadal-Nícolas, Francisco; Ambrósio, António F; Vidal-Sanz, Manuel; Agudo-Barriuso, Marta; Santiago, Ana Raquel

    2016-01-01

    Glaucoma is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide, being characterized by progressive optic nerve damage and loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), accompanied by increased inflammatory response involving retinal microglial cells. The etiology of glaucoma is still unknown, and despite elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) being a major risk factor, the exact mechanisms responsible for RGC degeneration remain unknown. Caffeine, which is an antagonist of adenosine receptors, is the most widely consumed psychoactive drug in the world. Several evidences suggest that caffeine can attenuate the neuroinflammatory responses and afford protection upon central nervous system (CNS) injury. We took advantage of a well characterized animal model of glaucoma to investigate whether caffeine administration controls neuroinflammation and elicits neuroprotection. Caffeine or water were administered ad libitum and ocular hypertension (OHT) was induced by laser photocoagulation of the limbal veins in Sprague Dawley rats. Herein, we show that caffeine is able to partially decrease the IOP in ocular hypertensive animals. More importantly, we found that drinking caffeine prevented retinal microglia-mediated neuroinflammatory response and attenuated the loss of RGCs in animals with ocular hypertension (OHT). This study opens the possibility that caffeine or adenosine receptor antagonists might be a therapeutic option to manage RGC loss in glaucoma. PMID:27270337

  16. Melanopsin retinal ganglion cell loss and circadian dysfunction in Alzheimer's disease (Review)

    PubMed Central

    FENG, RUIQI; LI, LIJUAN; YU, HAIYAN; LIU, MIN; ZHAO, WEI

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease affects 27 million individuals and is the most common cause of dementia worldwide. The pathology of Alzheimer's disease is primarily due to the β-amyloid deposits and neurofibrillary tangles. These deposits exist largely in the cerebral blood vessels, but have also been shown to exist in retinal vessels. A new class of cells that were recently identified, known as melanopsin-expressing retinal ganglion cells (mRGCs), are involved in the non-image forming functions of the eye. These functions include circadian activities such as temperature rhythms, melatonin release and rest-activity cycles. Circadian dysfunction has been investigated in many cases of Alzheimer's disease. In this review, we outline the current accepted Alzheimer's disease pathology, the role of mRCGs in optic neuropathies and the role of mRCGs, leading to circadian dysfunction, in Alzheimer's disease. PMID:26935586

  17. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor prevents dendritic retraction of adult mouse retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Binley, Kate E; Ng, Wai S; Barde, Yves-Alain; Song, Bing; Morgan, James E

    2016-08-01

    We used cultured adult mouse retinae as a model system to follow and quantify the retraction of dendrites using diolistic labelling of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) following explantation. Cell death was monitored in parallel by nuclear staining as 'labelling' with RGC and apoptotic markers was inconsistent and exceedingly difficult to quantify reliably. Nuclear staining allowed us to delineate a lengthy time window during which dendrite retraction can be monitored in the absence of RGC death. The addition of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) produced a marked reduction in dendritic degeneration, even when application was delayed for 3 days after retinal explantation. These results suggest that the delayed addition of trophic factors may be functionally beneficial before the loss of cell bodies in the course of conditions such as glaucoma. PMID:27285957

  18. Melanopsin-expressing retinal ganglion-cell photoreceptors: cellular diversity and role in pattern vision

    PubMed Central

    Ecker, Jennifer L.; Dumitrescu, Olivia N.; Wong, Kwoon Y.; Alam, Nazia M.; Chen, Shih-Kuo; LeGates, Tara; Renna, Jordan M.; Prusky, Glen T.; Berson, David M.; Hattar, Samer

    2010-01-01

    Using the photopigment melanopsin, intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) respond directly to light to drive circadian clock resetting and pupillary constriction. We now report that ipRGCs are more abundant and diverse than previously appreciated, project more widely within the brain, and can support spatial visual perception. A Cre-based melanopsin reporter mouse line revealed at least five subtypes of ipRGCs with distinct morphological and physiological characteristics. Collectively, these cells project beyond the known brain targets of ipRGCs to heavily innervate the superior colliculus and dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus, retinotopically-organized nuclei mediating object localization and discrimination. Mice lacking classical rod-cone photoreception, and thus entirely dependent on melanopsin for light detection, were able to discriminate grating stimuli from equiluminant gray, and had measurable visual acuity. Thus, non-classical retinal photoreception occurs within diverse cell types, and influences circuits and functions encompassing luminance as well as spatial information. PMID:20624591

  19. Retinal ganglion cell layer of the Caspian seal Pusa caspica: topography and localization of the high-resolution area.

    PubMed

    Mass, Alla M; Supin, A Y

    2010-01-01

    Retinal topography, cell density and sizes of ganglion cells in the Caspian seal (Pusa caspica) were analyzed in retinal whole mounts stained with cresyl-violet. The topographic distribution of ganglion cells displayed an area of high cell density located in the temporal quadrant of the retina and was similar to the area centralis of terrestrial carnivores. It extended nasally, above the optic disk, as a streak of increased cell density. In different whole mounts, the peak cell density in the high-density area ranged from 1,684 to 1,844 cells/mm² (mean 1,773 cells/mm²). The cell density data predict a retinal resolution of around 8.5 cycles/degree in water. A distinctive feature of the Caspian seal's retina is the large size of ganglion cells and the low cell density compared to terrestrial mammals. The ganglion cell diameter ranged from 10 to 58 μm. Cell size histograms featured bimodal patterns with groups of small and large ganglion cells. The large cells appeared similar to α-cells of terrestrial mammals and constituted 7% of the total ganglion cell population. PMID:21079394

  20. Spatiotemporal aspects of pulsed electrical stimuli on the responses of rabbit retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Ralph J; Ziv, Ofer R; Rizzo, Joseph F; Scribner, Dean; Johnson, Lee

    2009-12-01

    Implanted intraocular microelectrode arrays are being used to provide sight to individuals who are blind due to photoreceptor degeneration. It is envisioned that this retinal prosthesis will create the illusion of motion by stimulating focal areas of the retina in a sequential fashion through neighboring electrodes, much like the rapid succession of still images in movies and computer animation gives rise to apparent motion. Using a high-density microelectrode array, we examined the extracellularly recorded responses of rabbit retinal ganglion cells to a bar-shaped electrode array that was stepped at 50 microm increments at different rates across the retina and compared these responses to the responses generated to a similarly shaped light stimulus that was stepped across the retina. When the retina was stimulated at 1 step/s, retinal ganglion cells gave robust bursts of action potentials to both the electrode array and the light stimulus. The responses to the 'moving' electrode array decreased progressively with increasing stepping frequency. At 16 steps/s (highest frequency tested), the number of spikes per sweep and the number of bursts per sweep were reduced 75% and 67% respectively. In contrast, when the retina was stimulated at 16 steps/s with the 'moving' light stimulus, the number of spikes per sweep and the number of bursts per sweep were reduced only 43% and 25% respectively. These findings suggest that simple translation of object motion to sequential stimulation through neighboring electrodes may not be the best way to convey the perception of object motion in a patient with a retinal prosthesis. PMID:19766116

  1. Math5 is required for retinal ganglion cell and optic nerve formation

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Nadean L.; Patel, Sima; Brzezinski, Joseph; Glaser, Tom

    2006-01-01

    SUMMARY The vertebrate retina contains seven major neuronal and glial cell types in an interconnected network that collects, processes and sends visual signals through the optic nerve to the brain. Retinal neuron differentiation is thought to require both intrinsic and extrinsic factors, yet few intrinsic gene products have been identified that direct this process. Math5 (Atoh7) encodes a basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor that is specifically expressed by mouse retinal progenitors. Math5 is highly homologous to atonal, which is critically required for R8 neuron formation during Drosophila eye development. Like R8 cells in the fly eye, retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) are the first neurons in the vertebrate eye. Here we show that Math5 mutant mice are fully viable, yet lack RGCs and optic nerves. Thus, two evolutionarily diverse eye types require atonal gene family function for the earliest stages of retinal neuron formation. At the same time, the abundance of cone photoreceptors is significantly increased in Math5−/− retinae, suggesting a binary change in cell fate from RGCs to cones. A small number of nascent RGCs are detected during embryogenesis, but these fail to develop further, suggesting that committed RGCs may also require Math5 function. PMID:11493566

  2. Blockade of pathological retinal ganglion cell hyperactivity improves optogenetically evoked light responses in rd1 mice

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, John M.; Degenaar, Patrick; Sernagor, Evelyne

    2015-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a progressive retinal dystrophy that causes visual impairment and eventual blindness. Retinal prostheses are the best currently available vision-restoring treatment for RP, but only restore crude vision. One possible contributing factor to the poor quality of vision achieved with prosthetic devices is the pathological retinal ganglion cell (RGC) hyperactivity that occurs in photoreceptor dystrophic disorders. Gap junction blockade with meclofenamic acid (MFA) was recently shown to diminish RGC hyperactivity and improve the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of RGC responses to light flashes and electrical stimulation in the rd10 mouse model of RP. We sought to extend these results to spatiotemporally patterned optogenetic stimulation in the faster-degenerating rd1 model and compare the effectiveness of a number of drugs known to disrupt rd1 hyperactivity. We crossed rd1 mice with a transgenic mouse line expressing the light-sensitive cation channel channelrhodopsin2 (ChR2) in RGCs, allowing them to be stimulated directly using high-intensity blue light. We used 60-channel ITO multielectrode arrays to record ChR2-mediated RGC responses from wholemount, ex-vivo retinas to full-field and patterned stimuli before and after application of MFA, 18-β-glycyrrhetinic acid (18BGA, another gap junction blocker) or flupirtine (Flu, a Kv7 potassium channel opener). All three drugs decreased spontaneous RGC firing, but 18BGA and Flu also decreased the sensitivity of RGCs to optogenetic stimulation. Nevertheless, all three drugs improved the SNR of ChR2-mediated responses. MFA also made it easier to discern motion direction of a moving bar from RGC population responses. Our results support the hypothesis that reduction of pathological RGC spontaneous activity characteristic in retinal degenerative disorders may improve the quality of visual responses in retinal prostheses and they provide insights into how best to achieve this for optogenetic prostheses

  3. Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells detect light with a vitamin A-based photopigment, melanopsin

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Yingbin; Zhong, Haining; Wang, Min-Hua H.; Luo, Dong-Gen; Liao, Hsi-Wen; Maeda, Hidetaka; Hattar, Samer; Frishman, Laura J.; Yau, King-Wai

    2005-01-01

    In mammals, intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) mediate non-image-forming visual functions such as pupillary light reflex (PLR) and circadian photoentrainment. This photosensitivity requires melanopsin, an invertebrate opsin-like protein expressed by the ipRGCs. The precise role of melanopsin remains uncertain. One suggestion has been that melanopsin may be a photoisomerase, serving to regenerate an unidentified pigment in ipRGCs. This possibility was echoed by a recent report that melanopsin is expressed also in the mouse retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), a key center for regeneration of rod and cone pigments. To address this question, we studied mice lacking RPE65, a protein essential for the regeneration of rod and cone pigments. Rpe65-/- ipRGCs were ≈20- to 40-fold less photosensitive than normal at both single-cell and behavioral (PLR) levels but were rescued by exogenous 9-cis-retinal (an 11-cis-retinal analog), indicating the requirement of a vitamin A-based chromophore for ipRGC photosensitivity. In contrast, 9-cis-retinal was unable to restore intrinsic photosensitivity to melanopsin-ablated ipRGCs, arguing against melanopsin functioning merely in photopigment regeneration. Interestingly, exogenous all-trans-retinal was also able to rescue the low sensitivity of rpe65-/- ipRGCs, suggesting that melanopsin could be a bistable pigment. Finally, we detected no melanopsin in the RPE and no changes in rod and cone sensitivities due to melanopsin ablation. Together, these results strongly suggest that melanopsin is the photopigment in the ipRGCs. PMID:16014418

  4. Blockade of pathological retinal ganglion cell hyperactivity improves optogenetically evoked light responses in rd1 mice.

    PubMed

    Barrett, John M; Degenaar, Patrick; Sernagor, Evelyne

    2015-01-01

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a progressive retinal dystrophy that causes visual impairment and eventual blindness. Retinal prostheses are the best currently available vision-restoring treatment for RP, but only restore crude vision. One possible contributing factor to the poor quality of vision achieved with prosthetic devices is the pathological retinal ganglion cell (RGC) hyperactivity that occurs in photoreceptor dystrophic disorders. Gap junction blockade with meclofenamic acid (MFA) was recently shown to diminish RGC hyperactivity and improve the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of RGC responses to light flashes and electrical stimulation in the rd10 mouse model of RP. We sought to extend these results to spatiotemporally patterned optogenetic stimulation in the faster-degenerating rd1 model and compare the effectiveness of a number of drugs known to disrupt rd1 hyperactivity. We crossed rd1 mice with a transgenic mouse line expressing the light-sensitive cation channel channelrhodopsin2 (ChR2) in RGCs, allowing them to be stimulated directly using high-intensity blue light. We used 60-channel ITO multielectrode arrays to record ChR2-mediated RGC responses from wholemount, ex-vivo retinas to full-field and patterned stimuli before and after application of MFA, 18-β-glycyrrhetinic acid (18BGA, another gap junction blocker) or flupirtine (Flu, a Kv7 potassium channel opener). All three drugs decreased spontaneous RGC firing, but 18BGA and Flu also decreased the sensitivity of RGCs to optogenetic stimulation. Nevertheless, all three drugs improved the SNR of ChR2-mediated responses. MFA also made it easier to discern motion direction of a moving bar from RGC population responses. Our results support the hypothesis that reduction of pathological RGC spontaneous activity characteristic in retinal degenerative disorders may improve the quality of visual responses in retinal prostheses and they provide insights into how best to achieve this for optogenetic prostheses

  5. Transcriptional regulatory regions of gap43 needed in developing and regenerating retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Kusik, Brandon W; Hammond, Dena R; Udvadia, Ava J

    2010-02-01

    Mammals and fish differ in their ability to express axon growth-associated genes in response to CNS injury, which contributes to the differences in their ability for CNS regeneration. Previously we demonstrated that for the axon growth-associated gene, gap43, regions of the rat promoter that are sufficient to promote reporter gene expression in the developing zebrafish nervous system are not sufficient to promote expression in regenerating retinal ganglion cells in zebrafish. Recently, we identified a 3.6-kb gap43 promoter fragment from the pufferfish, Takifugu rubripes (fugu), that can promote reporter gene expression during both development and regeneration. Using promoter deletion analysis, we have found regions of the 3.6-kb fugu gap43 promoter that are necessary for expression in regenerating, but not developing, retinal ganglion cells. Within the 3.6-kb promoter, we have identified elements that are highly conserved among fish, as well as elements conserved among fish, mammals, and birds. PMID:20034105

  6. Chloride channel protein 2 prevents glutamate-induced apoptosis in retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Bi, Miao-Miao; Hong, Sen; Ma, Ling-Jun; Zhou, Hong-Yan; Lu, Jia; Zhao, Jing; Zheng, Ya-Juan

    2016-01-01

    Objective(s): The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of chloride channel protein 2 (ClC-2) in glutamate-induced apoptosis in the retinal ganglion cell line (RGC-5). Materials and Methods: RGC-5 cells were treated with 1 mM glutamate for 24 hr. The expression of ClC-2, Bax, and Bcl-2 was detected by western blot analysis. Cell survival and apoptosis were measured by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) and flow cytometry assays, respectively. Caspase-3 and -9 activities were determined by a colorimetric assay. The roles of ClC-2 in glutamate-induced apoptosis were examined by using ClC-2 complementary deoxyribonucleic acid (cDNA) and small inference ribonucleic acid (RNA) transfection technology. Results: Overexpression of ClC-2 in RGC-5 cells significantly decreased glutamate-induced apoptosis and increased cell viability, whereas silencing of ClC-2 with short hairpin (sh) RNA produced opposite effects. ClC-2 overexpression increased the expression of Bcl-2, decreased the expression of Bax, and decreased caspase-3 and -9 activation in RGC-5 cells treated with glutamate, but silencing of ClC-2 produced opposite effects. Conclusion: Our data suggest that ClC-2 chloride channels might play a protective role in glutamate-induced apoptosis in retinal ganglion cells via the mitochondria-dependent apoptosis pathway.

  7. Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated stimulation of retinal ganglion cell photoreceptors.

    PubMed

    Sodhi, Puneet; Hartwick, Andrew T E

    2016-09-01

    Melanopsin-dependent phototransduction in intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) involves a Gq-coupled phospholipase C (PLC) signaling cascade. Acetylcholine, released in the mammalian retina by starburst amacrine cells, can also activate Gq-PLC pathways through certain muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs). Using multielectrode array recordings of rat retinas, we demonstrate that robust spiking responses can be evoked in neonatal and adult ipRGCs after bath application of the muscarinic agonist carbachol. The stimulatory action of carbachol on ipRGCs was a direct effect, as confirmed through calcium imaging experiments on isolated ipRGCs in purified cultures. Using flickering (6 Hz) yellow light stimuli at irradiances below the threshold for melanopsin activation, spiking responses could be elicited in ipRGCs that were suppressed by mAChR antagonism. Therefore, this work identified a novel melanopsin-independent pathway for stimulating sustained spiking in ganglion cell photoreceptors. This mAChR-mediated pathway could enhance ipRGC spiking responses in conditions known to evoke retinal acetylcholine release, such as those involving flickering or moving visual stimuli. Furthermore, this work identifies a pharmacological approach for light-independent ipRGC stimulation that could be targeted by mAChR agonists. PMID:27055770

  8. Transdifferentiation of periodontal ligament-derived stem cells into retinal ganglion-like cells and its microRNA signature

    PubMed Central

    Ng, Tsz Kin; Yung, Jasmine S. Y.; Choy, Kwong Wai; Cao, Di; Leung, Christopher K. S.; Cheung, Herman S.; Pang, Chi Pui

    2015-01-01

    Retinal diseases are the leading causes of irreversible visual impairment and blindness in the developed countries. Human retina has limited regenerative power to replace cell loss. Stem cell replacement therapy has been proposed as a viable option. Previously, we have induced human adult periodontal ligament stem cells (PDLSCs) to the retinal lineage. In this study, we modified our induction protocol to direct human adult PDLSCs into retinal ganglion-like cells and determined the microRNA (miRNA) signature of this transdifferentiation process. The differentiated PDLSCs demonstrated the characteristics of functional neurons as they expressed neuronal and retinal ganglion cell markers (ATOH7, POU4F2, β-III tubulin, MAP2, TAU, NEUROD1 and SIX3), formed synapses and showed glutamate-induced calcium responses as well as spontaneous electrical activities. The global miRNA expression profiling identified 44 upregulated and 27 downregulated human miRNAs after retinal induction. Gene ontology analysis of the predicted miRNA target genes confirmed the transdifferentiation is closely related to neuronal differentiation processes. Furthermore, the expressions of 2 miRNA-targeted candidates, VEGF and PTEN, were significantly upregulated during the induction process. This study identified the transdifferentiation process of human adult stem cells into retinal ganglion-like cells and revealed the involvement of both genetic and miRNA regulatory mechanisms. PMID:26549845

  9. Acetylation Preserves Retinal Ganglion Cell Structure and Function in a Chronic Model of Ocular Hypertension

    PubMed Central

    Alsarraf, Oday; Fan, Jie; Dahrouj, Mohammad; Chou, C. James; Yates, Phillip W.; Crosson, Craig E.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. The current studies investigate if the histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor, valproic acid (VPA), can limit retinal ganglion cell (RGC) degeneration in an ocular-hypertensive rat model. Methods. Intraocular pressure (IOP) was elevated unilaterally in Brown Norway rats by hypertonic saline injection. Rats received either vehicle or VPA (100 mg/kg) treatment for 28 days. Retinal ganglion cell function and number were assessed by pattern electroretinogram (pERG) and retrograde FluoroGold labeling. Western blotting and a fluorescence assay were used for determination of histone H3 acetylation and HDAC activity, respectively, at 3-day, 1-week, and 2-week time points. Results. Hypertonic saline injections increased IOPs by 7 to 14 mm Hg. In vehicle-treated animals, ocular hypertension resulted in a 29.1% and 39.4% decrease in pERG amplitudes at 2 and 4 weeks, respectively, and a 42.9% decrease in mean RGC density at 4 weeks. In comparison, VPA treatment yielded significant amplitude preservation at 2 and 4 weeks and showed significant RGC density preservation at 4 weeks. No significant difference in RGC densities or IOPs was measured between control eyes of vehicle- and VPA-treated rats. In ocular-hypertensive eyes, class I HDAC activity was significantly elevated within 1 week (13.3 ± 2.2%) and histone H3 acetylation was significantly reduced within 2 weeks following the induction of ocular hypertension. Conclusions. Increase in HDAC activity is a relatively early retinal event induced by elevated IOP, and suppressing HDAC activity can protect RGCs from ocular-hypertensive stress. Together these data provide a basis for developing HDAC inhibitors for the treatment of optic neuropathies. PMID:25358731

  10. Estimation of Retinal Ganglion Cell Loss in Glaucomatous Eyes With a Relative Afferent Pupillary Defect

    PubMed Central

    Tatham, Andrew J.; Meira-Freitas, Daniel; Weinreb, Robert N.; Marvasti, Amir H.; Zangwill, Linda M.; Medeiros, Felipe A.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. To estimate retinal ganglion cell (RGC) losses associated with a relative afferent pupillary defect (RAPD) in glaucoma. Methods. A cross-sectional study was conducted including both eyes of 103 participants from the Diagnostic Innovations in Glaucoma Study. A total of 77 subjects had glaucoma in at least one eye and 26 were healthy. Pupil responses were assessed using an automated pupillometer that records the magnitude of RAPD as an “RAPD score.” Standard automated perimetry (SAP) and optical coherence tomography (OCT) also were performed. Retinal ganglion cell counts were estimated using empirical formulas that combine estimates from SAP and OCT. The estimated percentage RGC loss was calculated using the combined structure function index (CSFI). Results. There was good correlation between RAPD magnitude and intereye differences in estimated RGCs (R2 = 0.492, P < 0.001), mean deviation (R2 = 0.546, P < 0.001), retinal nerve fiber layer thickness (R2 = 0.362, P < 0.001), and CSFI (R2 = 0.484, P < 0.001). Therefore, a high RAPD score is likely to indicate large asymmetric RGC losses. The relationship between intereye difference in RGC counts and RAPD score was described best by the formula; RGC difference = 21,896 + 353,272 * RAPD score. No healthy subjects had an absolute RAPD score > 0.3, which was associated with asymmetry of 105,982 cells (or 12%). Conclusions. Good correlation between the magnitude of RAPD and intereye differences in mean deviation and estimated RGC counts suggests pupillometry may be useful for quantifying asymmetric damage in glaucoma. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00221897.) PMID:24282221

  11. Stage-specific differentiation of iPSCs toward retinal ganglion cell lineage

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Fei; Chen, Mengfei; Liu, Ying; Hu, Huiling; Xiong, Yunfan; Xu, Chaochao; Liu, Yuchun; Li, Kangjun; Zhuang, Jing

    2016-01-01

    Purpose As an alternative and desirable approach for regenerative medicine, human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC) technology raises the possibility of developing patient-tailored cell therapies to treat intractable degenerative diseases in the future. This study was undertaken to guide human Tenon’s capsule fibroblasts-derived iPSCs (TiPSCs) to differentiate along the retinal ganglion cell (RGC) lineage, aiming at producing appropriate cellular material for RGC regeneration. Methods By mimicking RGC genesis, we deliberately administered the whole differentiation process and directed the stage-specific differentiation of human TiPSCs toward an RGC fate via manipulation of the retinal inducers (DKK1+Noggin+Lefty A) alongside master gene (Atoh7) sequentially. Throughout this stepwise differentiation process, changes in primitive neuroectodermal, eye field, and RGC marker expression were monitored with quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR), immunocytochemistry, and/or flow cytometry. Results Upon retinal differentiation, a large fraction of the cells developed characteristics of retinal progenitor cells (RPCs) in response to simulated environment signaling (DKK1+Noggin+Lefty A), which was selectively recovered with manual isolation approaches and then maintained in the presence of mitogen for multiple passages. Thereafter, overexpression of ATOH7 further promoted RGC specification in TiPSC-derived RPCs. A subset of transfected cells displayed RGC-specific expression patterns, including Brn3b, iSlet1, calretinin, and Tuj, and approximately 23% of Brn3b-positive RGC-like cells were obtained finally. Conclusions Our DKK1+Noggin+Lefty A/Atoh7-based RGC-induction regime could efficiently direct TiPSCs to differentiate along RGC lineage in a stage-specific manner, which may provide a benefit to develop possible cell therapies to treat retinal degenerative diseases such as glaucoma. PMID:27293372

  12. Human organotypic retinal cultures (HORCs) as a chronic experimental model for investigation of retinal ganglion cell degeneration.

    PubMed

    Osborne, Andrew; Hopes, Marina; Wright, Phillip; Broadway, David C; Sanderson, Julie

    2016-02-01

    There is a growing need for models of human diseases that utilise native, donated human tissue in order to model disease processes and develop novel therapeutic strategies. In this paper we assessed the suitability of adult human retinal explants as a potential model of chronic retinal ganglion cell (RGC) degeneration. Our results confirmed that RGC markers commonly used in rodent studies (NeuN, βIII Tubulin and Thy-1) were appropriate for labelling human RGCs and followed the expected differential expression patterns across, as well as throughout, the macular and para-macular regions of the retina. Furthermore, we showed that neither donor age nor post-mortem time (within 24 h) significantly affected the initial expression levels of RGC markers. In addition, the feasibility of using human post mortem donor tissue as a long-term model of RGC degeneration was determined with RGC protein being detectable up to 4 weeks in culture with an associated decline in RGC mRNA and significant, progressive, apoptotic labelling of NeuN(+) cells. Differences in RGC apoptosis might have been influenced by medium compositions indicating that media constituents could play a role in supporting axotomised RGCs. We propose that using ex vivo human explants may prove to be a useful model for testing the effectiveness of neuroprotective strategies. PMID:26432917

  13. A phospholipase A₂ isolated from Lachesis muta snake venom increases the survival of retinal ganglion cells in vitro.

    PubMed

    da Silva Cunha, Karinne Cristinne; Fuly, André Lopes; de Araujo, Elizabeth Giestal

    2011-03-15

    We have previously showed that a phospholipase A₂ isolated from Lachesis muta snake venom and named LM-PLA₂-I displayed particular biological activities, as hemolysis, inhibition on platelet aggregation, edema induction and myotoxicity. In the present work, we evaluated the effect of LM-PLA₂-I on the survival of axotomized rat retinal ganglion cells kept in vitro, as well as its mechanism of action. Our results clearly showed that treatment with LM-PLA₂-I increased the survival of ganglion cells (100% when compared to control cultures) and the treatment of LM-PLA₂-I with p-bromophenacyl bromide abolished this effect. This result indicates that the effect of LM-PLA₂-I on ganglion cell survival is entirely dependent on its enzymatic activity and the generation of lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) may be a prerequisite to the observed survival. In fact, commercial LPC mimicked the effect of LM-PLA₂-I upon ganglion cell survival. To investigate the mechanism of action of LM-PLA₂-I, cultures were treated with chelerythrine chloride, BAPTA-AM, rottlerin and also with an inhibitor of c-junc kinase (JNKi). Our results showed that rottlerin and JNK inhibitor abolished the LM-PLA₂-I on ganglion cell survival. Taken together, our results showed that LM-PLA₂-I and its enzymatic product, LPC promoted survival of retinal ganglion cells through the protein kinase C pathway and strongly suggest a possible role of the PLA₂ enzyme and LPC in controlling the survival of axotomized neuronal cells. PMID:21223976

  14. Mutant WDR36 directly affects axon growth of retinal ganglion cells leading to progressive retinal degeneration in mice

    PubMed Central

    Chi, Zai-Long; Yasumoto, Fumie; Sergeev, Yuri; Minami, Masayoshi; Obazawa, Minoru; Kimura, Itaru; Takada, Yuichiro; Iwata, Takeshi

    2010-01-01

    Primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) is one of the three principal subtypes of glaucoma and among the leading cause of blindness worldwide. POAG is defined by cell death of the retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and surrounding neuronal cells at higher or normal intraocular pressure (IOP). Coded by one of the three genes responsible for POAG, WD repeat-containing protein 36 (WDR36) has two domains with a similar folding. To address whether WDR36 is functionally important in the retina, we developed four transgenic mice strains overexpressing a wild-type (Wt) and three mutant variants of D606G, deletion of amino acids at positions 605–607 (Del605–607) and at 601–640 (Del601–640) equivalent to the location of the D658G mutation observed in POAG patients. A triple amino acid deletion of mouse Wdr36 at positions 605–607 corresponding to the deletion at positions 657–659 in humans developed progressive retinal degeneration at the peripheral retina with normal IOP. RGCs and connecting amacrine cell synapses were affected at the peripheral retina. Axon outgrowth rate of cultured RGC directly isolated from transgenic animal was significantly reduced by the Wdr36 mutation compared with Wt. Molecular modeling of wild and mutant mouse Wdr36 revealed that deletion at positions 605–607 removed three residues and a hydrogen bond, required to stabilize anti-parallel β-sheet of the 6th β-propeller in the second domain. We concluded that WDR36 plays an important functional role in the retina homeostasis and mutation to this gene can cause devastating retinal damage. These data will improve understanding of the functional property of WDR36 in the retina and provide a new animal model for glaucoma therapeutics. PMID:20631153

  15. Protection of Retinal Ganglion Cells and Retinal Vasculature by Lycium Barbarum Polysaccharides in a Mouse Model of Acute Ocular Hypertension

    PubMed Central

    Mi, Xue-Song; Feng, Qian; Lo, Amy Cheuk Yin; Chang, Raymond Chuen-Chung; Lin, Bin; Chung, Sookja Kim; So, Kwok-Fai

    2012-01-01

    Acute ocular hypertension (AOH) is a condition found in acute glaucoma. The purpose of this study is to investigate the protective effect of Lycium barbarum polysaccharides (LBP) and its protective mechanisms in the AOH insult. LBP has been shown to exhibit neuroprotective effect in the chronic ocular hypertension (COH) experiments. AOH mouse model was induced in unilateral eye for one hour by introducing 90 mmHg ocular pressure. The animal was fed with LBP solution (1 mg/kg) or vehicle daily from 7 days before the AOH insult till sacrifice at either day 4 or day 7 post insult. The neuroprotective effects of LBP on retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and blood-retinal-barrier (BRB) were evaluated. In control AOH retina, loss of RGCs, thinning of IRL thickness, increased IgG leakage, broken tight junctions, and decreased density of retinal blood vessels were observed. However, in LBP-treated AOH retina, there was less loss of RGCs with thinning of IRL thickness, IgG leakage, more continued structure of tight junctions associated with higher level of occludin protein and the recovery of the blood vessel density when compared with vehicle-treated AOH retina. Moreover, we found that LBP provides neuroprotection by down-regulating RAGE, ET-1, Aβ and AGE in the retina, as well as their related signaling pathways, which was related to inhibiting vascular damages and the neuronal degeneration in AOH insults. The present study suggests that LBP could prevent damage to RGCs from AOH-induced ischemic injury; furthermore, through its effects on blood vessel protection, LBP would also be a potential treatment for vascular-related retinopathy. PMID:23094016

  16. β1 Integrin-Focal Adhesion Kinase (FAK) Signaling Modulates Retinal Ganglion Cell (RGC) Survival

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Andrea Rachelle C.; Corredor, Raul G.; Obeso, Betty Albo; Trakhtenberg, Ephraim F.; Wang, Ying; Ponmattam, Jamie; Dvoriantchikova, Galina; Ivanov, Dmitry; Shestopalov, Valery I.; Goldberg, Jeffrey L.; Fini, Mary Elizabeth; Bajenaru, Michaela Livia

    2012-01-01

    Extracellular matrix (ECM) integrity in the central nervous system (CNS) is essential for neuronal homeostasis. Signals from the ECM are transmitted to neurons through integrins, a family of cell surface receptors that mediate cell attachment to ECM. We have previously established a causal link between the activation of the matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), degradation of laminin in the ECM of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), and RGC death in a mouse model of retinal ischemia-reperfusion injury (RIRI). Here we investigated the role of laminin-integrin signaling in RGC survival in vitro, and after ischemia in vivo. In purified primary rat RGCs, stimulation of the β1 integrin receptor with laminin, or agonist antibodies enhanced RGC survival in correlation with activation of β1 integrin’s major downstream regulator, focal adhesion kinase (FAK). Furthermore, β1 integrin binding and FAK activation were required for RGCs’ survival response to laminin. Finally, in vivo after RIRI, we observed an up-regulation of MMP-9, proteolytic degradation of laminin, decreased RGC expression of β1 integrin, FAK and Akt dephosphorylation, and reduced expression of the pro-survival molecule bcl-xL in the period preceding RGC apoptosis. RGC death was prevented, in the context of laminin degradation, by maintaining β1 integrin activation with agonist antibodies. Thus, disruption of homeostatic RGC-laminin interaction and signaling leads to cell death after retinal ischemia, and maintaining integrin activation may be a therapeutic approach to neuroprotection. PMID:23118988

  17. A method for electrophysiological characterization of hamster retinal ganglion cells using a high-density CMOS microelectrode array

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Ian L.; Russell, Thomas L.; Farrow, Karl; Fiscella, Michele; Franke, Felix; Müller, Jan; Jäckel, David; Hierlemann, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge of neuronal cell types in the mammalian retina is important for the understanding of human retinal disease and the advancement of sight-restoring technology, such as retinal prosthetic devices. A somewhat less utilized animal model for retinal research is the hamster, which has a visual system that is characterized by an area centralis and a wide visual field with a broad binocular component. The hamster retina is optimally suited for recording on the microelectrode array (MEA), because it intrinsically lies flat on the MEA surface and yields robust, large-amplitude signals. However, information in the literature about hamster retinal ganglion cell functional types is scarce. The goal of our work is to develop a method featuring a high-density (HD) complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) MEA technology along with a sequence of standardized visual stimuli in order to categorize ganglion cells in isolated Syrian Hamster (Mesocricetus auratus) retina. Since the HD-MEA is capable of recording at a higher spatial resolution than most MEA systems (17.5 μm electrode pitch), we were able to record from a large proportion of RGCs within a selected region. Secondly, we chose our stimuli so that they could be run during the experiment without intervention or computation steps. The visual stimulus set was designed to activate the receptive fields of most ganglion cells in parallel and to incorporate various visual features to which different cell types respond uniquely. Based on the ganglion cell responses, basic cell properties were determined: direction selectivity, speed tuning, width tuning, transience, and latency. These properties were clustered to identify ganglion cell types in the hamster retina. Ultimately, we recorded up to a cell density of 2780 cells/mm2 at 2 mm (42°) from the optic nerve head. Using five parameters extracted from the responses to visual stimuli, we obtained seven ganglion cell types. PMID:26528115

  18. Role of C/EBP Homologous Protein in Retinal Ganglion Cell Death After Ischemia/Reperfusion Injury

    PubMed Central

    Nashine, Sonali; Liu, Yang; Kim, Byung-Jin; Clark, Abbot F.; Pang, Iok-Hou

    2015-01-01

    Purpose. To investigate the role of C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP), a proapoptotic protein, and the unfolded protein response (UPR) marker that is involved in endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress-mediated apoptosis in mouse retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death following ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury. Methods. Retinal I/R injury was induced in adult C57BL/6J wild-type (WT) and CHOP knockout (Chop−/−) mice by raising IOP to 120 mm Hg for 60 minutes. Expression of CHOP and other UPR markers was studied by Western blot and immunohistochemistry. Retinal ganglion cell counts were performed in retinal flat mounts stained with an RGC marker. Retinal ganglion cell function was evaluated by scotopic threshold response (STR) electroretinography. Results. In WT mice, retinal CHOP was upregulated by 30% in I/R-injured eyes compared to uninjured eyes 3 days after injury (P < 0.05). Immunohistochemistry confirmed CHOP upregulation specifically in RGCs. CHOP knockout did not affect baseline RGC density or STR amplitude. Ischemia/reperfusion injury decreased RGC densities and STR amplitudes in both WT and Chop−/− mice. However, survival of RGCs in I/R-injured Chop−/− mouse was 48% higher (P < 0.05) than that in I/R-injured WT mouse 3 days after I/R injury. Similarly, RGC density was significantly higher in Chop−/− eyes at 7, 14, and 28 days after I/R injury. Scotopic threshold response amplitudes of Chop−/− mice were significantly higher at 3 and 7 days after I/R than those of WT mice. Conclusions. Absence of CHOP partially protects against RGC loss and reduction in retinal function after I/R injury, indicating that CHOP and, thus, ER stress play an important role in RGC apoptosis in retinal I/R injury. PMID:25414185

  19. A Thy1-CFP DBA/2J mouse line with cyan fluorescent protein expression in retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    RAYMOND, IONA D.; POOL, ANGELA L.; VILA, ALEJANDRO; BRECHA, NICHOLAS C.

    2013-01-01

    A DBA/2J (D2) transgenic mouse line with cyan fluorescent protein (CFP) reporter expression in ganglion cells was developed for the analysis of ganglion cells during progressive glaucoma. The Thy1-CFP D2 (CFP-D2) line was created by congenically breeding the D2 line, which develops pigmentary glaucoma, and the Thy1-CFP line, which expresses CFP in ganglion cells. Microsatellite marker analysis of CFP-D2 progeny verified the genetic inclusion of the D2 isa and ipd loci. Specific mutations within these loci lead to dysfunctional melanosomal proteins and glaucomatous phenotype in D2 mice. Polymerase chain reaction analysis confirmed the inclusion of the Thy1-CFP transgene. CFP-fluorescent ganglion cells, 6–20 μm in diameter, were distributed in all retinal regions, CFP processes were throughout the inner plexiform layer, and CFP-fluorescent axons were in the fiber layer and optic nerve head. Immunohistochemistry with antibodies to ganglion cell markers NF-L, NeuN, Brn3a, and SMI32 was used to confirm CFP expression in ganglion cells. Immunohistochemistry with antibodies to amacrine cell markers HPC-1 and ChAT was used to confirm weak CFP expression in cholinergic amacrine cells. CFP-D2 mice developed a glaucomatous phenotype, including iris disease, ganglion cell loss, attrition of the fiber layer, and elevated intraocular pressure. A CFP-D2 transgenic line with CFP-expressing ganglion cells was developed, which has (1) a predominantly D2 genetic background, (2) CFP-expressing ganglion cells, and (3) age-related progressive glaucoma. This line will be of value for experimental studies investigating ganglion cells and their axons in vivo and in vitro during the progressive development of glaucoma. PMID:19930759

  20. Differential modulation of retinal ganglion cell light responses by orthosteric and allosteric metabotropic glutamate receptor 8 compounds

    PubMed Central

    Reed, Brian T.; Morgans, Catherine W.; Duvoisin, Robert M.

    2012-01-01

    To investigate the role of mGluR8 in modulating the synaptic responses of retinal ganglion cells, we used a recently identified positive allosteric modulator of mGluR8, AZ12216052 (AZ) and the mGluR8-specific orthosteric agonist (S)-3,4-dicarboxyphenylglycine (DCPG). These agents were applied to whole-cell voltage-clamped ganglion cells from an isolated, superfused mouse retina preparation. DCPG reduced OFF-ganglion cell excitatory currents, whereas AZ enhanced the peak excitatory currents in ON-, OFF-, and ON-OFF-ganglion cells. The effects on ganglion cell inhibitory currents were more varied. The effects of the allosteric modulator were stronger for bright stimuli than for dim stimuli, consistent with receptor stimulation by endogenous glutamate being stronger during bright light stimulation and with mGluR8 receptors mainly being localized away from glutamate release sites, immuno-labeled with VGLUT1. The differential sensitivity of ganglion cell light responses to DCPG and AZ supports multiple sites where mGluR8 modulates the light responses of ganglion cells. PMID:23164615

  1. Domain of metamers exciting intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) and rods.

    PubMed

    Viénot, Françoise; Brettel, Hans; Dang, Tuong-Vi; Le Rohellec, Jean

    2012-02-01

    Any stimulus can be described as composed of two components-a fundamental color stimulus that controls the three cone responses and a metameric black that has no effect on cones but can drive photoreceptors other than cones [e.g., rods and melanopsin expressing retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs)]. The Cohen and Kappauf [Am. J. Psychol. 95, 537 (1982)] method is extended to calculate the black metamer basis for a limited set of band spectra. Using seven colored LEDs, the method is exploited to produce real metamer illuminations that stimulate in parallel melanopsin expressing ipRGCs and rods, at most or at least. We have verified that the pupil diameter increases when the ipRGC and rod excitation is at a minimum. For 14 observers, the average relative increase is 12%. PMID:22330402

  2. Sulbutiamine counteracts trophic factor deprivation induced apoptotic cell death in transformed retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Kang, Kui Dong; Majid, Aman Shah Abdul; Kim, Kyung-A; Kang, Kyungsu; Ahn, Hong Ryul; Nho, Chu Won; Jung, Sang Hoon

    2010-11-01

    Sulbutiamine is a highly lipid soluble synthetic analogue of vitamin B(1) and is used clinically for the treatment of asthenia. The aim of our study was to demonstrate whether sulbutiamine is able to attenuate trophic factor deprivation induced cell death to transformed retinal ganglion cells (RGC-5). Cells were subjected to serum deprivation for defined periods and sulbutiamine at different concentrations was added to the cultures. Various procedures (e.g. cell viability assays, apoptosis assay, reactive oxygen species analysis, Western blot analysis, flow cytometric analysis, glutathione (GSH) and glutathione-S-transferase (GST) measurement) were used to demonstrate the effect of sulbutiamine. Sulbutiamine dose-dependently attenuated apoptotic cell death induced by serum deprivation and stimulated GSH and GST activity. Moreover, sulbutiamine decreased the expression of cleaved caspase-3 and AIF. This study demonstrates for the first time that sulbutiamine is able to attenuate trophic factor deprivation induced apoptotic cell death in neuronal cells in culture. PMID:20809085

  3. Melanopsin-positive Intrinsically Photosensitive Retinal Ganglion Cells: From Form to Function

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Tiffany M.; Do, Michael Tri H.; Dacey, Dennis; Lucas, Robert; Hattar, Samer; Matynia, and Anna

    2012-01-01

    Melanopsin imparts an intrinsic photosensitivity to a subclass of retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs). Generally thought of as irradiance detectors, ipRGCs target numerous brain regions involved in non-image forming vision. ipRGCs integrate their intrinsic, melanopsin-mediated light information with rod/cone signals relayed via synaptic connections to influence light dependent behaviors. Early observations indicated diversity amongst these cells and recently several specific subtypes have been identified. These subtypes differ in morphological and physiological form, controlling separate functions that range from biological rhythm via circadian photoentrainment, to protective behavioral responses including pupil constriction and light avoidance, and even image-forming vision. In this minisymposium review, we will discuss some recent findings that highlight the diversity in both form and function of these recently discovered atypical photoreceptors. PMID:22072661

  4. NMDA Receptors Multiplicatively Scale Visual Signals and Enhance Directional Motion Discrimination in Retinal Ganglion Cells.

    PubMed

    Poleg-Polsky, Alon; Diamond, Jeffrey S

    2016-03-16

    Postsynaptic responses in many CNS neurons are typically small and variable, often making it difficult to distinguish physiologically relevant signals from background noise. To extract salient information, neurons are thought to integrate multiple synaptic inputs and/or selectively amplify specific synaptic activation patterns. Here, we present evidence for a third strategy: directionally selective ganglion cells (DSGCs) in the mouse retina multiplicatively scale visual signals via a mechanism that requires both nonlinear NMDA receptor (NMDAR) conductances in DSGC dendrites and directionally tuned inhibition provided by the upstream retinal circuitry. Postsynaptic multiplication enables DSGCs to discriminate visual motion more accurately in noisy visual conditions without compromising directional tuning. These findings demonstrate a novel role for NMDARs in synaptic processing and provide new insights into how synaptic and network features interact to accomplish physiologically relevant neural computations. PMID:26948896

  5. Melanopsin-positive intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells: from form to function.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Tiffany M; Do, Michael Tri H; Dacey, Dennis; Lucas, Robert; Hattar, Samer; Matynia, Anna

    2011-11-01

    Melanopsin imparts an intrinsic photosensitivity to a subclass of retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs). Generally thought of as irradiance detectors, ipRGCs target numerous brain regions involved in non-image-forming vision. ipRGCs integrate their intrinsic, melanopsin-mediated light information with rod/cone signals relayed via synaptic connections to influence light-dependent behaviors. Early observations indicated diversity among these cells and recently several specific subtypes have been identified. These subtypes differ in morphological and physiological form, controlling separate functions that range from biological rhythm via circadian photoentrainment, to protective behavioral responses including pupil constriction and light avoidance, and even image-forming vision. In this Mini-Symposium review, we will discuss some recent findings that highlight the diversity in both form and function of these recently discovered atypical photoreceptors. PMID:22072661

  6. Retinal nerve fiber layer and ganglion cell-inner plexiform layer thickness in children with obesity

    PubMed Central

    Demir, Selim; Özer, Samet; Alim, Sait; Güneş, Alper; Ortak, Hüseyin; Yılmaz, Resul

    2016-01-01

    AIM To evaluate retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness analysis of peripapillary optic nerve head (PONH) and macula as well as ganglion cell-inner plexiform layer (GCIPL) thickness in obese children. METHODS Eighty-five children with obesity and 30 controls were included in the study. The thicknesses of the PONH and macula of each subject's right eye were measured by high-resolution spectral-domain optic coherence tomography (OCT). RESULTS The RNFL thicknesses of central macular and PONH were similar between the groups (all P>0.05). The GCIPL thickness was also similar between the groups. However, the RNFL thickness of temporal outer macula were 261.7±13.7 and 268.9±14.3 µm for the obesity and the control group, respectively (P=0.034). CONCLUSION Obesity may cause a reduction in temporal outer macular RNFL thickness. PMID:27158616

  7. Role of HDACs in optic nerve damage-induced nuclear atrophy of retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Schmitt, Heather M; Schlamp, Cassandra L; Nickells, Robert W

    2016-06-20

    Optic neuropathies are characterized by retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death, resulting in the loss of vision. In glaucoma, the most common optic neuropathy, RGC death is initiated by axonal damage, and can be modeled by inducing acute axonal trauma through procedures such as optic nerve crush (ONC) or optic nerve axotomy. One of the early events of RGC death is nuclear atrophy, and is comprised of RGC-specific gene silencing, histone deacetylation, heterochromatin formation, and nuclear shrinkage. These early events appear to be principally regulated by epigenetic mechanisms involving histone deacetylation. Class I histone deacetylases HDACs 1, 2, and 3 are known to play important roles in the process of early nuclear atrophy in RGCs, and studies using both inhibitors and genetic ablation of Hdacs also reveal a critical role in the cell death process. Select inhibitors, such as those being developed for cancer therapy, may also provide a viable secondary treatment option for optic neuropathies. PMID:26733303

  8. Rescuing axons from degeneration does not affect retinal ganglion cell death.

    PubMed

    de Lima, S; Mietto, B S; Paula, C; Muniz, T; Martinez, A M B; Gardino, P F

    2016-01-01

    After a traumatic injury to the central nervous system, the distal stumps of axons undergo Wallerian degeneration (WD), an event that comprises cytoskeleton and myelin breakdown, astrocytic gliosis, and overexpression of proteins that inhibit axonal regrowth. By contrast, injured neuronal cell bodies show features characteristic of attempts to initiate the regenerative process of elongating their axons. The main molecular event that leads to WD is an increase in the intracellular calcium concentration, which activates calpains, calcium-dependent proteases that degrade cytoskeleton proteins. The aim of our study was to investigate whether preventing axonal degeneration would impact the survival of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) after crushing the optic nerve. We observed that male Wistar rats (weighing 200-400 g; n=18) treated with an exogenous calpain inhibitor (20 mM) administered via direct application of the inhibitor embedded within the copolymer resin Evlax immediately following optic nerve crush showed a delay in the onset of WD. This delayed onset was characterized by a decrease in the number of degenerated fibers (P<0.05) and an increase in the number of preserved fibers (P<0.05) 4 days after injury. Additionally, most preserved fibers showed a normal G-ratio. These results indicated that calpain inhibition prevented the degeneration of optic nerve fibers, rescuing axons from the process of axonal degeneration. However, analysis of retinal ganglion cell survival demonstrated no difference between the calpain inhibitor- and vehicle-treated groups, suggesting that although the calpain inhibitor prevented axonal degeneration, it had no effect on RGC survival after optic nerve damage. PMID:27007653

  9. Retinal Ganglion Cell Damage in an Experimental Rodent Model of Blast-Mediated Traumatic Brain Injury

    PubMed Central

    Mohan, Kabhilan; Kecova, Helga; Hernandez-Merino, Elena; Kardon, Randy H.; Harper, Matthew M.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose. To evaluate retina and optic nerve damage following experimental blast injury. Methods. Healthy adult mice were exposed to an overpressure blast wave using a custom-built blast chamber. The effects of blast exposure on retina and optic nerve function and structure were evaluated using the pattern electroretinogram (pERG), spectral domain optical coherence tomography (OCT), and the chromatic pupil light reflex. Results. Assessment of the pupil response to light demonstrated decreased maximum pupil constriction diameter in blast-injured mice using red light or blue light stimuli 24 hours after injury compared with baseline in the eye exposed to direct blast injury. A decrease in the pupil light reflex was not observed chronically following blast exposure. We observed a biphasic pERG decrease with the acute injury recovering by 24 hours postblast and the chronic injury appearing at 4 months postblast injury. Furthermore, at 3 months following injury, a significant decrease in the retinal nerve fiber layer was observed using OCT compared with controls. Histologic analysis of the retina and optic nerve revealed punctate regions of reduced cellularity in the ganglion cell layer and damage to optic nerves. Additionally, a significant upregulation of proteins associated with oxidative stress was observed acutely following blast exposure compared with control mice. Conclusions. Our study demonstrates that decrements in retinal ganglion cell responses can be detected after blast injury using noninvasive functional and structural tests. These objective responses may serve as surrogate tests for higher CNS functions following traumatic brain injury that are difficult to quantify. PMID:23620426

  10. Rescuing axons from degeneration does not affect retinal ganglion cell death

    PubMed Central

    de Lima, S.; Mietto, B.S.; Paula, C.; Muniz, T.; Martinez, A.M.B.; Gardino, P.F.

    2016-01-01

    After a traumatic injury to the central nervous system, the distal stumps of axons undergo Wallerian degeneration (WD), an event that comprises cytoskeleton and myelin breakdown, astrocytic gliosis, and overexpression of proteins that inhibit axonal regrowth. By contrast, injured neuronal cell bodies show features characteristic of attempts to initiate the regenerative process of elongating their axons. The main molecular event that leads to WD is an increase in the intracellular calcium concentration, which activates calpains, calcium-dependent proteases that degrade cytoskeleton proteins. The aim of our study was to investigate whether preventing axonal degeneration would impact the survival of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) after crushing the optic nerve. We observed that male Wistar rats (weighing 200-400 g; n=18) treated with an exogenous calpain inhibitor (20 mM) administered via direct application of the inhibitor embedded within the copolymer resin Evlax immediately following optic nerve crush showed a delay in the onset of WD. This delayed onset was characterized by a decrease in the number of degenerated fibers (P<0.05) and an increase in the number of preserved fibers (P<0.05) 4 days after injury. Additionally, most preserved fibers showed a normal G-ratio. These results indicated that calpain inhibition prevented the degeneration of optic nerve fibers, rescuing axons from the process of axonal degeneration. However, analysis of retinal ganglion cell survival demonstrated no difference between the calpain inhibitor- and vehicle-treated groups, suggesting that although the calpain inhibitor prevented axonal degeneration, it had no effect on RGC survival after optic nerve damage. PMID:27007653

  11. Retinal ganglion cell neuroprotection induced by activation of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed

    Mata, David; Linn, David M; Linn, Cindy L

    2015-12-01

    The α7nAChR agonist, PNU-282987, has previously been shown to have a neuroprotective effect against loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in an in vivo glaucoma model when the agent was injected into the vitreous chamber of adult Long Evans rat eyes. Here, we characterized the neuroprotective effect of PNU-282987 at the nerve fiber and retinal ganglion cell layer, determined that neuroprotection occurred when the agonist was applied as eye drops and verified detection of the agonist in the retina, using LC/MS/MS. To induce glaucoma-like conditions in adult Long Evans rats, hypertonic saline was injected into the episcleral veins to induce scar tissue and increase intraocular pressure. Within one month, this procedure produced significant loss of RGCs compared to untreated conditions. RGCs were quantified after immunostaining with an antibody against Thy 1.1 and imaged using a confocal microscope. In dose-response studies, concentrations of PNU-282987 were applied to the animal's right eye two times each day, while the left eye acted as an internal control. Eye drops of PNU-282987 resulted in neuroprotection against RGC loss in a dose-dependent manner using concentrations between 100 μM and 2 mM PNU-282987. LC/MS/MS results demonstrated that PNU-282987 was detected in the retina when applied as eye drops, relatively small amounts of PNU-282987 were measured in blood plasma and no PNU-282987 was detected in cardiac tissue. These results support the hypothesis that eye drop application of PNU-282987 can prevent loss of RGCs associated with glaucoma, which can lead to neuroprotective treatments for diseases that involve α7nAChRs. PMID:26239818

  12. Observations on the mode of action of some central depressant drugs on transmission through the cat superior cervical ganglion

    PubMed Central

    Brown, D. A.; Quilliam, J. P.

    1964-01-01

    Methylpentynol, paraldehyde, amylobarbitone and procainamide blocked transmission through the cat superior cervical ganglion, and antagonized the ganglion-stimulating actions of acetylcholine and carbachol injected intra-arterially to the ganglion. Comparison with the effects of tetraethylammonium indicated that the impaired response to acetylcholine could not wholly account for the failure of transmission, which suggested that an impaired release of transmitter substance was a contributory factor. Methylpentynol, paraldehyde and procainamide also blocked the ganglion-stimulating action of potassium chloride. In contrast, amylobarbitone and pentobarbitone did not block the stimulating action of potassium chloride, but antagonized specifically the actions of acetylcholine and carbachol. The anti-acetylcholine activities of the two barbiturate drugs at this site accord with their relative ganglion-blocking activities. It is concluded that the ganglion-blocking action of methylpentynol, paraldehyde and procainamide arises from a nonspecific depression of both presynaptic and postsynaptic elements in the ganglion, but that barbiturate compounds act more specifically on the acetylcholine receptor. PMID:14228128

  13. Separability of stimulus parameter encoding by on-off directionally selective rabbit retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Nowak, Przemyslaw; Dobbins, Allan C.; Gawne, Timothy J.; Grzywacz, Norberto M.

    2011-01-01

    The ganglion cell output of the retina constitutes a bottleneck in sensory processing in that ganglion cells must encode multiple stimulus parameters in their responses. Here we investigate encoding strategies of On-Off directionally selective retinal ganglion cells (On-Off DS RGCs) in rabbits, a class of cells dedicated to representing motion. The exquisite axial discrimination of these cells to preferred vs. null direction motion is well documented: it is invariant with respect to speed, contrast, spatial configuration, spatial frequency, and motion extent. However, these cells have broad direction tuning curves and their responses also vary as a function of other parameters such as speed and contrast. In this study, we examined whether the variation in responses across multiple stimulus parameters is systematic, that is the same for all cells, and separable, such that the response to a stimulus is a product of the effects of each stimulus parameter alone. We extracellularly recorded single On-Off DS RGCs in a superfused eyecup preparation while stimulating them with moving bars. We found that spike count responses of these cells scaled as independent functions of direction, speed, and luminance. Moreover, the speed and luminance functions were common across the whole sample of cells. Based on these findings, we developed a model that accurately predicted responses of On-Off DS RGCs as products of separable functions of direction, speed, and luminance (r = 0.98; P < 0.0001). Such a multiplicatively separable encoding strategy may simplify the decoding of these cells' outputs by the higher visual centers. PMID:21325684

  14. Visual pattern discrimination by population retinal ganglion cells' activities during natural movie stimulation.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ying-Ying; Wang, Ru-Bin; Pan, Xiao-Chuan; Gong, Hai-Qing; Liang, Pei-Ji

    2014-02-01

    In the visual system, neurons often fire in synchrony, and it is believed that synchronous activities of group neurons are more efficient than single cell response in transmitting neural signals to down-stream neurons. However, whether dynamic natural stimuli are encoded by dynamic spatiotemporal firing patterns of synchronous group neurons still needs to be investigated. In this paper we recorded the activities of population ganglion cells in bullfrog retina in response to time-varying natural images (natural scene movie) using multi-electrode arrays. In response to some different brief section pairs of the movie, synchronous groups of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) fired with similar but different spike events. We attempted to discriminate the movie sections based on temporal firing patterns of single cells and spatiotemporal firing patterns of the synchronous groups of RGCs characterized by a measurement of subsequence distribution discrepancy. The discrimination performance was assessed by a classification method based on Support Vector Machines. Our results show that different movie sections of the natural movie elicited reliable dynamic spatiotemporal activity patterns of the synchronous RGCs, which are more efficient in discriminating different movie sections than the temporal patterns of the single cells' spike events. These results suggest that, during natural vision, the down-stream neurons may decode the visual information from the dynamic spatiotemporal patterns of the synchronous group of RGCs' activities. PMID:24465283

  15. Gender difference in the neuroprotective effect of rat bone marrow mesenchymal cells against hypoxia-induced apoptosis of retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Jing; Yu, Jian-xiong

    2016-01-01

    Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells can reduce retinal ganglion cell death and effectively prevent vision loss. Previously, we found that during differentiation, female rhesus monkey bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells acquire a higher neurogenic potential compared with male rhesus monkey bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells. This suggests that female bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells have a stronger neuroprotective effect than male bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells. Here, we first isolated and cultured bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells from female and male rats by density gradient centrifugation. Retinal tissue from newborn rats was prepared by enzymatic digestion to obtain primary retinal ganglion cells. Using the transwell system, retinal ganglion cells were co-cultured with bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells under hypoxia. Cell apoptosis was detected by flow cytometry and caspase-3 activity assay. We found a marked increase in apoptotic rate and caspase-3 activity of retinal ganglion cells after 24 hours of hypoxia compared with normoxia. Moreover, apoptotic rate and caspase-3 activity of retinal ganglion cells significantly decreased with both female and male bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell co-culture under hypoxia compared with culture alone, with more significant effects from female bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells. Our results indicate that bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells exert a neuroprotective effect against hypoxia-induced apoptosis of retinal ganglion cells, and also that female cells have greater neuroprotective ability compared with male cells. PMID:27335573

  16. Gender difference in the neuroprotective effect of rat bone marrow mesenchymal cells against hypoxia-induced apoptosis of retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Jing; Yu, Jian-Xiong

    2016-05-01

    Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells can reduce retinal ganglion cell death and effectively prevent vision loss. Previously, we found that during differentiation, female rhesus monkey bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells acquire a higher neurogenic potential compared with male rhesus monkey bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells. This suggests that female bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells have a stronger neuroprotective effect than male bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells. Here, we first isolated and cultured bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells from female and male rats by density gradient centrifugation. Retinal tissue from newborn rats was prepared by enzymatic digestion to obtain primary retinal ganglion cells. Using the transwell system, retinal ganglion cells were co-cultured with bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells under hypoxia. Cell apoptosis was detected by flow cytometry and caspase-3 activity assay. We found a marked increase in apoptotic rate and caspase-3 activity of retinal ganglion cells after 24 hours of hypoxia compared with normoxia. Moreover, apoptotic rate and caspase-3 activity of retinal ganglion cells significantly decreased with both female and male bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell co-culture under hypoxia compared with culture alone, with more significant effects from female bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells. Our results indicate that bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells exert a neuroprotective effect against hypoxia-induced apoptosis of retinal ganglion cells, and also that female cells have greater neuroprotective ability compared with male cells. PMID:27335573

  17. Intravitreal injection of forskolin, homotaurine, and L-carnosine affords neuroprotection to retinal ganglion cells following retinal ischemic injury

    PubMed Central

    Adornetto, Annagrazia; Cavaliere, Federica; Varano, Giuseppe Pasquale; Rusciano, Dario; Morrone, Luigi Antonio; Corasaniti, Maria Tiziana; Bagetta, Giacinto; Nucci, Carlo

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death is the final event leading to visual impairment in glaucoma; therefore, identification of neuroprotective strategies able to slow down or prevent the process is one of the main challenges for glaucoma research. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the neuroprotective potential of RGC death induced by the in vivo transient increase in intraocular pressure (IOP) of a combined treatment with forskolin, homotaurine, and L-carnosine. Forskolin (7beta-acetoxy-8, 13-epoxy-1a, 6β, 9a-trihydroxy-labd-14-en-11-one) is an activator of adenylate cyclase that decreases IOP by reducing aqueous humor production and functions as a neuroprotector due to its neurotrophin-stimulating activity. Homotaurine is a natural aminosulfonate compound endowed with neuromodulatory effects, while the dipeptide L-carnosine is known for its antioxidant properties. Methods Retinal ischemia was induced in the right eye of adult male Wistar rats by acutely increasing the IOP. Forskolin, homotaurine, and L-carnosine were intravitreally injected and RGC survival evaluated following retrograde labeling with FluoroGold. Total and phosphorylated Akt and glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) protein levels, as well as calpain activity, were analyzed with western blot. Protein kinase A (PKA) was inhibited by intravitreal injection of H89. Results A synergic neuroprotective effect on RGC survival was observed following the combined treatment with forskolin, homotaurine, and L-carnosine compared to forskolin alone. The observed neuroprotection was associated with reduced calpain activity, upregulation of phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt pathway, and inhibition of GSK-3β but was independent from PKA activation and distinct from the hypotensive effects of forskolin. Conclusions A multidrug/multitarget approach, by interfering with several pathways involved in RGC degeneration, may be promising to achieve glaucoma neuroprotection. PMID:26167113

  18. Ephrin-B2 elicits differential growth cone collapse and axon retraction in retinal ganglion cells from distinct retinal regions

    PubMed Central

    Petros, Timothy J.; Bryson, J. Barney; Mason, Carol

    2010-01-01

    The circuit for binocular vision and stereopsis is established at the optic chiasm, where retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axons diverge into the ipsilateral and contralateral optic tracts. In the mouse retina, ventrotemporal (VT) RGCs express the guidance receptor EphB1, which interacts with the repulsive guidance cue ephrin-B2 on radial glia at the optic chiasm to direct VT RGC axons ipsilaterally. RGCs in the ventral retina also express EphB2, which interacts with ephrin-B2, whereas dorsal RGCs express low levels of EphB receptors. To investigate how growth cones of RGCs from different retinal regions respond upon initial contact with ephrin-B2, we utilized time-lapse imaging to characterize the effects of ephrin-B2 on growth cone collapse and axon retraction in real time. We demonstrate that bath application of ephrin-B2 induces rapid and sustained growth cone collapse and axon retraction in VT RGC axons, whereas contralaterally-projecting dorsotemporal RGCs display moderate growth cone collapse and little axon retraction. Dose response curves reveal that contralaterally-projecting ventronasal axons are less sensitive to ephrin-B2 treatment compared to VT axons. Additionally, we uncovered a specific role for Rho kinase signaling in the retraction of VT RGC axons but not in growth cone collapse. The detailed characterization of growth cone behavior in this study comprises an assay for the study of Eph signaling in RGCs, and provides insight into the phenomena of growth cone collapse and axon retraction in general. PMID:20629048

  19. Continuous non-cell autonomous reprogramming to generate retinal ganglion cells for glaucomatous neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Parameswaran, Sowmya; Dravid, Shashank Manohar; Teotia, Pooja; Krishnamoorthy, Raghu R; Qiu, Fang; Toris, Carol; Morrison, John; Ahmad, Iqbal

    2015-06-01

    Glaucoma, where the retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) carrying the visual signals from the retina to the visual centers in the brain are progressively lost, is the most common cause of irreversible blindness. The management approaches, whether surgical, pharmacological, or neuroprotective do not reverse the degenerative changes. The stem cell approach to replace dead RGCs is a viable option but currently faces several barriers, such as the lack of a renewable, safe, and ethical source of RGCs that are functional and could establish contacts with bona fide targets. To address these barriers, we have derived RGCs from the easily accessible adult limbal cells, reprogrammed to pluripotency by a non-nucleic acid approach, thus circumventing the risk of insertional mutagenesis. The generation of RGCs from the induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, also accomplished non-cell autonomously, recapitulated the developmental mechanism, ensuring the predictability and stability of the acquired phenotype, comparable to that of native RGCs at biochemical, molecular, and functional levels. More importantly, the induced RGCs expressed axonal guidance molecules and demonstrated the potential to establish contacts with specific targets. Furthermore, when transplanted in the rat model of ocular hypertension, these cells incorporated into the host RGC layer and expressed RGC-specific markers. Transplantation of these cells in immune-deficient mice did not produce tumors. Together, our results posit retinal progenitors generated from non-nucleic acid-derived iPS cells as a safe and robust source of RGCs for replacing dead RGCs in glaucoma. PMID:25753398

  20. Neuroprotective effects of bis(7)-tacrine against glutamate-induced retinal ganglion cells damage

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Glutamate-mediated excitotoxicity, primarily through N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, may be an important cause of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) death in glaucoma and several other retinal diseases. Bis(7)-tacrine is a noncompetitive NMDA receptors antagonist that can prevent glutamate-induced hippocampal neurons damage. We tested the effects of bis(7)-tacrine against glutamate-induced rat RGCs damage in vitro and in vivo. Results In cultured neonatal rats RGCs, the MTT assay showed that glutamate induced a concentration- and time-dependent toxicity. Bis(7)-tacrine and memantine prevented glutamate-induced cell death in a concentration-dependent manner with IC50 values of 0.028 μM and 0.834 μM, respectively. The anti-apoptosis effects of bis(7)-tacrine were confirmed by annexin V-FITC/PI staining. In vivo, TUNEL analysis and retrograde labeling analysis found that pretreatment with bis(7)-tacrine(0.2 mg/kg) induced a significant neuroprotective effect against glutamate-induced RGCs damage. Conclusions Our results showed that bis(7)-tacrine had neuroprotective effects against glutamate-induced RGCs damage in vitro and in vivo, possibly through the drug's anti-NMDA receptor effects. These findings make bis(7)-tacrine potentially useful for treating a variety of ischemic or traumatic retinopathies inclusive of glaucoma. PMID:20199668

  1. Continuous Non-cell Autonomous Reprogramming to Generate Retinal Ganglion Cells for Glaucomatous Neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Parameswaran, Sowmya; Dravid, Shashank Manohar; Teotia, Pooja; Krishnamoorthy, Raghu R.; Qiu, Fang; Toris, Carol; Morrison, John; Ahmad, Iqbal

    2015-01-01

    Glaucoma, where the retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) carrying the visual signals from the retina to the visual centers in the brain are progressively lost, is the most common cause of irreversible blindness. The management approaches, whether surgical, pharmacological, or neuroprotective do not reverse the degenerative changes. The stem cell approach to replace dead RGCs is a viable option but currently faces several barriers, such as the lack of a renewable, safe, and ethical source of RGCs that are functional and could establish contacts with bona fide targets. To address these barriers, we have derived RGCs from the easily accessible adult limbal cells, re-programmed to pluripotency by a non nucleic acid approach, thus circumventing the risk of insertional mutagenesis. The generation of RGCs from the induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells, also accomplished non-cell autonomously, recapitulated the developmental mechanism, ensuring the predictability and stability of the acquired phenotype, comparable to that of native RGCs at biochemical, molecular and functional levels. More importantly, the induced RGCs expressed axonal guidance molecules and demonstrated the potential to establish contacts with specific targets. Furthermore, when transplanted in the rat model of ocular hypertension, these cells incorporated into the host RGC layer and expressed RGC-specific markers. Transplantation of these cells in immune-deficient mice did not produce tumors. Together, our results posit retinal progenitors generated from non-nucleic acid-derived iPS cells as a safe and robust source of RGCs for replacing dead RGCs in glaucoma. PMID:25753398

  2. Retinal Ganglion Cell Loss is Delayed Following Optic Nerve Crush in NLRP3 Knockout Mice

    PubMed Central

    Puyang, Zhen; Feng, Liang; Chen, Hui; Liang, Peiji; Troy, John B.; Liu, Xiaorong

    2016-01-01

    The NLRP3 inflammasome, a sensor for a variety of pathogen- and host-derived threats, consists of the adaptor ASC (Apoptosis-associated Speck-like protein containing a Caspase Activation and Recruitment Domain (CARD)), pro-caspase-1, and NLRP3 (NOD-Like Receptor family Pyrin domain containing 3). NLRP3-induced neuroinflammation is implicated in the pathogenesis and progression of eye diseases, but it remains unclear whether activation of NLRP3 inflammasome contributes to retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death. Here we examined NLRP3-induced neuroinflammation and RGC survival following partial optic nerve crush (pONC) injury. We showed that NLRP3 was up-regulated in retinal microglial cells following pONC, propagating from the injury site to the optic nerve head and finally the entire retina within one day. Activation of NLRP3-ASC inflammasome led to the up-regulation of caspase-1 and a proinflammatory cytokine, interleukin-1β (IL-1β). In NLRP3 knockout mice, up-regulation of ASC, caspase-1, and IL-1β were all reduced, and, importantly, RGC and axon loss was substantially delayed following pONC injury. The average survival time of RGCs in NLRP3 knockout mice was about one week longer than for control animals. Taken together, our study demonstrated that ablating the NLRP3 gene significantly reduced neuroinflammation and delayed RGC loss after optic nerve crush injury. PMID:26893104

  3. Elevated intracranial pressure causes optic nerve and retinal ganglion cell degeneration in mice.

    PubMed

    Nusbaum, Derek M; Wu, Samuel M; Frankfort, Benjamin J

    2015-07-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop a novel experimental system for the modulation and measurement of intracranial pressure (ICP), and to use this system to assess the impact of elevated ICP on the optic nerve and retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in CD1 mice. This system involved surgical implantation of an infusion cannula and a radiowave based pressure monitoring probe through the skull and into the subarachnoid space. The infusion cannula was used to increase ICP, which was measured by the probe and transmitted to a nearby receiver. The system provided robust and consistent ICP waveforms, was well tolerated, and was stable over time. ICP was elevated to approximately 30 mmHg for one week, after which we assessed changes in optic nerve structure with transmission electron microscopy in cross section and RGC numbers with antibody staining in retinal flat mounts. ICP elevation resulted in optic nerve axonal loss and disorganization, as well as RGC soma loss. We conclude that the controlled manipulation of ICP in active, awake mice is possible, despite their small size. Furthermore, ICP elevation results in visual system phenotypes of optic nerve and RGC degeneration, suggesting that this model can be used to study the impact of ICP on the visual system. Potentially, this model can also be used to study the relationship between ICP and IOP, as well diseases impacted by ICP variation such as glaucoma, idiopathic intracranial hypertension, and the spaceflight-related visual impairment intracranial pressure syndrome. PMID:25912998

  4. Elevated intracranial pressure causes optic nerve and retinal ganglion cell degeneration in mice

    PubMed Central

    Nusbaum, Derek M.; Wu, Samuel M.; Frankfort, Benjamin J.

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop a novel experimental system for the modulation and measurement of intracranial pressure (ICP), and to use this system to assess the impact of elevated ICP on the optic nerve and retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in CD1 mice. This system involved surgical implantation of an infusion cannula and a radiowave based pressure monitoring probe through the skull and into the subarachnoid space. The infusion cannula was used to increase ICP, which was measured by the probe and transmitted to a nearby receiver. The system provided robust and consistent ICP waveforms, was well tolerated, and was stable over time. ICP was elevated to approximately 30 mmHg for one week, after which we assessed changes in optic nerve structure with transmission electron microscopy in cross section and RGC numbers with antibody staining in retinal flat mounts. ICP elevation resulted in optic nerve axonal loss and disorganization, as well as RGC soma loss. We conclude that the controlled manipulation of ICP in active, awake mice is possible, despite their small size. Furthermore, ICP elevation results in visual system phenotypes of optic nerve and RGC degeneration, suggesting that this model can be used to study the impact of ICP on the visual system. Potentially, this model can also be used to study the relationship between ICP and IOP, as well diseases impacted by ICP variation such as glaucoma, idiopathic intracranial hypertension, and the spaceflight-related visual impairment intracranial pressure syndrome. PMID:25912998

  5. Retrograde and Wallerian Axonal Degeneration Occur Synchronously after Retinal Ganglion Cell Axotomy

    PubMed Central

    Kanamori, Akiyasu; Catrinescu, Maria-Magdalena; Belisle, Jonathan M.; Costantino, Santiago; Levin, Leonard A.

    2013-01-01

    Axonal injury and degeneration are pivotal pathological events in diseases of the nervous system. In the past decade, it has been recognized that the process of axonal degeneration is distinct from somal degeneration and that axoprotective strategies may be distinct from those that protect the soma. Preserving the cell body via neuroprotection cannot improve function if the axon is damaged, because the soma is still disconnected from its target. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms of axonal degeneration is critical for developing new therapeutic interventions for axonal disease treatment. We combined in vivo imaging with a multilaser confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscope and in vivo axotomy with a diode-pumped solid-state laser to assess the time course of Wallerian and retrograde degeneration of unmyelinated retinal ganglion cell axons in living rats for 4 weeks after intraretinal axotomy. Laser injury resulted in reproducible axon loss both distal and proximal to the site of injury. Longitudinal polarization-sensitive imaging of axons demonstrated that Wallerian and retrograde degeneration occurred synchronously. Neurofilament immunostaining of retinal whole-mounts confirmed axonal loss and demonstrated sparing of adjacent axons to the axotomy site. In vivo fluorescent imaging of axonal transport and photobleaching of labeled axons demonstrated that the laser axotomy model did not affect adjacent axon function. These results are consistent with a shared mechanism for Wallerian and retrograde degeneration. PMID:22642911

  6. Dendritic Morphology of Caudal Periaqueductal Gray Projecting Retinal Ganglion Cells in Mongolian Gerbil (Meriones unguiculatus)

    PubMed Central

    Ren, Chaoran; Pu, Mingliang; Cui, Qi; So, Kwok-Fai

    2014-01-01

    In this study we investigated the morphological features of the caudal periaqueductal gray (cPAG)-projecting retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in Mongolian gerbils using retrograde labeling, in vitro intracellular injection, confocal microscopy and three-dimensional reconstruction approaches. cPAG-projecting RGCs exhibit small somata (10–17 µm) and irregular dendritic fields (201–298 µm). Sizes of somata and dendritic fields do not show obvious variation at different distance from the optic disk (eccentricity). Dendrites are moderately branched. Morphological analysis (n = 23) reveals that cPAG-projecting RGCs ramified in sublamina a and b in the inner plexiform layer. These cells exhibit different stratification patterns based on the thickness of dendritic bands in sublaminas a and b: majority of analyzed cells (16 out of 23) have two bands of arborizations share similar thickness. The rest of analyzed cells (7 out of 23) exhibit thinner band in sublamina a than in sublamina b. Together, the present study suggests that cPAG of Mongolian gerbil could receive direct retinal inputs from two types of bistratified RGCs. Furthermore, a small subset of melanopsin-expressing RGCs (total 41 in 6 animals) is shown to innervate the rostral PAG (rPAG). Functional characteristics of these non-visual center projecting RGCs remain to be determined. PMID:25054882

  7. Multielectrode array recordings reveal physiological diversity of intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells in the chick embryo.

    PubMed

    Neumann, Tanja; Ziegler, Christiane; Blau, Axel

    2008-05-01

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) play important roles in non-image forming photoreception and participate in the regulation of the circadian rhythm and the pupillary light reflex. The aim of the present work was to characterize the light response of ipRGCs at two developmental stages of the embryonic chick. The electrophysiological study was based on comparative multielectrode array recordings from acute retinal slices. To ensure that light was the only source of excitation, intercellular activity modulation by gap junctions and chemical synapses was inhibited by carbenoxolone and bafilomycin A1, respectively. Action potentials evoked by blue light were detected as early as day 13 of embryonic development, which is notably earlier than the completion of the maturation process of functional rods and cones. Three different response types were distinguished by their response latency and sensitivity to different illumination intensities. At this point it is not clear whether these types just represent different maturation stages or have different morphologies and functions with respect to the non-image forming visual system and circadian entrainment. PMID:18377877

  8. Retinal Ganglion Cell Count Estimates Associated with Early Development of Visual Field Defects in Glaucoma

    PubMed Central

    Medeiros, Felipe A.; Lisboa, Renato; Weinreb, Robert N.; Liebmann, Jeffrey M.; Girkin, Christopher; Zangwill, Linda M.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose To estimate retinal ganglion cell (RGC) losses associated with the earliest development of visual field defects in glaucoma. Design Observational cohort study. Participants The study group included 53 eyes of 53 patients suspected of having glaucoma who were followed as part of the Diagnostic Innovations in Glaucoma (DIGS) study. These eyes had normal standard automated perimetry (SAP) visual fields at baseline and developed repeatable (3 consecutive) abnormal tests during a median follow-up of 6.7 years. An age-matched control group of 124 eyes of 124 healthy subjects recruited from the general population was included. Methods Estimates of RGC counts were obtained using a previously published model which combines estimates of RGC numbers from SAP sensitivity thresholds and retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness measurements with spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SDOCT). For eyes converting to glaucoma, estimates of RGC counts were obtained at the time (within ± 3 months) of the first abnormal visual field, representing the time of earliest detection of visual field losses. Main Outcome Measures Estimates of RGC counts in eyes converting to glaucoma versus healthy eyes. Results The average RGC count estimate in the eyes with early visual field defects was 652057 ± 115829 cells, which was significantly lower than the average of 910584 ± 142412 cells found in healthy eyes (P<0.001). Compared to the average number of RGCs in the healthy group, glaucoma eyes had an average RGC loss of 28.4%, ranging from 6% to 57%, at the time of the earliest visual field defect on SAP. RGC counts performed significantly better than the SDOCT average RNFL thickness parameter in discriminating glaucomatous from healthy eyes with ROC curve areas of 0.95 ± 0.02 versus 0.88 ±0.03, respectively (P=0.001). Conclusion Glaucomatous eyes with the earliest detectable visual field loss on automated perimetry may already show substantial loss of retinal ganglion cells

  9. Genetically Identified Suppressed-by-Contrast Retinal Ganglion Cells Reliably Signal Self-Generated Visual Stimuli

    PubMed Central

    Tien, Nai-Wen; Pearson, James T.; Heller, Charles R.; Demas, Jay

    2015-01-01

    Spike trains of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) are the sole source of visual information to the brain; and understanding how the ∼20 RGC types in mammalian retinae respond to diverse visual features and events is fundamental to understanding vision. Suppressed-by-contrast (SbC) RGCs stand apart from all other RGC types in that they reduce rather than increase firing rates in response to light increments (ON) and decrements (OFF). Here, we genetically identify and morphologically characterize SbC-RGCs in mice, and target them for patch-clamp recordings under two-photon guidance. We find that strong ON inhibition (glycine > GABA) outweighs weak ON excitation, and that inhibition (glycine > GABA) coincides with decreases in excitation at light OFF. These input patterns explain the suppressive spike responses of SbC-RGCs, which are observed in dim and bright light conditions. Inhibition to SbC-RGC is driven by rectified receptive field subunits, leading us to hypothesize that SbC-RGCs could signal pattern-independent changes in the retinal image. Indeed, we find that shifts of random textures matching saccade-like eye movements in mice elicit robust inhibitory inputs and suppress spiking of SbC-RGCs over a wide range of texture contrasts and spatial frequencies. Similarly, stimuli based on kinematic analyses of mouse blinking consistently suppress SbC-RGC spiking. Receiver operating characteristics show that SbC-RGCs are reliable indicators of self-generated visual stimuli that may contribute to central processing of blinks and saccades. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT This study genetically identifies and morphologically characterizes suppressed-by-contrast retinal ganglion cells (SbC-RGCs) in mice. Targeted patch-clamp recordings from SbC-RGCs under two-photon guidance elucidate the synaptic mechanisms mediating spike suppression to contrast steps, and reveal that SbC-RGCs respond reliably to stimuli mimicking saccade-like eye movements and blinks. The similarity of

  10. Calpain-1 and calpain-2 play opposite roles in retinal ganglion cell degeneration induced by retinal ischemia/reperfusion injury.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yubin; Lopez, Dulce; Davey, Pinakin Gunvant; Cameron, D Joshua; Nguyen, Katherine; Tran, Jennifer; Marquez, Elizabeth; Liu, Yan; Bi, Xiaoning; Baudry, Michel

    2016-09-01

    Calpain has been shown to be involved in neurodegeneration, and in particular in retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death resulting from increased intraocular pressure (IOP) and ischemia. However, the specific roles of the two major calpain isoforms, calpain-1 and calpain-2, in RGC death have not been investigated. Here, we show that calpain-1 and calpain-2 were sequentially activated in RGC dendrites after acute IOP elevation. By combining the use of a selective calpain-2 inhibitor (C2I) and calpain-1 KO mice, we demonstrated that calpain-1 activity supported survival, while calpain-2 activity promoted cell death of RGCs after IOP elevation. Calpain-1 activation cleaved PH domain and leucine-rich repeat protein phosphatase 1 (PHLPP1) and activated the Akt pro-survival pathway, while calpain-2 activation cleaved striatal-enriched protein tyrosine phosphatase (STEP) and activated STEP-mediated pro-death pathway in RGCs after IOP elevation. Systemic or intravitreal C2I injection to wild-type mice 2h after IOP elevation promoted RGC survival and improved visual function. Our data indicate that calpain-1 and calpain-2 play opposite roles in high IOP-induced ischemic injury and that a selective calpain-2 inhibitor could prevent acute glaucoma-induced RGC death and blindness. PMID:27185592

  11. A dedicated circuit linking direction selective retinal ganglion cells to primary visual cortex

    PubMed Central

    Cruz-Martín, Alberto; El-Danaf, Rana N.; Osakada, Fumitaka; Sriram, Balaji; Dhande, Onkar S.; Nguyen, Phong L.; Callaway, Edward M.; Ghosh, Anirvan; Huberman, Andrew D.

    2014-01-01

    How specific features in the environment are represented within the brain is an important unanswered question in neuroscience. A subset of retinal neurons, called direction selective ganglion cells (DSGCs) are specialized for detecting motion along specific axes of the visual field1. Despite extensive study of the retinal circuitry that endows DSGCs with their unique tuning properties2,3, their downstream circuitry in the brain and thus their contribution to visual processing has remained unclear. In mice, several different types of DSGCs connect to the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN),4,5,6 the visual thalamic structure that harbors cortical relay neurons. Whether direction selective information computed at the level of the retina is routed to cortical circuits and integrated with other visual channels, however, is unknown. Here we show using viral trans-synaptic circuit mapping7,8 and functional imaging of visually-driven calcium signals in thalamocortical axons, that there is a di-synaptic circuit linking DSGCs with the superficial layers of primary visual cortex (V1). This circuit pools information from multiple types of DSGCs, converges in a specialized subdivision of the dLGN, and delivers direction-tuned and orientation-tuned signals to superficial V1. Notably, this circuit is anatomically segregated from the retino-geniculo-cortical pathway carrying non-direction-tuned visual information to deeper layers of V1, such as layer 4. Thus, the mouse harbors several functionally specialized, parallel retino-geniculo-cortical pathways, one of which originates with retinal DSGCs and delivers direction- and orientation-tuned information specifically to the superficial layers of primary visual cortex. These data provide evidence that direction and orientation selectivity of some V1 neurons may be influenced by the activation of DSGCs. PMID:24572358

  12. Stepwise Differentiation of Retinal Ganglion Cells from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells Enables Analysis of Glaucomatous Neurodegeneration.

    PubMed

    Ohlemacher, Sarah K; Sridhar, Akshayalakshmi; Xiao, Yucheng; Hochstetler, Alexandra E; Sarfarazi, Mansoor; Cummins, Theodore R; Meyer, Jason S

    2016-06-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs), including both embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells, possess the unique ability to readily differentiate into any cell type of the body, including cells of the retina. Although previous studies have demonstrated the ability to differentiate hPSCs to a retinal lineage, the ability to derive retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) from hPSCs has been complicated by the lack of specific markers with which to identify these cells from a pluripotent source. In the current study, the definitive identification of hPSC-derived RGCs was accomplished by their directed, stepwise differentiation through an enriched retinal progenitor intermediary, with resultant RGCs expressing a full complement of associated features and proper functional characteristics. These results served as the basis for the establishment of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from a patient with a genetically inherited form of glaucoma, which results in damage and loss of RGCs. Patient-derived RGCs specifically exhibited a dramatic increase in apoptosis, similar to the targeted loss of RGCs in glaucoma, which was significantly rescued by the addition of candidate neuroprotective factors. Thus, the current study serves to establish a method by which to definitively acquire and identify RGCs from hPSCs and demonstrates the ability of hPSCs to serve as an effective in vitro model of disease progression. Moreover, iPSC-derived RGCs can be utilized for future drug screening approaches to identify targets for the treatment of glaucoma and other optic neuropathies. Stem Cells 2016;34:1553-1562. PMID:26996528

  13. Differential responses to high-frequency electrical stimulation in ON and OFF retinal ganglion cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Twyford, Perry; Cai, Changsi; Fried, Shelley

    2014-04-01

    Objective. The field of retinal prosthetics for artificial vision has advanced considerably in recent years, however clinical outcomes remain inconsistent. The performance of retinal prostheses is likely limited by the inability of electrical stimuli to preferentially activate different types of retinal ganglion cell (RGC). Approach. Here we examine the response of rabbit RGCs to high-frequency stimulation, using biphasic pulses applied at 2000 pulses per second. Responses were recorded using cell-attached patch clamp methods, and stimulation was applied epiretinally via a small cone electrode. Main results. When prolonged stimulus trains were applied to OFF-brisk transient (BT) RGCs, the cells exhibited a non-monotonic relationship between response strength and stimulus amplitude; this response pattern was different from those elicited previously by other electrical stimuli. When the amplitude of the stimulus was modulated transiently from a non-zero baseline amplitude, ON-BT and OFF-BT cells exhibited different activity patterns: ON cells showed an increase in activity while OFF cells exhibited a decrease in activity. Using a different envelope to modulate the amplitude of the stimulus, we observed the opposite effect: ON cells exhibited a decrease in activity while OFF cells show an increase in activity. Significance. As ON and OFF RGCs often exhibit opposing activity patterns in response to light stimulation, this work suggests that high-frequency electrical stimulation of RGCs may be able to elicit responses that are more physiological than traditional pulsatile stimuli. Additionally, the prospect of an electrical stimulus capable of cell-type specific selective activation has broad applications throughout the fields of neural stimulation and neuroprostheses.

  14. A dedicated circuit links direction-selective retinal ganglion cells to the primary visual cortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cruz-Martín, Alberto; El-Danaf, Rana N.; Osakada, Fumitaka; Sriram, Balaji; Dhande, Onkar S.; Nguyen, Phong L.; Callaway, Edward M.; Ghosh, Anirvan; Huberman, Andrew D.

    2014-03-01

    How specific features in the environment are represented within the brain is an important unanswered question in neuroscience. A subset of retinal neurons, called direction-selective ganglion cells (DSGCs), are specialized for detecting motion along specific axes of the visual field. Despite extensive study of the retinal circuitry that endows DSGCs with their unique tuning properties, their downstream circuitry in the brain and thus their contribution to visual processing has remained unclear. In mice, several different types of DSGCs connect to the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN), the visual thalamic structure that harbours cortical relay neurons. Whether direction-selective information computed at the level of the retina is routed to cortical circuits and integrated with other visual channels, however, is unknown. Here we show that there is a di-synaptic circuit linking DSGCs with the superficial layers of the primary visual cortex (V1) by using viral trans-synaptic circuit mapping and functional imaging of visually driven calcium signals in thalamocortical axons. This circuit pools information from several types of DSGCs, converges in a specialized subdivision of the dLGN, and delivers direction-tuned and orientation-tuned signals to superficial V1. Notably, this circuit is anatomically segregated from the retino-geniculo-cortical pathway carrying non-direction-tuned visual information to deeper layers of V1, such as layer 4. Thus, the mouse harbours several functionally specialized, parallel retino-geniculo-cortical pathways, one of which originates with retinal DSGCs and delivers direction- and orientation-tuned information specifically to the superficial layers of the primary visual cortex. These data provide evidence that direction and orientation selectivity of some V1 neurons may be influenced by the activation of DSGCs.

  15. Effects of p-xylene inhalation on axonal transport in the rat retinal ganglion cells

    SciTech Connect

    Padilla, S.S.; Lyerly, D.P. )

    1989-12-01

    Although the solvent xylene is suspected of producing nervous system dysfunction in animals and humans, little is known regarding the neurochemical consequences of xylene inhalation. The intent of this study was to determine the effect of intermittent, acute, and subchronic p-xylene exposure on the axonal transport of proteins and glycoproteins within the rat retinofugal tract. A number of different exposure regimens were tested ranging from 50 ppm for a single 6-hr exposure to 1600 ppm 6 hr/day, 5 days/week, for a total of 8 exposure days. Immediately following removal from the inhalation chambers rats were injected intraocularly with (35S)methionine and (3H)fucose (to label retinal proteins and glycoproteins, respectively) and the axonal transport of labeled macromolecules to axons (optic nerve and optic tract) and nerve endings (lateral geniculate body and superior colliculus) was examined 20 hr after precursor injection. Only relatively severe exposure regimens (i.e., 800 or 1600 ppm 6 hr/day, 5 days/week, for 1.5 weeks) produced significant reductions in axonal transport; there was a moderate reduction in the axonal transport of 35S-labeled proteins in the 800-ppm-treated group which was more widespread in the 1600 ppm-treated group. Transport of 3H-labeled glycoproteins was less affected. Assessment of retinal metabolism immediately after isotope injection indicated that the rate of precursor uptake was not reduced in either treatment group. Furthermore, rapid transport was still substantially reduced in animals exposed to 1600 ppm p-xylene and allowed a 13-day withdrawal period. These data indicate that p-xylene inhalation decreases rapid axonal transport supplied to the projections of the rat retinal ganglion cells immediately after cessation of inhalation exposure and that this decreased transport is still apparent 13 days after the last exposure.

  16. Protective effects of triptolide on retinal ganglion cells in a rat model of chronic glaucoma

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Fan; Wang, Dongmei; Wu, Lingling; Li, Ying

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To study the effects of triptolide, a Chinese herb extract, on retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in a rat model of chronic glaucoma. Methods Eighty Wistar rats were randomly divided into triptolide group (n=40) and normal saline (NS) group (n=40). Angle photocoagulation was used to establish the model of glaucoma, with right eye as laser treated eye and left eye as control eye. Triptolide group received triptolide intraperitoneally daily, while NS group received NS. Intraocular pressure (IOP), anti-CD11b immunofluorescent stain in retina and optic nerve, RGCs count with Nissel stain and microglia count with anti-CD11b immunofluorescence stain in retina flat mounts, retinal tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α mRNA detection by reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction, and double immunofluorescent labeling with anti-TNF-α and anti-CD11b in retinal frozen section were performed. Results Mean IOP of the laser treated eyes significantly increased 3 weeks after photocoagulation (P<0.05), with no statistical difference between the two groups (P>0.05). RGCs survival in the laser treated eyes was significantly improved in the triptolide group than the NS group (P<0.05). Microglia count in superficial retina of the laser treated eyes was significantly less in the triptolide group (30.40±4.90) than the NS group (35.06±7.59) (P<0.05). TNF-α mRNA expression in the retina of the laser treated eyes in the triptolide group decreased by 60% compared with that in the NS group (P<0.01). The double immunofluorescent labeling showed that TNF-α was mainly distributed around the microglia. Conclusion Triptolide improved RGCs survival in this rat model of chronic glaucoma, which did not depend on IOP decrease but might be exerted by inhibiting microglia activities and reducing TNF-α secretion. PMID:26604697

  17. Diversity of Retinal Ganglion Cells Identified by Transient GFP Transfection in Organotypic Tissue Culture of Adult Marmoset Monkey Retina

    PubMed Central

    Moritoh, Satoru; Komatsu, Yusuke; Yamamori, Tetsuo; Koizumi, Amane

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian retina has more diversity of neurons than scientists had once believed in order to establish complicated vision processing. In the monkey retina, morphological diversity of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) besides dominant midget and parasol cells has been suggested. However, characteristic subtypes of RGCs in other species such as bistratified direction-selective ganglion cells (DSGC) have not yet been identified. Increasing interest has been shown in the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) monkey as a “super-model” of neuroscientific research. Here, we established organotypic tissue culture of the adult marmoset monkey retina with particle-mediated gene transfer of GFP to survey the morphological diversity of RGCs. We successfully incubated adult marmoset monkey retinas for 2 to 4 days ex vivo for transient expression of GFP. We morphologically examined 121 RGCs out of more than 3240 GFP-transfected cells in 5 retinas. Among them, we identified monostratified or broadly stratified ganglion cells (midget, parasol, sparse, recursive, thorny, and broad thorny ganglion cells), and bistratified ganglion cells (recursive, large, and small bistratified ganglion cells [blue-ON/yellow-OFF-like]). By this survey, we also found a candidate for bistratified DSGC whose dendrites were well cofasciculated with ChAT-positive starburst dendrites, costratified with ON and OFF ChAT bands, and had honeycomb-shaped dendritic arbors morphologically similar to those in rabbits. Our genetic engineering method provides a new approach to future investigation for morphological and functional diversity of RGCs in the monkey retina. PMID:23336011

  18. Characterization of an Early-Onset, Autosomal Recessive, Progressive Retinal Degeneration in Bengal Cats

    PubMed Central

    Ofri, Ron; Reilly, Christopher M.; Maggs, David J.; Fitzgerald, Paul G.; Shilo-Benjamini, Yael; Good, Kathryn L.; Grahn, Robert A.; Splawski, Danielle D.; Lyons, Leslie A.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose A form of retinal degeneration suspected to be hereditary was discovered in a family of Bengal cats. A breeding colony was established to characterize disease progression clinically, electrophysiologically, and morphologically, and to investigate the mode of inheritance. Methods Affected and related cats were donated by owners for breeding trials and pedigree analysis. Kittens from test and complementation breedings underwent ophthalmic and neuro-ophthalmic examinations and ERG, and globes were evaluated using light microscopy. Results Pedigree analysis, along with test and complementation breedings, indicated autosomal recessive inheritance and suggested that this disease is nonallelic to a retinal degeneration found in Persian cats. Mutation analysis confirmed the disease is not caused by CEP290 or CRX variants found predominantly in Abyssinian and Siamese cats. Ophthalmoscopic signs of retinal degeneration were noted at 9 weeks of age and became more noticeable over the next 4 months. Visual deficits were behaviorally evident by 1 year of age. Electroretinogram demonstrated reduced rod and cone function at 7 and 9 weeks of age, respectively. Rod responses were mostly extinguished at 14 weeks of age; cone responses were minimal by 26 weeks. Histologic degeneration was first observed at 8 weeks, evidenced by reduced photoreceptor numbers, then rapid deterioration of the photoreceptor layer and, subsequently, severe outer retinal degeneration. Conclusions A recessively inherited primary photoreceptor degeneration was characterized in the Bengal cat. The disease is characterized by early onset, with histologic, ophthalmoscopic, and electrophysiological signs evident by 2 months of age, and rapid progression to blindness. PMID:26258614

  19. Retinal Cell Responses to Elevated Intraocular Pressure: A Gene Array Comparison between the Whole Retina and Retinal Ganglion Cell Layer

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Ying; Cepurna, William O.; Dyck, Jennifer A.; Doser, Tom A.; Johnson, Elaine C.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose. To determine and compare gene expression patterns in the whole retina and retinal ganglion cell layer (RGCL) in a rodent glaucoma model. Methods. IOP was unilaterally elevated in Brown Norway rats (N = 26) by injection of hypertonic saline and monitored for 5 weeks. A cDNA microarray was used on whole retinas from one group of eyes with extensive optic nerve injury and on RGCL isolated by laser capture microdissection (LCM) from another group with comparable injury, to determine the significantly up- or downregulated genes and gene categories in both groups. Expression changes of selected genes were examined by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (qPCR) to verify microarray results. Results. Microarray analysis of the whole retina identified 632 genes with significantly changed expression (335 up, 297 down), associated with 9 upregulated and 3 downregulated biological processes. In contrast, the RGCL microarray yielded 3726 genes with significantly changed expression (2003 up, 1723 down), including 60% of those found in whole retina. Thirteen distinct upregulated biological processes were identified in the RGCL, dominated by protein synthesis. Among 11 downregulated processes, axon extension and dendrite morphogenesis and generation of precursor metabolism and energy were uniquely identified in the RGCL. qPCR confirmed significant changes in 6 selected messages in whole retina and 11 in RGCL. Increased Atf3, the most upregulated gene in the RGCL, was confirmed by immunohistochemistry of RGCs. Conclusions. Isolation of RGCL by LCM allows a more refined detection of gene response to elevated pressure and improves the potential of determining cellular mechanisms in RGCs and their supporting cells that could be targets for enhancing RGC survival. PMID:20071680

  20. Estimating the rate of retinal ganglion cell loss to detect glaucoma progression: An observational cohort study.

    PubMed

    Hirooka, Kazuyuki; Izumibata, Saeko; Ukegawa, Kaori; Nitta, Eri; Tsujikawa, Akitaka

    2016-07-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the relationship between glaucoma progression and estimates of the retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) obtained by combining structural and functional measurements in patients with glaucoma.In the present observational cohort study, we examined 116 eyes of 62 glaucoma patients. Using Cirrus optical coherence tomography (OCT), a minimum of 5 serial retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) measurements were performed in all eyes. There was a 3-year separation between the first and last measurements. Visual field (VF) testing was performed on the same day as the RNFL imaging using the Swedish Interactive Threshold Algorithm Standard 30-2 program of the Humphrey Field Analyzer. Estimates of the RGC counts were obtained from standard automated perimetry (SAP) and OCT, with a weighted average then used to determine a final estimate of the number of RGCs for each eye. Linear regression was used to calculate the rate of the RGC loss, and trend analysis was used to evaluate both serial RNFL thicknesses and VF progression.Use of the average RNFL thickness parameter of OCT led to detection of progression in 14 of 116 eyes examined, whereas the mean deviation slope detected progression in 31 eyes. When the rates of RGC loss were used, progression was detected in 41 of the 116 eyes, with a mean rate of RGC loss of -28,260 ± 8110 cells/year.Estimation of the rate of RGC loss by combining structural and functional measurements resulted in better detection of glaucoma progression compared to either OCT or SAP. PMID:27472691

  1. Signaling mechanism for modulation by ATP of glycine receptors on rat retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ping-Ping; Zhang, Gong; Zhou, Wei; Weng, Shi-Jun; Yang, Xiong-Li; Zhong, Yong-Mei

    2016-01-01

    ATP modulates voltage- and ligand-gated channels in the CNS via the activation of ionotropic P2X and metabotropic P2Y receptors. While P2Y receptors are expressed in retinal neurons, the function of these receptors in the retina is largely unknown. Using whole-cell patch-clamp techniques in rat retinal slice preparations, we demonstrated that ATP suppressed glycine receptor-mediated currents of OFF type ganglion cells (OFF-GCs) dose-dependently, and the effect was in part mediated by P2Y1 and P2Y11, but not by P2X. The ATP effect was abolished by intracellular dialysis of a Gq/11 protein inhibitor and phosphatidylinositol (PI)-phospholipase C (PLC) inhibitor, but not phosphatidylcholine (PC)-PLC inhibitor. The ATP effect was accompanied by an increase in [Ca(2+)]i through the IP3-sensitive pathway and was blocked by intracellular Ca(2+)-free solution. Furthermore, the ATP effect was eliminated in the presence of PKC inhibitors. Neither PKA nor PKG system was involved. These results suggest that the ATP-induced suppression may be mediated by a distinct Gq/11/PI-PLC/IP3/Ca(2+)/PKC signaling pathway, following the activation of P2Y1,11 and other P2Y subtypes. Consistently, ATP suppressed glycine receptor-mediated light-evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents of OFF-GCs. These results suggest that ATP may modify the ON-to-OFF crossover inhibition, thus changing action potential patterns of OFF-GCs. PMID:27357477

  2. Signaling mechanism for modulation by ATP of glycine receptors on rat retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ping-Ping; Zhang, Gong; Zhou, Wei; Weng, Shi-Jun; Yang, Xiong-Li; Zhong, Yong-Mei

    2016-01-01

    ATP modulates voltage- and ligand-gated channels in the CNS via the activation of ionotropic P2X and metabotropic P2Y receptors. While P2Y receptors are expressed in retinal neurons, the function of these receptors in the retina is largely unknown. Using whole-cell patch-clamp techniques in rat retinal slice preparations, we demonstrated that ATP suppressed glycine receptor-mediated currents of OFF type ganglion cells (OFF-GCs) dose-dependently, and the effect was in part mediated by P2Y1 and P2Y11, but not by P2X. The ATP effect was abolished by intracellular dialysis of a Gq/11 protein inhibitor and phosphatidylinositol (PI)-phospholipase C (PLC) inhibitor, but not phosphatidylcholine (PC)-PLC inhibitor. The ATP effect was accompanied by an increase in [Ca2+]i through the IP3-sensitive pathway and was blocked by intracellular Ca2+-free solution. Furthermore, the ATP effect was eliminated in the presence of PKC inhibitors. Neither PKA nor PKG system was involved. These results suggest that the ATP-induced suppression may be mediated by a distinct Gq/11/PI-PLC/IP3/Ca2+/PKC signaling pathway, following the activation of P2Y1,11 and other P2Y subtypes. Consistently, ATP suppressed glycine receptor-mediated light-evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents of OFF-GCs. These results suggest that ATP may modify the ON-to-OFF crossover inhibition, thus changing action potential patterns of OFF-GCs. PMID:27357477

  3. Losartan Treatment Protects Retinal Ganglion Cells and Alters Scleral Remodeling in Experimental Glaucoma

    PubMed Central

    Pitha, Ian F.; Nguyen, Cathy; Steinhart, Matthew R.; Nguyen, Thao D.; Pease, Mary Ellen; Oglesby, Ericka N.; Berlinicke, Cynthia A.; Mitchell, Katherine L.; Kim, Jessica; Jefferys, Joan J.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose To determine if oral losartan treatment decreases the retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death caused by experimental intraocular pressure (IOP) elevation in mice. Methods We produced IOP increase in CD1 mice and performed unilateral optic nerve crush. Mice received oral losartan, spironolactone, enalapril, or no drug to test effects of inhibiting angiotensin receptors. IOP was monitored by Tonolab, and blood pressure was monitored by tail cuff device. RGC loss was measured in masked axon counts and RGC bodies by β-tubulin labeling. Scleral changes that could modulate RGC injury were measured including axial length, scleral thickness, and retinal layer thicknesses, pressure-strain behavior in inflation testing, and study of angiotensin receptors and pathways by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, Western blot, and immunohistochemistry. Results Losartan treatment prevented significant RGC loss (median loss = 2.5%, p = 0.13), while median loss with water, spironolactone, and enalapril treatments were 26%, 28% and 43%; p < 0.0001). The lower RGC loss with losartan was significantly less than the loss with spironolactone or enalapril (regression model p = 0.001; drug treatment group term p = 0.01). Both losartan and enalapril significantly lowered blood pressure (p< 0.001), but losartan was protective, while enalapril led to worse than water-treated RGC loss. RGC loss after crush injury was unaffected by losartan treatment (difference from control p = 0.9). Survival of RGC in cell culture was not prolonged by sartan treatment. Axonal transport blockade after 3 day IOP elevations was less in losartan-treated than in control glaucoma eyes (p = 0.007). Losartan inhibited effects of glaucoma, including reduction in extracellular signal-related kinase activity and modification of glaucoma-related changes in scleral thickness and creep under controlled IOP. Conclusions The neuroprotective effect of losartan in mouse glaucoma is associated with adaptive changes

  4. Neuroprotection by GH against excitotoxic-induced cell death in retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Moreno, Carlos G; Ávila-Mendoza, José; Wu, Yilun; Arellanes-Licea, Elvira Del Carmen; Louie, Marcela; Luna, Maricela; Arámburo, Carlos; Harvey, Steve

    2016-08-01

    Retinal growth hormone (GH) has been shown to promote cell survival in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) during developmental waves of apoptosis during chicken embryonic development. The possibility that it might also against excitotoxicity-induced cell death was therefore examined in the present study, which utilized quail-derived QNR/D cells as an in vitro RGC model. QNR/D cell death was induced by glutamate in the presence of BSO (buthionine sulfoxamide) (an enhancer of oxidative stress), but this was significantly reduced (P<0.01) in the presence of exogenous recombinant chicken GH (rcGH). Similarly, QNR/D cells that had been prior transfected with a GH plasmid to overexpress secreted and non-secreted GH. This treatment reduced the number of TUNEL-labeled cells and blocked their release of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). In a further experiment with dissected neuroretinal explants from ED (embryonic day) 10 embryos, rcGH treatment of the explants also reduced (P<0.01) the number of glutamate-BSO-induced apoptotic cells and blocked the explant release of LDH. This neuroprotective action was likely mediated by increased STAT5 phosphorylation and increased bcl-2 production, as induced by exogenous rcGH treatment and the media from GH-overexpressing QNR/D cells. As rcGH treatment and GH-overexpression cells also increased the content of IGF-1 and IGF-1 mRNA this neuroprotective action of GH is likely to be mediated, at least partially, through an IGF-1 mechanism. This possibility is supported by the fact that the siRNA knockdown of GH or IGF-1 significantly reduced QNR/D cell viability, as did the immunoneutralization of IGF-1. GH is therefore neuroprotective against excitotoxicity-induced RGC cell death by anti-apoptotic actions involving IGF-1 stimulation. PMID:27129619

  5. Transient ipsilateral retinal ganglion cell projections to the brain: Extent, targeting and disappearance

    PubMed Central

    Soares, Célia A.; Mason, Carol A.

    2015-01-01

    During development of the mammalian eye, the first retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) that extend to the brain are located in the dorsocentral retina. These RGCs extend to either ipsilateral or contralateral targets, but the ipsilateral projections do not survive into postnatal periods. The function and means of disappearance of the transient ipsilateral projection are not known. We have followed the course of this transient early ipsilateral cohort of RGCs, paying attention to how far they extend, whether they enter targets and if so, which ones, and the time course of their disappearance. The dorsocentral ipsilateral RGC axons were traced using DiI labeling at E13.5 and 15.5 to compare the proportion of ipsi-versus contralateral projections during the first period of growth. In utero electroporation of E12.5 retina with GFP constructs was used to label axons that could be visualized at succeeding time points into postnatal ages. Our results show that the earliest ipsilateral axons grow along the cellular border of the brain, and are segregated from the laterally-postioned contralateral axons from the same retinal origin. In agreement with previous reports, although many early RGCs extend ipsilaterally, after E16 their number rapidly declines. Nonetheless, some ipsilateral axons from the dorsocentral retina enter the superior colliculus (SC) and arborize minimally, but very few enter the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) and those that do extend only short branches. While the mechanism of selective axonal disappearance remains elusive, these data give further insight into establishment of the visual pathways. PMID:25788284

  6. Retroviral misexpression of cVax disturbs retinal ganglion cell axon fasciculation and intraretinal pathfinding in vivo and guidance of nasal ganglion cell axons in vivo.

    PubMed

    Mühleisen, Thomas W; Agoston, Zsuzsa; Schulte, Dorothea

    2006-09-01

    The transcription factor cVax (Vax2) is expressed in the ventral neural retina and restricted expression is a prerequisite for at least three prominent aspects of retinal dorsal-ventral patterning: polarized expression of EphB/B-ephrin molecules, the retinotectal projection and the distribution of rod photoreceptors across the retina. In the chick retina, the fasciculation pattern of ganglion cell axons also differs between the dorsal and ventral eye. To investigate the molecular mechanisms involved, the nerve fiber layer was analyzed after retroviral misexpression of several factors known to regulate the positional specification of retinal ganglion cells. Forced cVax expression ventralized the fasciculation pattern and caused axon pathfinding errors near the optic disc. Ectopic expression of different ephrin molecules indicated that axon fasciculation is, at least in part, mediated by the EphB system. Finally, we report that retroviral misexpression of cVax increased the pool of EphA4 receptors phosphorylated on tyrosine residues and altered the guidance preference of nasal axons in vitro. These results identify novel functions for cVax in intraretinal axon fasciculation and pathfinding as well as suggest a mechanism to explain how restricted cVax expression may influence map formation along the dorso-ventral and antero-posterior axes of the optic tectum. PMID:16769047

  7. Neural precursors isolated from the developing cat brain show retinal integration following transplantation to the retina of the dystrophic cat.

    PubMed

    Klassen, Henry; Schwartz, Philip H; Ziaeian, Boback; Nethercott, Hubert; Young, Michael J; Bragadottir, Ragnheidur; Tullis, Gregory E; Warfvinge, Karin; Narfstrom, Kristina

    2007-01-01

    The cat has served as an important nonrodent research model for neurophysiology and retinal degenerative disease processes, yet very little is known about feline neural precursor cells. To culture these cells and evaluate marker expression, brains were dissected from 45-day-old fetuses, enzymatically dissociated, and grown in the presence of EGF, bFGF and PDGF. Expanded cells widely expressed nestin, Sox2, Ki-67, fusin (CXCR4) and vimentin, while subpopulations expressed A2B5, GFAP, or beta-III tubulin. Precursors prelabeled with BrdU and/or transduced with a recombinant lentivirus that expresses GFP were transplanted subretinally in five dystrophic Abyssinian cats. Two to 4 weeks following surgery, histology showed survival of grafted cells in three of the animals. Labeled cells were found in the neuroretina and RPE layer, as well as in the vitreous and the vicinity of Bruch's membrane. There was no evidence of an immunologic response in any of the eyes. Neural precursor cells can therefore be cultured from the developing cat brain and survive as allografts for up to 4 weeks without immune suppression. The feasibility of deriving and transplanting feline neural precursor cells, combined with the availability of the dystrophic Abyssinian cat, provide a new feline model system for the study of retinal repair. PMID:17565557

  8. Restoring visual function to blind mice with a photoswitch that exploits electrophysiological remodeling of retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Tochitsky, Ivan; Polosukhina, Aleksandra; Degtyar, Vadim E.; Gallerani, Nicholas; Smith, Caleb M.; Friedman, Aaron; Van Gelder, Russell N.; Trauner, Dirk; Kaufer, Daniela; Kramer, Richard H.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are blinding diseases caused by the degeneration of rods and cones, leaving the remainder of the visual system unable to respond to light. Here we report a chemical photoswitch named DENAQ that restores retinal responses to white light of intensity similar to ordinary daylight. A single intraocular injection of DENAQ photosensitizes the blind retina for days, restoring electrophysiological and behavioral responses with no toxicity. Experiments on mouse strains with functional, non-functional, or degenerated rods and cones show that DENAQ is effective only in retinas with degenerated photoreceptors. DENAQ confers light sensitivity on a hyperpolarization-activated inward current that is enhanced in degenerated retina, enabling optical control of retinal ganglion cell firing The acceptable light sensitivity, favorable spectral sensitivity, and selective targeting to diseased tissue make DENAQ a prime drug candidate for vision restoration in patients with end-stage RP and AMD. PMID:24559673

  9. Restoring visual function to blind mice with a photoswitch that exploits electrophysiological remodeling of retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Tochitsky, Ivan; Polosukhina, Aleksandra; Degtyar, Vadim E; Gallerani, Nicholas; Smith, Caleb M; Friedman, Aaron; Van Gelder, Russell N; Trauner, Dirk; Kaufer, Daniela; Kramer, Richard H

    2014-02-19

    Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are blinding diseases caused by the degeneration of rods and cones, leaving the remainder of the visual system unable to respond to light. Here, we report a chemical photoswitch named DENAQ that restores retinal responses to white light of intensity similar to ordinary daylight. A single intraocular injection of DENAQ photosensitizes the blind retina for days, restoring electrophysiological and behavioral responses with no toxicity. Experiments on mouse strains with functional, nonfunctional, or degenerated rods and cones show that DENAQ is effective only in retinas with degenerated photoreceptors. DENAQ confers light sensitivity on a hyperpolarization-activated inward current that is enhanced in degenerated retina, enabling optical control of retinal ganglion cell firing. The acceptable light sensitivity, favorable spectral sensitivity, and selective targeting to diseased tissue make DENAQ a prime drug candidate for vision restoration in patients with end-stage RP and AMD. PMID:24559673

  10. Complimentary action: C1q increases ganglion cell survival in an in vitro model of retinal degeneration.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Linnéa; Arnér, Karin; Blom, Anna M; Ghosh, Fredrik

    2016-09-15

    Using a previously described retinal explant culture system as an acute injury model, we here explore the role of C1q, the initiator of the classical complement pathway, in neuronal cell survival and retinal homeostasis. Full-thickness adult rat retinal explants were divided into four groups, receiving the following supplementation: C1q (50nM), C1-inhibitor (C1-inh; Berinert; 500mg/l), C1q+C1-inh, and no supplementation (culture controls). Explants were kept for 12h or 2days after which they were examined morphologically and with a panel of immunohistochemical markers. C1q supplementation protects ganglion cells from degeneration within the explant in vitro system. This effect is correlated to an attenuated endogenous production of C1q, and a quiesced gliotic response. PMID:27609284

  11. Endocannabinoid signaling enhances visual responses through modulation of intracellular chloride levels in retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Miraucourt, Loïs S; Tsui, Jennifer; Gobert, Delphine; Desjardins, Jean-François; Schohl, Anne; Sild, Mari; Spratt, Perry; Castonguay, Annie; De Koninck, Yves; Marsh-Armstrong, Nicholas; Wiseman, Paul W; Ruthazer, Edward S

    2016-01-01

    Type 1 cannabinoid receptors (CB1Rs) are widely expressed in the vertebrate retina, but the role of endocannabinoids in vision is not fully understood. Here, we identified a novel mechanism underlying a CB1R-mediated increase in retinal ganglion cell (RGC) intrinsic excitability acting through AMPK-dependent inhibition of NKCC1 activity. Clomeleon imaging and patch clamp recordings revealed that inhibition of NKCC1 downstream of CB1R activation reduces intracellular Cl− levels in RGCs, hyperpolarizing the resting membrane potential. We confirmed that such hyperpolarization enhances RGC action potential firing in response to subsequent depolarization, consistent with the increased intrinsic excitability of RGCs observed with CB1R activation. Using a dot avoidance assay in freely swimming Xenopus tadpoles, we demonstrate that CB1R activation markedly improves visual contrast sensitivity under low-light conditions. These results highlight a role for endocannabinoids in vision and present a novel mechanism for cannabinoid modulation of neuronal activity through Cl− regulation. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.15932.001 PMID:27501334

  12. Activation of autophagy induces retinal ganglion cell death in a chronic hypertensive glaucoma model

    PubMed Central

    Park, H-Y Lopilly; Kim, J H; Park, C K

    2012-01-01

    Autophagy is reported to have important roles in relation to regulated cell death pathways and neurodegeneration. This study used chronic hypertensive glaucoma rat model to investigate whether the autophagy pathway has a role in the apoptosis of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) after chronic intraocular pressure (IOP) elevation. Under electron microscopy, autophagosomes were markedly accumulated in the dendrites and cytoplasm of RGCs after IOP elevation. Western blot analysis showed that LC3-II/LC3-I and beclin-1 were upregulated throughout the 8-weeks period after IOP elevation. The pattern of LC3 immunostaining showed autophagy activation in the cytoplasm of RGCs to increase and peak at 4 weeks after IOP elevation. Most of these LC3B-positive RGCs underwent apoptosis by terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase-mediated biotinylated UTP nick end labeling, and inhibition of autophagy with 3-methyladenine decreased RGC apoptosis. The activated pattern shows that autophagy is initially activated in the dendrites of the RGCs, but, thereafter autophagy is mainly activated in the cytoplasm of RGCs. This may show that autophagy is differently regulated in different compartments of the neuron. This present study showed that autophgy is activated in RGCs and has a role in autophagic cell death after chronic IOP elevation. PMID:22476098

  13. The types of retinal ganglion cells: current status and implications for neuronal classification.

    PubMed

    Sanes, Joshua R; Masland, Richard H

    2015-07-01

    In the retina, photoreceptors pass visual information to interneurons, which process it and pass it to retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). Axons of RGCs then travel through the optic nerve, telling the rest of the brain all it will ever know about the visual world. Research over the past several decades has made clear that most RGCs are not merely light detectors, but rather feature detectors, which send a diverse set of parallel, highly processed images of the world on to higher centers. Here, we review progress in classification of RGCs by physiological, morphological, and molecular criteria, making a particular effort to distinguish those cell types that are definitive from those for which information is partial. We focus on the mouse, in which molecular and genetic methods are most advanced. We argue that there are around 30 RGC types and that we can now account for well over half of all RGCs. We also use RGCs to examine the general problem of neuronal classification, arguing that insights and methods from the retina can guide the classification enterprise in other brain regions. PMID:25897874

  14. Spectral properties of dark-adapted retinal ganglion cells in the plaice (Pleuronectes platessa, L.)

    PubMed Central

    Hammond, P.

    1968-01-01

    1. Spectral, spatial and temporal properties of receptive fields of dark-adapted, on—off retinal ganglion cells in the intact eye of the plaice, were analysed by recording from their axon terminals in the superficial layers of the optic tectum with indium micro-electrodes. 2. Two cell-types were identified. The first gave fast-adapting, spectrally opponent on—off responses without centre-surround subdivisions of the receptive field. On and off response-components were mutually antagonistic. The second type gave slow-adapting on—off or off responses for different stimulus positions within the receptive field, with centre-surround or adjacent field configurations. Only on—off centre cells, showing mutual antagonism between field centre and surround, or off centre cells with inhibitory centres, were found. These cells had weak opponent or non-opponent properties. 3. Most cells of each type received inputs both from cones and rods. At stimulus intensities suprathreshold for cones, response-components gave spectral peaks which have been classified into one of four wave-length ranges; blue, 440-460 nm; blue-green, 470-490 nm; green, 510-540 nm; and orange, 560-590 nm. No cells analysed gave sensitivity maxima in the red. At low stimulus intensities all cells with rod input gave a single spectral peak between 510 and 530 nm. ImagesFig. 3Fig. 4Fig. 9 PMID:5649636

  15. Differentiation of human ESCs to retinal ganglion cells using a CRISPR engineered reporter cell line

    PubMed Central

    Sluch, Valentin M.; Davis, Chung-ha O.; Ranganathan, Vinod; Kerr, Justin M.; Krick, Kellin; Martin, Russ; Berlinicke, Cynthia A.; Marsh-Armstrong, Nicholas; Diamond, Jeffrey S.; Mao, Hai-Quan; Zack, Donald J.

    2015-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) injury and cell death from glaucoma and other forms of optic nerve disease is a major cause of irreversible vision loss and blindness. Human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC)-derived RGCs could provide a source of cells for the development of novel therapeutic molecules as well as for potential cell-based therapies. In addition, such cells could provide insights into human RGC development, gene regulation, and neuronal biology. Here, we report a simple, adherent cell culture protocol for differentiation of hPSCs to RGCs using a CRISPR-engineered RGC fluorescent reporter stem cell line. Fluorescence-activated cell sorting of the differentiated cultures yields a highly purified population of cells that express a range of RGC-enriched markers and exhibit morphological and physiological properties typical of RGCs. Additionally, we demonstrate that aligned nanofiber matrices can be used to guide the axonal outgrowth of hPSC-derived RGCs for in vitro optic nerve-like modeling. Lastly, using this protocol we identified forskolin as a potent promoter of RGC differentiation. PMID:26563826

  16. Connexin 36 and rod bipolar cell independent rod pathways drive retinal ganglion cells and optokinetic reflexes.

    PubMed

    Cowan, Cameron S; Abd-El-Barr, Muhammad; van der Heijden, Meike; Lo, Eric M; Paul, David; Bramblett, Debra E; Lem, Janis; Simons, David L; Wu, Samuel M

    2016-02-01

    Rod pathways are a parallel set of synaptic connections which enable night vision by relaying and processing rod photoreceptor light responses. We use dim light stimuli to isolate rod pathway contributions to downstream light responses then characterize these contributions in knockout mice lacking rod transducin-α (Trα), or certain pathway components associated with subsets of rod pathways. These comparisons reveal that rod pathway driven light sensitivity in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) is entirely dependent on Trα, but partially independent of connexin 36 (Cx36) and rod bipolar cells. Pharmacological experiments show that rod pathway-driven and Cx36-independent RGC ON responses are also metabotropic glutamate receptor 6-dependent. To validate the RGC findings in awake, behaving animals we measured optokinetic reflexes (OKRs), which are sensitive to changes in ON pathways. Scotopic OKR contrast sensitivity was lost in Trα(-/-) mice, but indistinguishable from controls in Cx36(-/-) and rod bipolar cell knockout mice. Mesopic OKRs were also altered in mutant mice: Trα(-/-) mice had decreased spatial acuity, rod BC knockouts had decreased sensitivity, and Cx36(-/-) mice had increased sensitivity. These results provide compelling evidence against the complete Cx36 or rod BC dependence of night vision's ON component. Further, the findings suggest the parallel nature of rod pathways provides considerable redundancy to scotopic light sensitivity but distinct contributions to mesopic responses through complicated interactions with cone pathways. PMID:26718442

  17. Electrical activity of ON and OFF retinal ganglion cells: a modelling study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, Tianruo; Tsai, David; Morley, John W.; Suaning, Gregg J.; Kameneva, Tatiana; Lovell, Nigel H.; Dokos, Socrates

    2016-04-01

    Objective. Retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) demonstrate a large range of variation in their ionic channel properties and morphologies. Cell-specific properties are responsible for the unique way RGCs process synaptic inputs, as well as artificial electrical signals such as that from a visual prosthesis. A cell-specific computational modelling approach allows us to examine the functional significance of regional membrane channel expression and cell morphology. Approach. In this study, an existing RGC ionic model was extended by including a hyperpolarization activated non-selective cationic current as well as a T-type calcium current identified in recent experimental findings. Biophysically-defined model parameters were simultaneously optimized against multiple experimental recordings from ON and OFF RGCs. Main results. With well-defined cell-specific model parameters and the incorporation of detailed cell morphologies, these models were able to closely reconstruct and predict ON and OFF RGC response properties recorded experimentally. Significance. The resulting models were used to study the contribution of different ion channel properties and spatial structure of neurons to RGC activation. The techniques of this study are generally applicable to other excitable cell models, increasing the utility of theoretical models in accurately predicting the response of real biological neurons.

  18. Nuclear translocation and overexpression of GAPDH by the hyper-pressure in retinal ganglion cell

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Choong-Il; Lee, Sung-Ho; Seong, Gong-Je; Kim, Yeon-Hyang; Lee, Mi-Young . E-mail: miyoung@sch.ac.kr

    2006-03-24

    To investigate the effect of hyper-pressure on retinal ganglion cells (RGC-5), RGC-5 cells were exposed to an ambient hydrostatic pressure of 100 mm Hg. Upon treatment, the proliferation of RGC-5 cells was inhibited and neuronal apoptosis was detected by specific apoptosis marker TUNEL (terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick-end labeling). To probe into the mechanism mediating the apoptosis of RGC-5 cells in 100 mm Hg, protein profile alterations following hyper-pressure treatment were examined using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE) followed by MALDI-TOF. Out of the 400 protein spots of RGC-5 cells detected on 2-DE gels, 37 differentially expressed protein spots were further identified using in gel tryptic digestion and mass spectrometry. Among these proteins, glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate-dehydrogenase (GAPDH) was significantly expressed 10 times more in 100 mm Hg than in normal pressure. The accumulation of GAPDH in the nucleus and its translocation from the cytosol to the nucleus in 100 mm Hg were observed using a microscope. These results suggest that the hyper-pressure-induced apoptosis in RGC-5 cells may be involved with not only the increase of GAPDH expression, but also the accumulation and the translocalization of GAPDH to the nucleus.

  19. NF-Protocadherin Regulates Retinal Ganglion Cell Axon Behaviour in the Developing Visual System

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Louis C.; Harris, William A.; Holt, Christine E.; Piper, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Cell adhesion molecules play a central role in mediating axonal tract development within the nascent nervous system. NF-protocadherin (NFPC), a member of the non-clustered protocadherin family, has been shown to regulate retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axon and dendrite initiation, as well as influencing axonal navigation within the mid-optic tract. However, whether NFPC mediates RGC axonal behaviour at other positions within the optic pathway remains unclear. Here we report that NFPC plays an important role in RGC axonogenesis, but not in intraretinal guidance. Moreover, axons with reduced NFPC levels exhibit insensitivity to Netrin-1, an attractive guidance cue expressed at the optic nerve head. Netrin-1 induces rapid turnover of NFPC localized to RGC growth cones, suggesting that the regulation of NFPC protein levels may underlie Netrin-1-mediated entry of RGC axons into the optic nerve head. At the tectum, we further reveal a function for NFPC in controlling RGC axonal entry into the final target area. Collectively, our results expand our understanding of the role of NFPC in RGC guidance and illustrate that this adhesion molecule contributes to axon behaviour at multiple points in the optic pathway. PMID:26489017

  20. Imipramine protects retinal ganglion cells from oxidative stress through the tyrosine kinase receptor B signaling pathway

    PubMed Central

    Han, Ming-lei; Liu, Guo-hua; Guo, Jin; Yu, Shu-juan; Huang, Jing

    2016-01-01

    Retinal ganglion cell (RGC) degeneration is irreversible in glaucoma and tyrosine kinase receptor B (TrkB)-associated signaling pathways have been implicated in the process. In this study, we attempted to examine whether imipramine, a tricyclic antidepressant, may protect hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)-induced RGC degeneration through the activation of the TrkB pathway in RGC-5 cell lines. RGC-5 cell lines were pre-treated with imipramine 30 minutes before exposure to H2O2. Western blot assay showed that in H2O2 -damaged RGC-5 cells, imipramine activated TrkB pathways through extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase/TrkB phosphorylation. TUNEL staining assay also demonstrated that imipramine ameliorated H2O2 -induced apoptosis in RGC-5 cells. Finally, TrkB-IgG intervention was able to reverse the protective effect of imipramine on H2O2 -induced RGC-5 apoptosis. Imipramine therefore protects RGCs from oxidative stress-induced apoptosis through the TrkB signaling pathway. PMID:27127489

  1. Sectorial loss of retinal ganglion cells in inherited photoreceptor degeneration is due to RGC death

    PubMed Central

    García-Ayuso, Diego; Salinas-Navarro, Manuel; Nadal-Nicolás, Francisco Manuel; Ortín-Martínez, Arturo; Agudo-Barriuso, Marta; Vidal-Sanz, Manuel; Villegas-Pérez, María P

    2014-01-01

    Aims To investigate the cause of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) loss in dystrophic aged Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) rats. Methods RCS-p+ (dystrophic) female rats of postnatal times (P365, P450 and P540) and age-matched RCS-p1 rdy+ (non-dystrophic) rats were used. In whole-mounted retinas, RGCs were doubly labelled with Fluorogold (FG) retrogradely transported from the superior colliculi and Brn3a immunohistochemistry. RGC axons were labelled with anti-neurofilament antibodies. Automatic image analysis techniques allowed quantification of the total population of RGCs per retina and construction of isodensity maps to investigate RGC topology. Results Dystrophic retinas showed at all times studied wedge-shaped sectors devoid of FG+ and Brn3a+ RGCs. These sectors were also devoid of neurofilament-labelled axons. The total number of FG+RGC and Brn3a+RGC per retina was significantly smaller in dystrophic rats at P540, revealing RGC death at this age. The total number of FG+RGCs was smaller than those of Brn3a+RGCs at P540, indicating a disturbance of the retrograde axonal transport at this age. Conclusions RGC double labelling documents that sectorial RGC loss in aged dystrophic RCS rats is mainly due to RGC death, although a deficit of the retrograde axonal transport exists also at the more advanced ages. PMID:24326325

  2. SUBTYPE-SPECIFIC REGENERATION OF RETINAL GANGLION CELLS FOLLOWING AXOTOMY: EFFECTS OF OSTEOPONTIN AND MTOR SIGNALING

    PubMed Central

    Duan, Xin; Qiao, Mu; Bei, Fengfeng; Kim, In-Jung; He, Zhigang; Sanes, Joshua R.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY In mammals, few retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) survive following axotomy and even fewer regenerate axons. This could reflect differential extrinsic influences or the existence of subpopulations that vary in their responses to injury. We tested these alternatives by comparing responses of molecularly distinct subsets of mouse RGCs to axotomy. Survival rates varied dramatically among subtypes, with alpha-RGCs (αRGCs) surviving preferentially. Among survivors, αRGCs accounted for nearly all regeneration following down-regulation of PTEN, which activates the mTOR pathway. αRGCs have uniquely high mTOR signaling levels among RGCs and also selectively express osteopontin (OPN) and receptors for the growth factor, insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1). Administration of OPN plus IGF-1 promotes regeneration as effectively as down-regulation of PTEN; however, regeneration is still confined to αRGCs. Our results reveal dramatic subtype-specific differences in the ability of RGCs to survive and regenerate following injury, and they identify promising agents for promoting axonal regeneration. PMID:25754821

  3. Teneurin-3 Specifies Morphological and Functional Connectivity of Retinal Ganglion Cells in the Vertebrate Visual System

    PubMed Central

    Antinucci, Paride; Nikolaou, Nikolas; Meyer, Martin P.; Hindges, Robert

    2013-01-01

    Summary A striking feature of the CNS is the precise wiring of its neuronal connections. During vertebrate visual system development, different subtypes of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) form specific connections with their corresponding synaptic partners. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms remain to be fully elucidated. Here, we report that the cell-adhesive transmembrane protein Teneurin-3 (Tenm3) is required by zebrafish RGCs for acquisition of their correct morphological and functional connectivity in vivo. Teneurin-3 is expressed by RGCs and their presynaptic amacrine and postsynaptic tectal cell targets. Knockdown of Teneurin-3 leads to RGC dendrite stratification defects within the inner plexiform layer, as well as mistargeting of dendritic processes into outer portions of the retina. Moreover, a subset of RGC axons exhibits tectal laminar arborization errors. Finally, functional analysis of RGCs targeting the tectum reveals a selective deficit in the development of orientation selectivity after Teneurin-3 knockdown. These results suggest that Teneurin-3 plays an instructive role in the functional wiring of the vertebrate visual system. PMID:24183672

  4. Diffuse Traumatic Axonal Injury in the Optic Nerve Does Not Elicit Retinal Ganglion Cell Loss

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jiaqiong; Fox, Michael A.; Povlishock, John T.

    2013-01-01

    Much of the morbidity following traumatic brain injury (TBI) is associated with traumatic axonal injury (TAI). Although most TAI studies focus on corpus callosum white matter, the visual system has received increased interest. To assess visual system TAI, we developed a mouse model of optic nerve TAI. It is unknown, however, whether this TAI causes retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death. To address this issue, YFP-16 transgenic mice were subjected to mild TBI and followed from 2 to 28 days. Neither TUNEL-positive or cleaved caspase-3 immunoreactive RGCs were observed from 2 to 28 days post-TBI. Quantification of immunoreactivity of Brn3a, an RGC marker, demonstrated no RGC loss; parallel electron microscopic analysis confirmed RGC viability. Persistent RGC survival was also consistent with the finding of reorganization in the proximal axonal segments following TAI wherein microglia/macrophages remained inactive. In contrast, activated microglia/macrophages closely enveloped the distal disconnected, degenerating axonal segments at 7 to 28 days post-injury, thereby confirming that this model consistently evoked TAI followed by disconnection. Collectively, these data provide novel insight into the evolving pathobiology associated with TAI that will form a foundation for future studies exploring TAI therapy and its downstream consequences. PMID:23860030

  5. Intraretinal projection of retinal ganglion cell axons as a model system for studying axon navigation

    PubMed Central

    Bao, Zheng-Zheng

    2008-01-01

    The initial step of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axon pathfinding involves directed growth of RGC axons toward the center of the retina, the optic disc, a process termed “intraretinal guidance”. Due to the accessibility of the system, and with various embryological, molecular, and genetic approaches, significant progress has been made in recent years toward understanding the mechanisms involved in the precise guidance of the RGC axons. As axons are extending from RGCs located throughout the retina, a multitude of factors expressed along with the differentiation wave are important for the guidance of the RGC axons. To ensure that the RGC axons are oriented correctly, restricted to the optic fiber layer (OFL) of the retina, and exit the eye properly, different sets of positive and negative factors cooperate in the process. Fasciculation mediated by a number of cell adhesion molecules (CAMs) and modulation of axonal response to guidance factors provide additional mechanisms to ensure proper guidance of the RGC axons. The intraretinal axon guidance thus serves as an excellent model system for studying how different signals are regulated, modulated and integrated for guiding a large number of axons in three-dimensional space. PMID:17320832

  6. Simultaneous recording of mouse retinal ganglion cells during epiretinal or subretinal stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Sim, S.L.; Szalewski, R.J.; Johnson, L.J.; Akah, L.E.; Shoemaker, L.E.; Thoreson, W.B.; Margalit, E.

    2015-01-01

    We compared response patterns and electrical receptive fields (ERF) of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) during epiretinal and subretinal electrical stimulation of isolated mouse retina. Retinas were stimulated with an array of 3200 independently controllable electrodes. Four response patterns were observed: a burst of activity immediately after stimulation (Type I cells, Vision Research (2008), 48, 1562–1568), delayed bursts beginning >25 ms after stimulation (Type II), a combination of both (Type III), and inhibition of ongoing spike activity. Type I responses were produced more often by epiretinal than subretinal stimulation whereas delayed and inhibitory responses were evoked more frequently by subretinal stimulation. Response latencies were significantly shorter with epiretinal than subretinal stimulation. These data suggest that subretinal stimulation is more effective at activating intraretinal circuits than epiretinal stimulation. There was no significant difference in charge threshold between subretinal and epiretinal configurations. ERFs were defined by the stimulating array surface area that successfully stimulated spikes in an RGC. ERFs were complex in shape, similar to receptive fields mapped with light. ERF areas were significantly smaller with subretinal than epiretinal stimulation. This may reflect the greater distance between stimulating electrodes and RGCs in the subretinal configuration. ERFs for immediate and delayed responses mapped within the same Type III cells differed in shape and size, consistent with different sites and mechanisms for generating these two response types. PMID:24863584

  7. Serum Response Factor Protects Retinal Ganglion Cells Against High-Glucose Damage.

    PubMed

    Cao, Yan; Wang, Liang; Zhao, Junhong; Zhang, Hongbing; Tian, Ying; Liang, Houcheng; Ma, Qiang

    2016-06-01

    Serum response factor (SRF), which encodes the MADS-box family of related proteins, is a common transcription factor related to the expression of genes associated with cell survival. However, SRF's role in retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) after high-glucose injury remains unclear. In this study, we investigate the protective role of SRF after high-glucose injury and its underlying mechanism. The in vitro RGC model subjected to high glucose was established by employing a 50 mmol/L glucose culture environment. As detected by real-time quantitative PCR and Western blot, SRF was significantly upregulated in RGCs treated with high glucose. Overexpression of SRF significantly promoted survival among RGCs exposed to high glucose and inhibited RGC apoptosis. Knockdown of SRF exerted an inverse effect. Moreover, SRF upregulation enhanced expression of an antioxidant protein, nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor (Nrf2), via control of the Fos-related antigen 1 (Fra-1). SRF upregulation also affected RGC survival after high-glucose treatment. Our findings showed that overexpression of SRF promoted survival of RGCs after high-glucose injury by regulating Fra-1 and Nrf2. PMID:26803311

  8. p27(Kip1) participates in the regulation of endoreplication in differentiating chick retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Ovejero-Benito, María C; Frade, José M

    2015-01-01

    Nuclear DNA duplication in the absence of cell division (i.e. endoreplication) leads to somatic polyploidy in eukaryotic cells. In contrast to some invertebrate neurons, whose nuclei may contain up to 200,000-fold the normal haploid DNA amount (C), polyploid neurons in higher vertebrates show only 4C DNA content. To explore the mechanism that prevents extra rounds of DNA synthesis in these latter cells we focused on the chick retina, where a population of tetraploid retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) has been described. We show that differentiating chick RGCs that express the neurotrophic receptors p75 and TrkB while lacking retinoblastoma protein, a feature of tetraploid RGCs, also express p27(Kip1). Two different short hairpin RNAs (shRNA) that significantly downregulate p27(Kip1) expression facilitated DNA synthesis and increased ploidy in isolated chick RGCs. Moreover, this forced DNA synthesis could not be prevented by Cdk4/6 inhibition, thus suggesting that it is triggered by a mechanism similar to endoreplication. In contrast, p27(Kip1) deficiency in mouse RGCs does not lead to increased ploidy despite previous observations have shown ectopic DNA synthesis in RGCs from p27(Kip1-/-) mice. This suggests that a differential mechanism is used for the regulation of neuronal endoreplication in mammalian versus avian RGCs. PMID:25946375

  9. Evidence that 5-HT1D receptors mediate inhibition of sympathetic ganglionic transmission in anaesthetized cats.

    PubMed Central

    Jones, J. F.; Martin, G. R.; Ramage, A. G.

    1995-01-01

    In anaesthetized cats, 5-carboxamidotryptamine (5-CT) or 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) (0.3-300 micrograms kg-1,i.v.) inhibited the postganglionic compound action potential evoked by preganglionic electrical stimulation (0.5 Hz) with a similar potency in the stellate and splanchnic ganglia. In the 5-HT experiments transmission thorough the inferior mesenteric ganglia was also recorded. The maximal inhibitory effect of 5-HT was greater on the stellate and splanchnic ganglia (60 +/- 4 and 52 +/- 5%) than on the inferior mesenteric (15 +/- 2%). The effects of 5-HT were unaffected by pretreatment with antagonists (1 mg kg-1;i.v.) for 5-HT2 (BW501C67), 5-HT1A (WAY-100635) and 5-HT3 receptors (ondansetron). However, responses to both 5-HT and 5-CT were attenuated significantly by GR127935 (1 mg kg-1) except the responses to 5-HT at the inferior mesenteric ganglia. These results are consistent with the involvement of 5-HT1D receptors mediating inhibition of sympathetic ganglionic transmission in vivo. PMID:8528548

  10. Receptive field organization of 'sustained' and 'transient' retinal ganglion cells which subserve different function roles.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, H; Wright, M J

    1972-12-01

    1. Post-stimulus histograms were obtained from ;sustained' and ;transient' retinal ganglion cells for receptive field plots using a light spot with square-wave modulation of intensity, and of variable intensity and area. Fundamental differences in their receptive field organization in time and space were revealed.2. In ;sustained' cells, excitation consists of ;transient' and ;sustained' components and the ratio of transient/sustained components remains constant at a given retinal locus for a wide range of intensities. The transient component becomes proportionally larger towards the periphery of the receptive field. This rule is also applicable for the inhibitory and disinhibitory surround. In ;transient' cells, however, there is no true ;sustained' component, but some cells produce a double peaked transient post-stimulus histogram at the R.F. centre when high flux stimuli are used, while others show a single peak transient response. The magnitude and shape of transient responses changes with intensity as well as with location in the receptive field.3. The sensitivity gradients of ;sustained' and ;transient' cells show consistent differences in shape. The mean slope of the sensitivity gradients of a sample of ;sustained' cells was 10 times that of a sample of ;transient' cells. The sensitivity gradient of ;sustained' cells shows a distinct surround region where the inhibitory mechanism is more sensitive, while that of ;transient' cells usually does not, owing to an extensive ;tail' on the sensitivity gradient of the centre mechanism, which overlaps the surround.4. Ricco's Law also holds for the centre mechanism of ;transient' cells. Non-linear summation occurs at supra-threshold levels, and when the surround mechanisms are involved.5. Supra-optimal stimuli give a saturation of the response in both ;transient and ;sustained' cells. This saturation is associated with a decrease of latency in ;transient' cells, but not in ;sustained' cells.6. The latency of retinal

  11. Co-Expression of Two Subtypes of Melatonin Receptor on Rat M1-Type Intrinsically Photosensitive Retinal Ganglion Cells

    PubMed Central

    Sheng, Wen-Long; Chen, Wei-Yi; Yang, Xiong-Li; Zhong, Yong-Mei; Weng, Shi-Jun

    2015-01-01

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) are involved in circadian and other non-image forming visual responses. An open question is whether the activity of these neurons may also be under the regulation mediated by the neurohormone melatonin. In the present work, by double-staining immunohistochemical technique, we studied the expression of MT1 and MT2, two known subtypes of mammalian melatonin receptors, in rat ipRGCs. A single subset of retinal ganglion cells labeled by the specific antibody against melanopsin exhibited the morphology typical of M1-type ipRGCs. Immunoreactivity for both MT1 and MT2 receptors was clearly seen in the cytoplasm of all labeled ipRGCs, indicating that these two receptors were co-expressed in each of these neurons. Furthermore, labeling for both the receptors were found in neonatal M1 cells as early as the day of birth. It is therefore highly plausible that retinal melatonin may directly modulate the activity of ipRGCs, thus regulating non-image forming visual functions. PMID:25714375

  12. Retinal Ganglion Cell Atrophy in Homonymous Hemianopia due to Acquired Occipital Lesions Observed Using Cirrus High-Definition-OCT

    PubMed Central

    Yamashita, Tsutomu; Miki, Atsushi; Goto, Katsutoshi; Araki, Syunsuke; Takizawa, Go; Ieki, Yoshiaki; Kiryu, Junichi; Tabuchi, Akio; Iguchi, Yasuyuki; Kimura, Kazumi; Yagita, Yoshiki

    2016-01-01

    Purpose. To report a reduction in macular ganglion cell layer and inner plexiform layer (GCL+IPL) thickness and circumpapillary retinal nerve fiber layer (cpRNFL) thickness using spectral-domain optical coherence tomography in patients with homonymous hemianopia due to posterior cerebral artery (PCA) stroke. Methods. Seven patients with PCA stroke were examined using Cirrus high-definition-OCT. The GCL+IPL thicknesses were divided into the hemianopic and unaffected sides. The relationship between the time after stroke and the GCL+IPL thicknesses in the hemianopic side was evaluated. Results. The average thicknesses of the GCL+IPL were 64.6 and 82.0 μm on the hemianopic and unaffected sides, respectively, and the measurement was significantly thinner on the former side (p = 0.018). A regression analysis revealed a negative linear relationship (R2 = 0.574, p = 0.049) between the time after stoke and the GCL+IPL thicknesses on the hemianopic side. The supratemporal and inferotemporal cpRNFL thicknesses in the eyes ipsilateral to the stroke showed a significant reduction. Conclusion. Our findings confirmed our previous observations that the degeneration of retinal ganglion cells can occur after PCA stroke. GCL+IPL thinning was demonstrated in the hemiretinae corresponding to the affected hemifields. Also, it is suggested that the retinal changes observed are progressive. PMID:27274865

  13. Retinal ganglion cell responses to voltage and current stimulation in wild-type and rd1 mouse retinas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goo, Yong Sook; Ye, Jang Hee; Lee, Seokyoung; Nam, Yoonkey; Ryu, Sang Baek; Kim, Kyung Hwan

    2011-06-01

    Retinal prostheses are being developed to restore vision for those with retinal diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa or age-related macular degeneration. Since neural prostheses depend upon electrical stimulation to control neural activity, optimal stimulation parameters for successful encoding of visual information are one of the most important requirements to enable visual perception. In this paper, we focused on retinal ganglion cell (RGC) responses to different stimulation parameters and compared threshold charge densities in wild-type and rd1 mice. For this purpose, we used in vitro retinal preparations of wild-type and rd1 mice. When the neural network was stimulated with voltage- and current-controlled pulses, RGCs from both wild-type and rd1 mice responded; however the temporal pattern of RGC response is very different. In wild-type RGCs, a single peak within 100 ms appears, while multiple peaks (approximately four peaks) with ~10 Hz rhythm within 400 ms appear in RGCs in the degenerated retina of rd1 mice. We find that an anodic phase-first biphasic voltage-controlled pulse is more efficient for stimulation than a biphasic current-controlled pulse based on lower threshold charge density. The threshold charge densities for activation of RGCs both with voltage- and current-controlled pulses are overall more elevated for the rd1 mouse than the wild-type mouse. Here, we propose the stimulus range for wild-type and rd1 retinas when the optimal modulation of a RGC response is possible.

  14. Quantitative measurement of retinal ganglion cell populations via histology-based random forest classification.

    PubMed

    Hedberg-Buenz, Adam; Christopher, Mark A; Lewis, Carly J; Fernandes, Kimberly A; Dutca, Laura M; Wang, Kai; Scheetz, Todd E; Abràmoff, Michael D; Libby, Richard T; Garvin, Mona K; Anderson, Michael G

    2016-05-01

    The inner surface of the retina contains a complex mixture of neurons, glia, and vasculature, including retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), the final output neurons of the retina and primary neurons that are damaged in several blinding diseases. The goal of the current work was two-fold: to assess the feasibility of using computer-assisted detection of nuclei and random forest classification to automate the quantification of RGCs in hematoxylin/eosin (H&E)-stained retinal whole-mounts; and if possible, to use the approach to examine how nuclear size influences disease susceptibility among RGC populations. To achieve this, data from RetFM-J, a semi-automated ImageJ-based module that detects, counts, and collects quantitative data on nuclei of H&E-stained whole-mounted retinas, were used in conjunction with a manually curated set of images to train a random forest classifier. To test performance, computer-derived outputs were compared to previously published features of several well-characterized mouse models of ophthalmic disease and their controls: normal C57BL/6J mice; Jun-sufficient and Jun-deficient mice subjected to controlled optic nerve crush (CONC); and DBA/2J mice with naturally occurring glaucoma. The result of these efforts was development of RetFM-Class, a command-line-based tool that uses data output from RetFM-J to perform random forest classification of cell type. Comparative testing revealed that manual and automated classifications by RetFM-Class correlated well, with 83.2% classification accuracy for RGCs. Automated characterization of C57BL/6J retinas predicted 54,642 RGCs per normal retina, and identified a 48.3% Jun-dependent loss of cells at 35 days post CONC and a 71.2% loss of RGCs among 16-month-old DBA/2J mice with glaucoma. Output from automated analyses was used to compare nuclear area among large numbers of RGCs from DBA/2J mice (n = 127,361). In aged DBA/2J mice with glaucoma, RetFM-Class detected a decrease in median and mean nucleus size

  15. Hydrostatic Pressure Does Not Cause Detectable Changes in Survival of Human Retinal Ganglion Cells

    PubMed Central

    Osborne, Andrew; Aldarwesh, Amal; Rhodes, Jeremy D.; Broadway, David C.; Everitt, Claire; Sanderson, Julie

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) is a major risk factor for glaucoma. One consequence of raised IOP is that ocular tissues are subjected to increased hydrostatic pressure (HP). The effect of raised HP on stress pathway signaling and retinal ganglion cell (RGC) survival in the human retina was investigated. Methods A chamber was designed to expose cells to increased HP (constant and fluctuating). Accurate pressure control (10-100mmHg) was achieved using mass flow controllers. Human organotypic retinal cultures (HORCs) from donor eyes (<24h post mortem) were cultured in serum-free DMEM/HamF12. Increased HP was compared to simulated ischemia (oxygen glucose deprivation, OGD). Cell death and apoptosis were measured by LDH and TUNEL assays, RGC marker expression by qRT-PCR (THY-1) and RGC number by immunohistochemistry (NeuN). Activated p38 and JNK were detected by Western blot. Results Exposure of HORCs to constant (60mmHg) or fluctuating (10-100mmHg; 1 cycle/min) pressure for 24 or 48h caused no loss of structural integrity, LDH release, decrease in RGC marker expression (THY-1) or loss of RGCs compared with controls. In addition, there was no increase in TUNEL-positive NeuN-labelled cells at either time-point indicating no increase in apoptosis of RGCs. OGD increased apoptosis, reduced RGC marker expression and RGC number and caused elevated LDH release at 24h. p38 and JNK phosphorylation remained unchanged in HORCs exposed to fluctuating pressure (10-100mmHg; 1 cycle/min) for 15, 30, 60 and 90min durations, whereas OGD (3h) increased activation of p38 and JNK, remaining elevated for 90min post-OGD. Conclusions Directly applied HP had no detectable impact on RGC survival and stress-signalling in HORCs. Simulated ischemia, however, activated stress pathways and caused RGC death. These results show that direct HP does not cause degeneration of RGCs in the ex vivo human retina. PMID:25635827

  16. A five-primary photostimulator suitable for studying intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cell functions in humans.

    PubMed

    Cao, Dingcai; Nicandro, Nathaniel; Barrionuevo, Pablo A

    2015-01-01

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) can respond to light directly through self-contained photopigment, melanopsin. IpRGCs also receive synaptic inputs from rods and cones. Thus, studying ipRGC functions requires a novel photostimulating method that can account for all of the photoreceptor inputs. Here, we introduced an inexpensive LED-based five-primary photostimulator that can control the excitations of rods, S-, M-, L-cones, and melanopsin-containing ipRGCs in humans at constant background photoreceptor excitation levels, a critical requirement for studying the adaptation behavior of ipRGCs with rod, cone, or melanopsin input. We described the theory and technical aspects (including optics, electronics, software, and calibration) of the five-primary photostimulator. Then we presented two preliminary studies using the photostimulator we have implemented to measure melanopsin-mediated pupil responses and temporal contrast sensitivity function (TCSF). The results showed that the S-cone input to pupil responses was antagonistic to the L-, M- or melanopsin inputs, consistent with an S-OFF and (L + M)-ON response property of primate ipRGCs (Dacey et al., 2005). In addition, the melanopsin-mediated TCSF had a distinctive pattern compared with L + M or S-cone mediated TCSF. Other than controlling individual photoreceptor excitation independently, the five-primary photostimulator has the flexibility in presenting stimuli modulating any combination of photoreceptor excitations, which allows researchers to study the mechanisms by which ipRGCs combine various photoreceptor inputs. PMID:25624466

  17. The light-activated signaling pathway in SCN-projecting rat retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Warren, Erin J.; Allen, Charles N.; Brown, R. Lane; Robinson, David W.

    2008-01-01

    In mammals, the master circadian clock resides in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) of the hypothalamus. The period and phase of the circadian pacemaker are calibrated by direct photic input from retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). SCN-projecting RGCs respond to light in the absence of rod- and cone-driven synaptic input, a property for which they are termed intrinsically photosensitive. In SCN-projecting RGCs, light activates a nonselective cationic current that displays inward and outward rectification. The goal of the present study was to investigate the identity of the light-activated ion channel and the intracellular signaling pathway leading to its activation. We considered two candidate channels, cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channels and transient receptor potential (TRP) channels, which mediate vertebrate and invertebrate phototransduction, respectively. We report that the intrinsic light response relies upon a G-protein-dependent process. Although our data indicate that cyclic nucleotides modulate the signaling pathway, CNG channels do not appear to conduct the light-activated current because (i) cyclic nucleotides in the pipette solution do not activate a conductance or completely block the light response, (ii) CNG channel blockers fail to inhibit the light response, (iii) the effects of internal and external divalent cations are inconsistent with their effects on CNG channels, and (iv) immunohistochemistry reveals no CNG channels in SCN-projecting RGCs. Finally, we show that the pharmacology of the light-activated channel resembles that of some TRPC channel family members; the response is blocked by lanthanides and ruthenium red and SK&F 96365, and is enhanced by flufenamic acid and 1-oleoyl-2-acetyl-sn-glycerol. Furthermore, immunohistochemical experiments reveal that TRPC6 is expressed in many RGCs, including those that express melanopsin. PMID:16706854

  18. Mice deficient of glutamatergic signaling from intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells exhibit abnormal circadian photoentrainment.

    PubMed

    Purrier, Nicole; Engeland, William C; Kofuji, Paulo

    2014-01-01

    Several aspects of behavior and physiology, such as sleep and wakefulness, blood pressure, body temperature, and hormone secretion exhibit daily oscillations known as circadian rhythms. These circadian rhythms are orchestrated by an intrinsic biological clock in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) of the hypothalamus which is adjusted to the daily environmental cycles of day and night by the process of photoentrainment. In mammals, the neuronal signal for photoentrainment arises from a small subset of intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) that send a direct projection to the SCN. ipRGCs also mediate other non-image-forming (NIF) visual responses such as negative masking of locomotor activity by light, and the pupillary light reflex (PLR) via co-release of neurotransmitters glutamate and pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating peptide (PACAP) from their synaptic terminals. The relative contribution of each neurotransmitter system for the circadian photoentrainment and other NIF visual responses is still unresolved. We investigated the role of glutamatergic neurotransmission for circadian photoentrainment and NIF behaviors by selective ablation of ipRGC glutamatergic synaptic transmission in mice. Mutant mice displayed delayed re-entrainment to a 6 h phase shift (advance or delay) in the light cycle and incomplete photoentrainment in a symmetrical skeleton photoperiod regimen (1 h light pulses between 11 h dark periods). Circadian rhythmicity in constant darkness also was reduced in some mutant mice. Other NIF responses such as the PLR and negative masking responses to light were also partially attenuated. Overall, these results suggest that glutamate from ipRGCs drives circadian photoentrainment and negative masking responses to light. PMID:25357191

  19. Photoresponse diversity among the five types of intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Xiwu; Stafford, Ben K; Godin, Ashley L; King, W Michael; Wong, Kwoon Y

    2014-04-01

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) mediate non-image-forming visual responses, including pupillary constriction, circadian photoentrainment and suppression of pineal melatonin secretion. Five morphological types of ipRGCs, M1-M5, have been identified in mice. In order to understand their functions better, we studied the photoresponses of all five cell types, by whole-cell recording from fluorescently labelled ipRGCs visualized using multiphoton microscopy. All ipRGC types generated melanopsin-based ('intrinsic') as well as synaptically driven ('extrinsic') light responses. The intrinsic photoresponses of M1 cells were lower threshold, higher amplitude and faster than those of M2-M5. The peak amplitudes of extrinsic light responses differed among the ipRGC types; however, the responses of all cell types had comparable thresholds, kinetics and waveforms, and all cells received rod input. While all five types exhibited inhibitory amacrine-cell and excitatory bipolar-cell inputs from the 'on' channel, M1 and M3 received additional 'off'-channel inhibition, possibly through their 'off'-sublamina dendrites. The M2-M5 ipRGCs had centre-surround-organized receptive fields, implicating a capacity to detect spatial contrast. In contrast, the receptive fields of M1 cells lacked surround antagonism, which might be caused by the surround of the inhibitory input nullifying the surround of the excitatory input. All ipRGCs responded robustly to a wide range of motion speeds, and M1-M4 cells appeared tuned to different speeds, suggesting that they might analyse the speed of motion. Retrograde labelling revealed that M1-M4 cells project to the superior colliculus, suggesting that the contrast and motion information signalled by these cells could be used by this sensorimotor area to detect novel objects and motion in the visual field. PMID:24396062

  20. Neuritin 1 promotes retinal ganglion cell survival and axonal regeneration following optic nerve crush

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, T P; Liu, Y; Wordinger, R J; Pang, I-H; Clark, A F

    2015-01-01

    Neuritin 1 (Nrn1) is an extracellular glycophosphatidylinositol-linked protein that stimulates axonal plasticity, dendritic arborization and synapse maturation in the central nervous system (CNS). The purpose of this study was to evaluate the neuroprotective and axogenic properties of Nrn1 on axotomized retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in vitro and on the in vivo optic nerve crush (ONC) mouse model. Axotomized cultured RGCs treated with recombinant hNRN1 significantly increased survival of RGCs by 21% (n=6–7, P<0.01) and neurite outgrowth in RGCs by 141% compared to controls (n=15, P<0.05). RGC transduction with AAV2-CAG–hNRN1 prior to ONC promoted RGC survival (450%, n=3–7, P<0.05) and significantly preserved RGC function by 70% until 28 days post crush (dpc) (n=6, P<0.05) compared with the control AAV2-CAG–green fluorescent protein transduction group. Significantly elevated levels of RGC marker, RNA binding protein with multiple splicing (Rbpms; 73%, n=5–8, P<0.001) and growth cone marker, growth-associated protein 43 (Gap43; 36%, n=3, P<0.01) were observed 28 dpc in the retinas of the treatment group compared with the control group. Significant increase in Gap43 (100%, n=5–6, P<0.05) expression was observed within the optic nerves of the AAV2–hNRN1 group compared to controls. In conclusion, Nrn1 exhibited neuroprotective, regenerative effects and preserved RGC function on axotomized RGCs in vitro and after axonal injury in vivo. Nrn1 is a potential therapeutic target for CNS neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25719245

  1. Photoresponse diversity among the five types of intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Xiwu; Stafford, Ben K; Godin, Ashley L; King, W Michael; Wong, Kwoon Y

    2014-01-01

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) mediate non-image-forming visual responses, including pupillary constriction, circadian photoentrainment and suppression of pineal melatonin secretion. Five morphological types of ipRGCs, M1–M5, have been identified in mice. In order to understand their functions better, we studied the photoresponses of all five cell types, by whole-cell recording from fluorescently labelled ipRGCs visualized using multiphoton microscopy. All ipRGC types generated melanopsin-based (‘intrinsic’) as well as synaptically driven (‘extrinsic’) light responses. The intrinsic photoresponses of M1 cells were lower threshold, higher amplitude and faster than those of M2–M5. The peak amplitudes of extrinsic light responses differed among the ipRGC types; however, the responses of all cell types had comparable thresholds, kinetics and waveforms, and all cells received rod input. While all five types exhibited inhibitory amacrine-cell and excitatory bipolar-cell inputs from the ‘on’ channel, M1 and M3 received additional ‘off’-channel inhibition, possibly through their ‘off’-sublamina dendrites. The M2–M5 ipRGCs had centre–surround-organized receptive fields, implicating a capacity to detect spatial contrast. In contrast, the receptive fields of M1 cells lacked surround antagonism, which might be caused by the surround of the inhibitory input nullifying the surround of the excitatory input. All ipRGCs responded robustly to a wide range of motion speeds, and M1–M4 cells appeared tuned to different speeds, suggesting that they might analyse the speed of motion. Retrograde labelling revealed that M1–M4 cells project to the superior colliculus, suggesting that the contrast and motion information signalled by these cells could be used by this sensorimotor area to detect novel objects and motion in the visual field. PMID:24396062

  2. α-Lipoic Acid Antioxidant Treatment Limits Glaucoma-Related Retinal Ganglion Cell Death and Dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Calkins, David J.; Horner, Philip J.

    2013-01-01

    Oxidative stress has been implicated in neurodegenerative diseases, including glaucoma. However, due to the lack of clinically relevant models and expense of long-term testing, few studies have modeled antioxidant therapy for prevention of neurodegeneration. We investigated the contribution of oxidative stress to the pathogenesis of glaucoma in the DBA/2J mouse model of glaucoma. Similar to other neurodegenerative diseases, we observed lipid peroxidation and upregulation of oxidative stress-related mRNA and protein in DBA/2J retina. To test the role of oxidative stress in disease progression, we chose to deliver the naturally occurring, antioxidant α-lipoic acid (ALA) to DBA/2J mice in their diet. We used two paradigms for ALA delivery: an intervention paradigm in which DBA/2J mice at 6 months of age received ALA in order to intervene in glaucoma development, and a prevention paradigm in which DBA/2J mice were raised on a diet supplemented with ALA, with the goal of preventing glaucoma development. At 10 and 12 months of age (after 4 and 11 months of dietary ALA respectively), we measured changes in genes and proteins related to oxidative stress, retinal ganglion cell (RGC) number, axon transport, and axon number and integrity. Both ALA treatment paradigms showed increased antioxidant gene and protein expression, increased protection of RGCs and improved retrograde transport compared to control. Measures of lipid peroxidation, protein nitrosylation, and DNA oxidation in retina verified decreased oxidative stress in the prevention and intervention paradigms. These data demonstrate the utility of dietary therapy for reducing oxidative stress and improving RGC survival in glaucoma. PMID:23755225

  3. A five-primary photostimulator suitable for studying intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cell functions in humans

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Dingcai; Nicandro, Nathaniel; Barrionuevo, Pablo A.

    2015-01-01

    Intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) can respond to light directly through self-contained photopigment, melanopsin. IpRGCs also receive synaptic inputs from rods and cones. Thus, studying ipRGC functions requires a novel photostimulating method that can account for all of the photoreceptor inputs. Here, we introduced an inexpensive LED-based five-primary photostimulator that can control the excitations of rods, S-, M-, L-cones, and melanopsin-containing ipRGCs in humans at constant background photoreceptor excitation levels, a critical requirement for studying the adaptation behavior of ipRGCs with rod, cone, or melanopsin input. We described the theory and technical aspects (including optics, electronics, software, and calibration) of the five-primary photostimulator. Then we presented two preliminary studies using the photostimulator we have implemented to measure melanopsin-mediated pupil responses and temporal contrast sensitivity function (TCSF). The results showed that the S-cone input to pupil responses was antagonistic to the L-, M- or melanopsin inputs, consistent with an S-OFF and (L + M)-ON response property of primate ipRGCs (Dacey et al., 2005). In addition, the melanopsin-mediated TCSF had a distinctive pattern compared with L + M or S-cone mediated TCSF. Other than controlling individual photoreceptor excitation independently, the five-primary photostimulator has the flexibility in presenting stimuli modulating any combination of photoreceptor excitations, which allows researchers to study the mechanisms by which ipRGCs combine various photoreceptor inputs. PMID:25624466

  4. Signalling mechanism for somatostatin receptor 5-mediated suppression of AMPA responses in rat retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Deng, Qin-Qin; Sheng, Wen-Long; Zhang, Gong; Weng, Shi-Jun; Yang, Xiong-Li; Zhong, Yong-Mei

    2016-08-01

    Somatostatin (SRIF) is involved in a variety of physiological functions via the activation of five subtypes of specific receptors (sst1-5). Here, we investigated the effects of SRIF on AMPA receptor (AMPAR)-mediated currents (AMPA currents) in isolated rat retinal ganglion cells (GCs) using patch-clamp techniques. Immunofluorescence double labelling demonstrated the expression of sst5 in rat GCs. Consistent to this, whole cell AMPA currents of GCs were dose-dependently suppressed by SRIF, and the effect was reversed by the sst5 antagonist BIM-23056. Intracellular dialysis of GDP-β-S or pre-incubation with the Gi/o inhibitor pertussis toxin (PTX) abolished the SRIF effect. The SRIF effect was mimicked by the administration of either 8-Br-cAMP or forskolin, but was eliminated by the protein kinase A (PKA) antagonists H-89/KT5720/Rp-cAMP. Moreover, SRIF increased intracellular Ca(2+) levels and did not suppress the AMPA currents when GCs were infused with an intracellular Ca(2+)-free solution or in the presence of ryanodine receptor modulators caffeine/ryanodine. Furthermore, the SRIF effect was eliminated when the activity of calmodulin (CaM), calcineurin and protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) was blocked with W-7, FK-506 and okadaic acid, respectively. SRIF persisted to suppress the AMPA currents when cGMP-protein kinase G (PKG) and phosphatidylinositol (PI)-/phosphatidylcholine (PC)-phospholipase C (PLC) signalling pathways were blocked. In rat flat-mount retinas, SRIF suppressed AMPAR-mediated light-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (L-EPSCs) in GCs. We conclude that a distinct Gi/o/cAMP-PKA/ryanodine/Ca(2+)/CaM/calcineurin/PP1 signalling pathway comes into play due to the activation of sst5 to mediate the SRIF effect on GCs. PMID:26969240

  5. [EFFECT OF HYPOXIA ON SYNAPTIC TRANSMISSION BETWEEN RETINAL GANGLION CELLS AND SUPERIOR COLLICULUS NEURONS IN COCULTURE].

    PubMed

    Dumanska, G V; Rikhalsky, O V; Veselovsky, N S

    2015-01-01

    In this study we conducted a series of experiments to characterize the effect and define the mechanisms of hypoxia on synaptic transmission between retinal ganglion cells and superior colliculus (SC) neurons. Application of hypoxic solution leads to a long lasting potentiation (LTP) NMDA-mediated synaptic transmission. Analysis of the oxygen deficiency effect on the spontaneous and miniature postsynaptic currents (sPSC and mPSC respectively) revealed an increase in the frequency of their occurrence and the appearance of the second peak in the mPSC histogram distribution. The assessment of quantum and binomial parameters reflects the complex pre- and postsynaptic changes during the potentiation, independent of the release probability. Most likely this LTP can be caused by an increase in the total number of active synapses. Glutamatergic synaptic transmission mediated by non-NMDA activation receptor-channel complexes, responded to application of deoxygenated solution by the brief depression, which is the result of presynaptic dysfunction and associates with decrease in release probability and number of active zones. GABAergic synaptic transmission mediated by activation GABA(A)-receptor-channel complexes, responded to hypoxic action by long term depression (LTD). Analysis of sPSC and mPSC showed a significant decrease in the frequency of their occurrence and significant (P = 0.05) decrease in the quantum over a period of oxygen deficiency. In general, the effect of hypoxia-induced LTD of GABAergic synaptic transmission is based on complex changes of presynaptic (independent on the release probability) and postsynaptic (reduction sensitivity of receptors in postsynaptic membrane) mechanisms. PMID:27025053

  6. A high frequency resonance in the responses of retinal ganglion cells to rapidly modulated stimuli: a computer model.

    PubMed

    Miller, J A; Denning, K S; George, J S; Marshak, D W; Kenyon, G T

    2006-01-01

    Brisk Y-type ganglion cells in the cat retina exhibit a high frequency resonance (HFR) in their responses to large, rapidly modulated stimuli. We used a computer model to test whether negative feedback mediated by axon-bearing amacrine cells onto ganglion cells could account for the experimentally observed properties of HFRs. Temporal modulation transfer functions (tMTFs) recorded from model ganglion cells exhibited HFR peaks whose amplitude, width, and locations were qualitatively consistent with experimental data. Moreover, the wide spatial distribution of axon-mediated feedback accounted for the observed increase in HFR amplitude with stimulus size. Model phase plots were qualitatively similar to those recorded from Y ganglion cells, including an anomalous phase advance that in our model coincided with the amplification of low-order harmonics that overlapped the HFR peak. When axon-mediated feedback in the model was directed primarily to bipolar cells, whose synaptic output was graded, or else when the model was replaced with a simple cascade of linear filters, it was possible to produce large HFR peaks but the region of anomalous phase advance was always eliminated, suggesting the critical involvement of strongly non-linear feedback loops. To investigate whether HFRs might contribute to visual processing, we simulated high frequency ocular tremor by rapidly modulating a naturalistic image. Visual signals riding on top of the imposed jitter conveyed an enhanced representation of large objects. We conclude that by amplifying responses to ocular tremor, HFRs may selectively enhance the processing of large image features. PMID:17020633

  7. The intricacies of neurotrophic factor therapy for retinal ganglion cell rescue in glaucoma: a case for gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Foldvari, Marianna; Chen, Ding Wen

    2016-01-01

    Regeneration of damaged retinal ganglion cells (RGC) and their axons is an important aspect of reversing vision loss in glaucoma patients. While current therapies can effectively lower intraocular pressure, they do not provide extrinsic support to RGCs to actively aid in their protection and regeneration. The unmet need could be addressed by neurotrophic factor gene therapy, where plasmid DNA, encoding neurotrophic factors, is delivered to retinal cells to maintain sufficient levels of neurotrophins in the retina. In this review, we aim to describe the intricacies in the design of the therapy including: the choice of neurotrophic factor, the site and route of administration and target cell populations for gene delivery. Furthermore, we also discuss the challenges currently being faced in RGC-related therapy development with special considerations to the existence of multiple RGC subtypes and the lack of efficient and representative in vitro models for rapid and reliable screening in the drug development process. PMID:27482199

  8. ON and OFF retinal ganglion cells differentially regulate serotonergic and GABAergic activity in the dorsal raphe nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ting; Huang, Lu; Zhang, Li; Tan, Minjie; Pu, Mingliang; Pickard, Gary E.; So, Kwok-Fai; Ren, Chaoran

    2016-01-01

    The dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN), the major source of serotonergic input to the forebrain, receives excitatory input from the retina that can modulate serotonin levels and depressive-like behavior. In the Mongolian gerbil, retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) with alpha-like morphological and Y-like physiological properties innervate the DRN with ON DRN-projecting RGCs out numbering OFF DRN-projecting RGCs. The DRN neurons targeted by ON and OFF RGCs are unknown. To explore retino-raphe anatomical organization, retinal afferents labeled with Cholera toxin B were examined for association with the postsynaptic protein PSD-95. Synaptic associations between retinal afferents and DRN serotonergic and GABAergic neurons were observed. To explore retino-raphe functional organization, light-evoked c-fos expression was examined. Light significantly increased the number of DRN serotonergic and GABAergic cells expressing c-Fos. When ON RGCs were rendered silent while enhancing the firing rate of OFF RGCs, c-Fos expression was greatly increased in DRN serotonergic neurons suggesting that OFF DRN-projecting RGCs predominately activate serotonergic neurons whereas ON DRN-projecting RGCs mainly target GABAergic neurons. Direct glutamatergic retinal input to DRN 5-HT neurons contributes to the complex excitatory drive regulating these cells. Light, via the retinoraphe pathway can modify DRN 5-HT neuron activity which may play a role in modulating affective behavior. PMID:27181078

  9. Selectivity of direct and network-mediated stimulation of the retinal ganglion cells with epi-, sub- and intraretinal electrodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boinagrov, David; Pangratz-Fuehrer, Susanne; Goetz, Georges; Palanker, Daniel

    2014-04-01

    Objective. Intra-retinal placement of stimulating electrodes can provide close and stable proximity to target neurons. We assessed improvement in stimulation thresholds and selectivity of the direct and network-mediated retinal stimulation with intraretinal electrodes, compared to epiretinal and subretinal placements. Approach. Stimulation thresholds of the retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in wild-type rat retina were measured using the patch-clamp technique. Direct and network-mediated responses were discriminated using various synaptic blockers. Main results. Three types of RGC responses were identified: short latency (SL, τ < 5 ms) originating in RGCs, medium latency (ML, 3 < τ < 70 ms) originating in the inner nuclear layer and long latency (LL, τ > 40 ms) originating in photoreceptors. Cathodic epiretinal stimulation exhibited the lowest threshold for direct RGC response and the highest direct selectivity (network/direct thresholds ratio), exceeding a factor of 3 with pulse durations below 0.5 ms. For network-mediated stimulation, the lowest threshold was obtained with anodic pulses in OPL position, and its network selectivity (direct/network thresholds ratio) increased with pulse duration, exceeding a factor of 4 at 10 ms. Latency of all three types of responses decreased with increasing strength of the stimulus. Significance. These results define the optimal range of pulse durations, pulse polarities and electrode placement for the retinal prostheses aiming at direct or network-mediated stimulation of RGCs.

  10. ON and OFF retinal ganglion cells differentially regulate serotonergic and GABAergic activity in the dorsal raphe nucleus.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ting; Huang, Lu; Zhang, Li; Tan, Minjie; Pu, Mingliang; Pickard, Gary E; So, Kwok-Fai; Ren, Chaoran

    2016-01-01

    The dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN), the major source of serotonergic input to the forebrain, receives excitatory input from the retina that can modulate serotonin levels and depressive-like behavior. In the Mongolian gerbil, retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) with alpha-like morphological and Y-like physiological properties innervate the DRN with ON DRN-projecting RGCs out numbering OFF DRN-projecting RGCs. The DRN neurons targeted by ON and OFF RGCs are unknown. To explore retino-raphe anatomical organization, retinal afferents labeled with Cholera toxin B were examined for association with the postsynaptic protein PSD-95. Synaptic associations between retinal afferents and DRN serotonergic and GABAergic neurons were observed. To explore retino-raphe functional organization, light-evoked c-fos expression was examined. Light significantly increased the number of DRN serotonergic and GABAergic cells expressing c-Fos. When ON RGCs were rendered silent while enhancing the firing rate of OFF RGCs, c-Fos expression was greatly increased in DRN serotonergic neurons suggesting that OFF DRN-projecting RGCs predominately activate serotonergic neurons whereas ON DRN-projecting RGCs mainly target GABAergic neurons. Direct glutamatergic retinal input to DRN 5-HT neurons contributes to the complex excitatory drive regulating these cells. Light, via the retinoraphe pathway can modify DRN 5-HT neuron activity which may play a role in modulating affective behavior. PMID:27181078

  11. Isolation and Molecular Profiling of Primary Mouse Retinal Ganglion Cells: Comparison of Phenotypes from Healthy and Glaucomatous Retinas

    PubMed Central

    Chintalapudi, Sumana R.; Djenderedjian, Levon; Stiemke, Andrew B.; Steinle, Jena J.; Jablonski, Monica M.; Morales-Tirado, Vanessa M.

    2016-01-01

    Loss of functional retinal ganglion cells (RGC) is an element of retinal degeneration that is poorly understood. This is in part due to the lack of a reliable and validated protocol for the isolation of primary RGCs. Here we optimize a feasible, reproducible, standardized flow cytometry-based protocol for the isolation and enrichment of homogeneous RGC with the Thy1.2hiCD48negCD15negCD57neg surface phenotype. A three-step validation process was performed by: (1) genomic profiling of 25-genes associated with retinal cells; (2) intracellular labeling of homogeneous sorted cells for the intracellular RGC-markers SNCG, brain-specific homeobox/POU domain protein 3A (BRN3A), TUJ1, and RNA-binding protein with multiple splicing (RBPMS); and (3) by applying the methodology on RGC from a mouse model with elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) and optic nerve damage. Use of primary RGC cultures will allow for future careful assessment of important cell specific pathways in RGC to provide mechanistic insights into the declining of visual acuity in aged populations and those suffering from retinal neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27242509

  12. Impact of Morphometry, Myelinization and Synaptic Current Strength on Spike Conduction in Human and Cat Spiral Ganglion Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Rattay, Frank; Potrusil, Thomas; Wenger, Cornelia; Wise, Andrew K.; Glueckert, Rudolf; Schrott-Fischer, Anneliese

    2013-01-01

    Background Our knowledge about the neural code in the auditory nerve is based to a large extent on experiments on cats. Several anatomical differences between auditory neurons in human and cat are expected to lead to functional differences in speed and safety of spike conduction. Methodology/Principal Findings Confocal microscopy was used to systematically evaluate peripheral and central process diameters, commonness of myelination and morphology of spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs) along the cochlea of three human and three cats. Based on these morphometric data, model analysis reveales that spike conduction in SGNs is characterized by four phases: a postsynaptic delay, constant velocity in the peripheral process, a presomatic delay and constant velocity in the central process. The majority of SGNs are type I, connecting the inner hair cells with the brainstem. In contrast to those of humans, type I neurons of the cat are entirely myelinated. Biophysical model evaluation showed delayed and weak spikes in the human soma region as a consequence of a lack of myelin. The simulated spike conduction times are in accordance with normal interwave latencies from auditory brainstem response recordings from man and cat. Simulated 400 pA postsynaptic currents from inner hair cell ribbon synapses were 15 times above threshold. They enforced quick and synchronous spiking. Both of these properties were not present in type II cells as they receive fewer and much weaker (∼26 pA) synaptic stimuli. Conclusions/Significance Wasting synaptic energy boosts spike initiation, which guarantees the rapid transmission of temporal fine structure of auditory signals. However, a lack of myelin in the soma regions of human type I neurons causes a large delay in spike conduction in comparison with cat neurons. The absent myelin, in combination with a longer peripheral process, causes quantitative differences of temporal parameters in the electrically stimulated human cochlea compared to the cat

  13. Microarray reveals complement components are regulated in the serum-deprived rat retinal ganglion cell line

    PubMed Central

    Khalyfa, Abdelnaby; Chlon, Timothy; Qiang, He; Agarwal, Neeraj

    2007-01-01

    Purpose Glaucoma is a progressive eye disease that leads to blindness due to loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). There are difficulties in using primary cultures of purified RGC to study this pathophysiology. RGC-5, a transformed not RGC line, expresses several markers characteristic of the RGCs. The aim of this study was to generate a genome-wide gene expression of RGC-5 following serum deprivation and to identify candidate genes that may be involved in the signal transduction pathways. Methods Apoptosis in the transformed rat RGC-5 was induced by serum deprivation for 0, 8, 24, 48, and 96 h. Briefly, 400 ng of RNA from each sample was reverse transcribed and labeled with Cy3 dye. Fragmented fluorescent cRNA was mixed with hybridization buffer and incubated at 60 °C for 16 h. Labeled cRNA was hybridized to Rat Genome Oligonucleotide Arrays. These arrays contain 22,775 transcripts with one oligonucleotide per transcript (60-mer). Gene expression from scanned images was quantified and analyzed using ArrayVision software. Reproducibility among triplicate arrays was determined by ANOVA statistical analysis. Significant differences in gene expression between apoptotic and nonapoptotic cells were determined based on p-values. Results Of the 22,775 transcripts present on the arrays (Agilent rat genome, 60-mer), 713 (8 h), 1,967 (24 h), 1,011 (48 h), and 1,161 (96 h) were differentially expressed relative to the 0 h time point (p-values <0.05). Twenty-three transcripts were common to 8, 24, 48, and 96 h and 130 transcripts were common to the 24, 48, and 96 h time points. The two most highly upregulated genes were Fdft1 and Lgals3 (8 h), C3 and Fcgrt (24 h), C and Lcn2 (48 h), and Mgp and C3 (96 h). A subset of the differentially expressed genes identified in microarray data (Ftl1, C3, C1s, Neu1, Polr2g, Acadm, Nupr1, Gch, Dia1, DNase1, Tgfb2, and Cyr61) were validated using quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction (QRT-PCR). Here we show that complement factor

  14. Neuroprotection by α2-Adrenergic Receptor Stimulation after Excitotoxic Retinal Injury: A Study of the Total Population of Retinal Ganglion Cells and Their Distribution in the Chicken Retina.

    PubMed

    Galindo-Romero, Caridad; Harun-Or-Rashid, Mohammad; Jiménez-López, Manuel; Vidal-Sanz, Manuel; Agudo-Barriuso, Marta; Hallböök, Finn

    2016-01-01

    We have studied the effect of α2-adrenergic receptor stimulation on the total excitotoxically injured chicken retinal ganglion cell population. N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) was intraocularly injected at embryonic day 18 and Brn3a positive retinal ganglion cells (Brn3a+ RGCs) were counted in flat-mounted retinas using automated routines. The number and distribution of the Brn3a+ RGCs were analyzed in series of normal retinas from embryonic day 8 to post-hatch day 11 retinas and in retinas 7 or 14 days post NMDA lesion. The total number of Brn3a+ RGCs in the post-hatch retina was approximately 1.9x106 with a density of approximately 9.2x103 cells/mm2. The isodensity maps of normal retina showed that the density decreased with age as the retinal size increased. In contrast to previous studies, we did not find any specific region with increased RGC density, rather the Brn3a+ RGCs were homogeneously distributed over the central retina with decreasing density in the periphery and in the region of the pecten oculli. Injection of 5-10 μg NMDA caused 30-50% loss of Brn3a+ cells and the loss was more severe in the dorsal than in the ventral retina. Pretreatment with brimonidine reduced the loss of Brn3a+ cells both 7 and 14 days post lesion and the protective effect was higher in the dorsal than in the ventral retina. We conclude that α2-adrenergic receptor stimulation reduced the impact of the excitotoxic injury in chicken similarly to what has been shown in mammals. Furthermore, the data show that the RGCs are evenly distributed over in the retina, which challenges previous results that indicate the presence of specific high RGC-density regions of the chicken retina. PMID:27611432

  15. Comparative analysis of three purification protocols for retinal ganglion cells from rat

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Fengjuan; Li, Tingting; Hu, Jianyan; Zhou, Xujiao; Wu, Jihong

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To make comparative analyses of the common three purification protocols for retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), providing a solid practical basis for selecting the method for purifying RGCs for use in subsequent experiments. Methods Rat RGCs were isolated and purified using three methods, including two-step immunopanning (TIP) separation, two-step immunopanning-magnetic (TIPM) separation, and flow cytometric (FC) separation. Immunocytochemical staining, quantitative real-time PCR, flow cytometry, electrophysiology, and Cell Counting Kit-8 (CCK-8) analyses were performed to compare the purity, yield, and viability of the RGCs. Results The RGC yields from the TIP, TIPM, and FC methods were 24.60±15.98 × 104, 5.28±4.42 × 104, and 5.4±2.7 × 103 per retina, respectively. We easily controlled the relative purity of the RGCs with the FC method and even reached 100% of the maximum expected purity. However, the RGC purity was only 80.97±5.45% and 95.41±3.23% using the TIP and TIPM methods, respectively. The contaminant cells were mainly large, star-shaped, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)-positive astrocytes and small, round, syntaxin 1-positive amacrine cells with multiple short neurites. The RGCs purified with FC could not be cultured successively in our study; however, the TIP-RGCs survived more than 20 days with good viability, while the TIPM-RGCs survived less than 9 days. Conclusions The three protocols for purifying the RGCs each had its own pros and cons. The RGCs isolated by the TIP method exhibited the highest viability and yield but had low purity. The purity of the RGCs isolated with the FC method could reach approximately 100% but had a low yield and cell viability. The TIPM method was reliable and produced RGCs with considerable purity, yield, and viability. This study provides a solid practical basis for selecting the method for purifying RGCs for use in subsequent experiments. PMID:27122968

  16. Developmental maturation of passive electrical properties in retinal ganglion cells of rainbow trout

    PubMed Central

    Picones, Arturo; Chung, S Clare; Korenbrot, Juan I

    2003-01-01

    We investigated the electrotonic and anatomical features of the dendritic arbor in developing retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). Cell anatomy was studied by filling individual cells with fluorescent, membrane-bound dyes and using computer-assisted image reconstruction. Electrotonic properties were characterized through an analysis of charging membrane currents measured with tight-seal electrodes in the whole-cell mode. We studied developing RGCs in the peripheral growth zone (PGZ) of a fish retina. The PGZ presents a developmental time-line ranging from pluripotent, proliferating cells at the extreme edge, to mature, fully developed retina more centrally. In the PGZ, RGCs mature through three histologically distinct zones (in developmental sequence): bulge, transition and mature zones. In the most peripheral three-quarters of the bulge zone, cells have rounded somas, lack dendritic extensions and some are coupled so that membrane-bound dyes traverse from one cell to its immediate neighbours. In the more central quarter of the bulge, cells' dendrites are few, short and of limited branching. In the transition zone dendritic arbors becomes progressively more expansive and branched and we present a morphometric analysis of these changes. Regardless of the size and branching pattern of the developing RGC dendritic arbor, the ratio of the diameters of parent and progeny dendrites at any branching nodes is well described by Rall's 3/2 power law. Given this anatomical feature, the RGC passive electrical properties are well described by an equivalent electrical circuit consisting of an isopotential cell body in parallel with a single equivalent cylinder of finite length. We measured the values of the electrical parameters that define this equivalent circuit in bulge, transition and mature RGCs. As RGCs develop the electrical properties of their dendritic arbor change in an orderly and tightly regulated manner, not randomly. Electrically, dendritic arbors develop along either of

  17. AMPA receptor desensitization is the determinant of AMPA receptor mediated excitotoxicity in purified retinal ganglion cells.

    PubMed

    Park, Yong H; Mueller, Brett H; McGrady, Nolan R; Ma, Hai-Ying; Yorio, Thomas

    2015-03-01

    The ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGLuR) have been hypothesized to play a role in neuronal pathogenesis by mediating excitotoxic death. Previous studies on iGluR in the retina have focused on two broad classes of receptors: NMDA and non-NMDA receptors including the α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic receptor (AMPAR) and kainate receptor. In this study, we examined the role of receptor desensitization on the specific excitotoxic effects of AMPAR activation on primary retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). Purified rat RGCs were isolated from postnatal day 4-7 Sprague-Dawley rats. Calcium imaging was used to identify the functionality of the AMPARs and selectivity of the s-AMPA agonist. Phosphorylated CREB and ERK1/2 expression were performed following s-AMPA treatment. s-AMPA excitotoxicity was determined by JC-1 mitochondrial membrane depolarization assay, caspase 3/7 luciferase activity assay, immunoblot analysis for α-fodrin, and Live (calcein AM)/Dead (ethidium homodimer-1) assay. RGC cultures of 98% purity, lacking Iba1 and GFAP expression were used for the present studies. Isolated prenatal RGCs expressed calcium permeable AMPAR and s-AMPA (100 μM) treatment of cultured RGCs significantly increased phosphorylation of CREB but not that of ERK1/2. A prolonged (6 h) AMPAR activation in purified RGCs using s-AMPA (100 μM) did not depolarize the RGC mitochondrial membrane potential. In addition, treatment of cultured RGCs with s-AMPA, both in the presence and absence of trophic factors (BDNF and CNTF), did not increase caspase 3/7 activities or the cleavage of α-fodrin (neuronal apoptosis marker), as compared to untreated controls. Lastly, a significant increase in cell survival of RGCs was observed after s-AMPA treatment as compared to control untreated RGCs. However, preventing the desensitization of AMPAR with the treatment with either kainic acid (100 μM) or the combination of s-AMPA and cyclothiazide (50 μM) significantly reduced cell

  18. Dre - Cre Sequential Recombination Provides New Tools for Retinal Ganglion Cell Labeling and Manipulation in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Melody; Liu, Pinghu; Dong, Lijin; Parmhans, Nadia; Popescu, Octavian; Badea, Tudor Constantin

    2014-01-01

    Background Genetic targeting methods have greatly advanced our understanding of many of the 20 Retinal Ganglion Cell (RGC) types conveying visual information from the eyes to the brain. However, the complexity and partial overlap of gene expression patterns in RGCs call for genetic intersectional or sparse labeling strategies. Loci carrying the Cre recombinase in conjunction with conditional knock-out, reporter or other genetic tools can be used for targeted cell type ablation and functional manipulation of specific cell populations. The three members of the Pou4f family of transcription factors, Brn3a, Brn3b and Brn3c, expressed early during RGC development and in combinatorial pattern amongst RGC types are excellent candidates for such gene manipulations. Methods and Findings We generated conditional Cre knock-in alleles at the Brn3a and Brn3b loci, Brn3aCKOCre and Brn3bCKOCre. When crossed to mice expressing the Dre recombinase, the endogenous Brn3 gene expressed by Brn3aCKOCre or Brn3bCKOCre is removed and replaced with a Cre recombinase, generating Brn3aCre and Brn3bCre knock-in alleles. Surprisingly both Brn3aCre and Brn3bCre knock-in alleles induce early ubiquitous recombination, consistent with germline expression. However in later stages of development, their expression is limited to the expected endogenous pattern of the Brn3a and Brn3b genes. We use the Brn3aCre and Brn3bCre alleles to target a Cre dependent Adeno Associated Virus (AAV) reporter to RGCs and demonstrate its use in morphological characterization, early postnatal gene delivery and tracing the expression of Brn3 genes in RGCs. Conclusions Dre recombinase effectively recombines the Brn3aCKOCre and Brn3bCKOCre alleles containing its roxP target sites. Sequential Dre to Cre recombination reveals Brn3a and Brn3b expression in early mouse development. The generated Brn3aCre and Brn3bCre alleles are useful tools that can target exogenously delivered Cre dependent reagents to RGCs in early

  19. Assessment of retinal ganglion cell damage in glaucomatous optic neuropathy: Axon transport, injury and soma loss.

    PubMed

    Nuschke, Andrea C; Farrell, Spring R; Levesque, Julie M; Chauhan, Balwantray C

    2015-12-01

    Glaucoma is a disease characterized by progressive axonal pathology and death of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), which causes structural changes in the optic nerve head and irreversible vision loss. Several experimental models of glaucomatous optic neuropathy (GON) have been developed, primarily in non-human primates and, more recently and commonly, in rodents. These models provide important research tools to study the mechanisms underlying glaucomatous damage. Moreover, experimental GON provides the ability to quantify and monitor risk factors leading to RGC loss such as the level of intraocular pressure, axonal health and the RGC population. Using these experimental models we are able to gain a better understanding of GON, which allows for the development of potential neuroprotective strategies. Here we review the advantages and disadvantages of the relevant and most often utilized methods for evaluating axonal degeneration and RGC loss in GON. Axonal pathology in GON includes functional disruption of axonal transport (AT) and structural degeneration. Horseradish peroxidase (HRP), rhodamine-B-isothiocyanate (RITC) and cholera toxin-B (CTB) fluorescent conjugates have proven to be effective reporters of AT. Also, immunohistochemistry (IHC) for endogenous AT-associated proteins is often used as an indicator of AT function. Similarly, structural degeneration of axons in GON can be investigated via changes in the activity and expression of key axonal enzymes and structural proteins. Assessment of axonal degeneration can be measured by direct quantification of axons, qualitative grading, or a combination of both methods. RGC loss is the most frequently quantified variable in studies of experimental GON. Retrograde tracers can be used to quantify RGC populations in rodents via application to the superior colliculus (SC). In addition, in situ IHC for RGC-specific proteins is a common method of RGC quantification used in many studies. Recently, transgenic mouse models

  20. Developmental maturation of passive electrical properties in retinal ganglion cells of rainbow trout.

    PubMed

    Picones, Arturo; Chung, S Clare; Korenbrot, Juan I

    2003-04-01

    We investigated the electrotonic and anatomical features of the dendritic arbor in developing retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). Cell anatomy was studied by filling individual cells with fluorescent, membrane-bound dyes and using computer-assisted image reconstruction. Electrotonic properties were characterized through an analysis of charging membrane currents measured with tight-seal electrodes in the whole-cell mode. We studied developing RGCs in the peripheral growth zone (PGZ) of a fish retina. The PGZ presents a developmental time-line ranging from pluripotent, proliferating cells at the extreme edge, to mature, fully developed retina more centrally. In the PGZ, RGCs mature through three histologically distinct zones (in developmental sequence): bulge, transition and mature zones. In the most peripheral three-quarters of the bulge zone, cells have rounded somas, lack dendritic extensions and some are coupled so that membrane-bound dyes traverse from one cell to its immediate neighbours. In the more central quarter of the bulge, cells' dendrites are few, short and of limited branching. In the transition zone dendritic arbors becomes progressively more expansive and branched and we present a morphometric analysis of these changes. Regardless of the size and branching pattern of the developing RGC dendritic arbor, the ratio of the diameters of parent and progeny dendrites at any branching nodes is well described by Rall's 3/2 power law. Given this anatomical feature, the RGC passive electrical properties are well described by an equivalent electrical circuit consisting of an isopotential cell body in parallel with a single equivalent cylinder of finite length. We measured the values of the electrical parameters that define this equivalent circuit in bulge, transition and mature RGCs. As RGCs develop the electrical properties of their dendritic arbor change in an orderly and tightly regulated manner, not randomly. Electrically, dendritic arbors develop along either of

  1. CELASTROL SUPPORTS SURVIVAL OF RETINAL GANGLION CELLS INJURED BY OPTIC NERVE CRUSH

    PubMed Central

    Kyung, Haksu; Kwong, Jacky M. K.; Bekerman, Vlad; Gu, Lei; Yadegari, Daniel; Caprioli, Joseph; Piri, Natik

    2015-01-01

    The present study evaluates the effect of celastrol on the survival of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) injured by optic nerve crush (ONC). Celastrol, a quinine methide triterpene extracted from the perennial vine Tripterygium wilfordii (Celastraceae), has been identified as a potential neuroprotective candidate in a comprehensive drug screen against various neurodegenerative diseases. Two weeks after ONC, the average density of remaining RGCs in retinas of animals treated with daily intraperitoneal (i.p.) injections of celastrol (1 mg/kg) was approximately 1332 cells/mm2, or 40.8% of that of the Celastrol/Control group. In retinas of the Vehicle/ONC group about 381 RGCs/mm2 were counted, which is 9.6% of the total number of RGCs in the DMSO/Control group. This corresponds to approximately a 250% increase in RGC survival mediated by celastrol treatment compared to control. Furthermore, the average RGC number in retinas of ONC animals treated with a single intravitreal injection of 1 mg/kg or 5 mg/kg of celastrol was increased by approximately 80% (760 RGCs/ mm2) and 78% (753 RGCs/mm2), respectively, compared to controls (422 cells/mm2). Injection of 0.2 mg/kg of celastrol had no significant effect on cell survival compared to DMSO-injected controls, with the average number of RGCs being 514 cells/mm2 in celastrol-treated animals versus 422 cells/mm2 in controls. The expression levels of Hsp70, Hsf1, Hsf2, HO-1 and TNF-alpha in the retina were analyzed to evaluate the roles of these proteins in the celastrol-mediated protection of injured RGCs. No statistically significant change in HO-1, Hsf1 and Hsp70 levels was seen in animals with ONC. An approximately 2 fold increase in Hsf2 level was observed in celastrol-treated animals with or without injury. Hsf2 level was also increased 1.8 fold in DMSO-treated animals with ONC injury compared to DMSO-treated animals with no injury suggesting that Hsf2 induction has an injury-induced component. Expression of TNF-alpha in

  2. Celastrol supports survival of retinal ganglion cells injured by optic nerve crush.

    PubMed

    Kyung, Haksu; Kwong, Jacky M K; Bekerman, Vlad; Gu, Lei; Yadegari, Daniel; Caprioli, Joseph; Piri, Natik

    2015-06-01

    The present study evaluates the effect of celastrol on the survival of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) injured by optic nerve crush (ONC). Celastrol, a quinine methide triterpene extracted from the perennial vine Tripterygium wilfordii (Celastraceae), has been identified as a potential neuroprotective candidate in a comprehensive drug screen against various neurodegenerative diseases. Two weeks after ONC, the average density of remaining RGCs in retinas of animals treated with daily intraperitoneal (i.p.) injections of celastrol (1mg/kg) was approximately 1332 cells/mm(2), or 40.8% of the Celastrol/Control group. In retinas of the Vehicle/ONC group about 381 RGCs/mm(2) were counted, which is 9.6% of the total number of RGCs in the DMSO/Control group. This corresponds to approximately a 250% increase in RGC survival mediated by celastrol treatment compared to Vehicle/ONC group. Furthermore, the average RGC number in retinas of ONC animals treated with a single intravitreal injection of 1mg/kg or 5mg/kg of celastrol was increased by approximately 80% (760 RGCs/mm(2)) and 78% (753 RGCs/mm(2)), respectively, compared to Vehicle/ONC controls (422 cells/mm(2)). Injection of 0.2mg/kg of celastrol had no significant effect on cell survival, with the average number of RGCs being 514 cells/mm(2) in celastrol-treated animals versus 422 cells/mm(2) in controls. The expression levels of Hsp70, Hsf1, Hsf2, HO-1 and TNF-alpha in the retina were analyzed to evaluate the roles of these proteins in the celastrol-mediated protection of injured RGCs. No statistically significant change in HO-1, Hsf1 and Hsp70 levels was seen in animals with ONC. An approximately 2 fold increase in Hsf2 level was observed in celastrol-treated animals with or without injury. Hsf2 level was also increased 1.8 fold in DMSO-treated animals with ONC injury compared to DMSO-treated animals with no injury suggesting that Hsf2 induction has an injury-induced component. Expression of TNF-alpha in retinas of

  3. GABAergic and glycinergic pathways to goldfish retinal ganglion cells: an ultrastructural double label study

    SciTech Connect

    Muller, J.F.

    1987-01-01

    An ultrastructural double label has been employed to compare GABAergic and glycinergic systems in the inner plexiform layer (IPL) of the goldfish retina. Electron microscope autoradiography of /sup 3/H-GABA and /sup 3/H-glycine uptake was combined with retrograde HRP-labeling of ganglion cells. When surveyed for distribution, GABAergic and glycinergic synapses were found onto labeled ganglion cells throughout the IPL. This reinforces previous physiological work that described GABAergic and glycinergic influences on a variety of ganglion cells in goldfish and carp; These physiological effects often reflect direct inputs.

  4. Differential Calcium Signaling Mediated by Voltage-Gated Calcium Channels in Rat Retinal Ganglion Cells and Their Unmyelinated Axons

    PubMed Central

    Sargoy, Allison; Sun, Xiaoping

    2014-01-01

    Aberrant calcium regulation has been implicated as a causative factor in the degeneration of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in numerous injury models of optic neuropathy. Since calcium has dual roles in maintaining homeostasis and triggering apoptotic pathways in healthy and injured cells, respectively, investigation of voltage-gated Ca channel (VGCC) regulation as a potential strategy to reduce the loss of RGCs is warranted. The accessibility and structure of the retina provide advantages for the investigation of the mechanisms of calcium signalling in both the somata of ganglion cells as well as their unmyelinated axons. The goal of the present study was to determine the distribution of VGCC subtypes in the cell bodies and axons of ganglion cells in the normal retina and to define their contribution to calcium signals in these cellular compartments. We report L-type Ca channel α1C and α1D subunit immunoreactivity in rat RGC somata and axons. The N-type Ca channel α1B subunit was in RGC somata and axons, while the P/Q-type Ca channel α1A subunit was only in the RGC somata. We patch clamped isolated ganglion cells and biophysically identified T-type Ca channels. Calcium imaging studies of RGCs in wholemounted retinas showed that selective Ca channel antagonists reduced depolarization-evoked calcium signals mediated by L-, N-, P/Q- and T-type Ca channels in the cell bodies but only by L-type Ca channels in the axons. This differential contribution of VGCC subtypes to calcium signals in RGC somata and their axons may provide insight into the development of target-specific strategies to spare the loss of RGCs and their axons following injury. PMID:24416240

  5. Activation and inhibition of retinal ganglion cells in response to epiretinal electrical stimulation: a computational modelling study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abramian, Miganoosh; Lovell, Nigel H.; Morley, John W.; Suaning, Gregg J.; Dokos, Socrates

    2015-02-01

    Objective. Retinal prosthetic devices aim to restore sight in visually impaired people by means of electrical stimulation of surviving retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). This modelling study aims to demonstrate that RGC inhibition caused by high-intensity cathodic pulses greatly influences their responses to epiretinal electrical stimulation and to investigate the impact of this inhibition on spatial activation profiles as well as their implications for retinal prosthetic device design. Another aim is to take advantage of this inhibition to reduce axonal activation in the nerve fibre layer. Approach. A three-dimensional finite-element model of epiretinal electrical stimulation was utilized to obtain RGC activation and inhibition threshold profiles for a range of parameters. Main results. RGC activation and inhibition thresholds were highly dependent on cell and stimulus parameters. Activation thresholds were 1.5, 3.4 and 11.3 μA for monopolar electrodes with 5, 20 and 50 μm radii, respectively. Inhibition to activation threshold ratios were mostly within the range 2-10. Inhibition significantly altered spatial patterns of RGC activation. With concentric electrodes and appropriately high levels of stimulus amplitudes, activation of passing axons was greatly reduced. Significance. RGC inhibition significantly impacts their spatial activation profiles, and therefore it most likely influences patterns of perceived phosphenes induced by retinal prosthetic devices. Thus this inhibition should be taken into account in future studies concerning retinal prosthesis development. It might be possible to utilize this inhibitory effect to bypass activation of passing axons and selectively stimulate RGCs near their somas and dendrites to achieve more localized phosphenes.

  6. Frequency-dependent reduction of voltage-gated sodium current modulates retinal ganglion cell response rate to electrical stimulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsai, David; Morley, John W.; Suaning, Gregg J.; Lovell, Nigel H.

    2011-10-01

    The ability to elicit visual percepts through electrical stimulation of the retina has prompted numerous investigations examining the feasibility of restoring sight to the blind with retinal implants. The therapeutic efficacy of these devices will be strongly influenced by their ability to elicit neural responses that approximate those of normal vision. Retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) can fire spikes at frequencies greater than 200 Hz when driven by light. However, several studies using isolated retinas have found a decline in RGC spiking response rate when these cells were stimulated at greater than 50 Hz. It is possible that the mechanism responsible for this decline also contributes to the frequency-dependent 'fading' of electrically evoked percepts recently reported in human patients. Using whole-cell patch clamp recordings of rabbit RGCs, we investigated the causes for the spiking response depression during direct subretinal stimulation of these cells at 50-200 Hz. The response depression was not caused by inhibition arising from the retinal network but, instead, by a stimulus-frequency-dependent decline of RGC voltage-gated sodium current. Under identical experimental conditions, however, RGCs were able to spike at high frequency when driven by light stimuli and intracellular depolarization. Based on these observations, we demonstrated a technique to prevent the spiking response depression.

  7. Two transcription factors, Pou4f2 and Isl1, are sufficient to specify the retinal ganglion cell fate

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Fuguo; Kaczynski, Tadeusz J.; Sethuramanujam, Santhosh; Li, Renzhong; Jain, Varsha; Slaughter, Malcolm; Mu, Xiuqian

    2015-01-01

    As with other retinal cell types, retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) arise from multipotent retinal progenitor cells (RPCs), and their formation is regulated by a hierarchical gene-regulatory network (GRN). Within this GRN, three transcription factors—atonal homolog 7 (Atoh7), POU domain, class 4, transcription factor 2 (Pou4f2), and insulin gene enhancer protein 1 (Isl1)—occupy key node positions at two different stages of RGC development. Atoh7 is upstream and is required for RPCs to gain competence for an RGC fate, whereas Pou4f2 and Isl1 are downstream and regulate RGC differentiation. However, the genetic and molecular basis for the specification of the RGC fate, a key step in RGC development, remains unclear. Here we report that ectopic expression of Pou4f2 and Isl1 in the Atoh7-null retina using a binary knockin-transgenic system is sufficient for the specification of the RGC fate. The RGCs thus formed are largely normal in gene expression, survive to postnatal stages, and are physiologically functional. Our results indicate that Pou4f2 and Isl1 compose a minimally sufficient regulatory core for the RGC fate. We further conclude that during development a core group of limited transcription factors, including Pou4f2 and Isl1, function downstream of Atoh7 to determine the RGC fate and initiate RGC differentiation. PMID:25775587

  8. The Topographic Organization of Retinal Ganglion Cell Density and Spatial Resolving Power in an Unusual Arboreal and Slow-Moving Strepsirhine Primate, the Potto (Perodicticus potto).

    PubMed

    Coimbra, João Paulo; Kaswera-Kyamakya, Consolate; Gilissen, Emmanuel; Manger, Paul R; Collin, Shaun P

    2016-01-01

    The potto (Perodicticus potto) is an arboreal strepsirhine found in the rainforests of central Africa. In contrast to most primates, the potto shows slow-moving locomotion over the upper surface of branches, where it forages for exudates and crawling invertebrates with its head held very close to the substrate. Here, we asked whether the retina of the potto displays topographic specializations in neuronal density that correlate with its unusual lifestyle. Using stereology and retinal wholemounts, we measured the total number and topographic distribution of retinal ganglion cells (total and presumed parasol), as well as estimating the upper limits of the spatial resolution of the potto eye. We estimated ∼210,000 retinal ganglion cells, of which ∼7% (∼14,000) comprise presumed parasol ganglion cells. The topographic distribution of both total and parasol ganglion cells reveals a concentric centroperipheral organization with a nasoventral asymmetry. Combined with the upwardly shifted orbits of the potto, this nasoventral increase in parasol ganglion cell density enhances contrast sensitivity and motion detection skywards, which potentially assists with the detection of predators in the high canopy. The central area of the potto occurs ∼2.5 mm temporal to the optic disc and contains a maximum ganglion cell density of ∼4,300 cells/mm2. We found no anatomical evidence of a fovea within this region. Using maximum ganglion cell density and eye size (∼14 mm), we estimated upper limits of spatial resolving power between 4.1 and 4.4 cycles/degree. Despite their reported reliance on olfaction to detect exudates, this level of spatial resolution potentially assists pottos with foraging for small invertebrates and in the detection of predators. PMID:26820506

  9. Retinofugal Projections from Melanopsin-Expressing Retinal Ganglion Cells Revealed by Intraocular Injections of Cre-Dependent Virus

    PubMed Central

    Delwig, Anton; Larsen, DeLaine D.; Yasumura, Douglas; Yang, Cindy F.; Shah, Nirao M.; Copenhagen, David R.

    2016-01-01

    To understand visual functions mediated by intrinsically photosensitive melanopsin-expressing retinal ganglion cells (mRGCs), it is important to elucidate axonal projections from these cells into the brain. Initial studies reported that melanopsin is expressed only in retinal ganglion cells within the eye. However, recent studies in Opn4-Cre mice revealed Cre-mediated marker expression in multiple brain areas. These discoveries complicate the use of melanopsin-driven genetic labeling techniques to identify retinofugal projections specifically from mRGCs. To restrict labeling to mRGCs, we developed a recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) carrying a Cre-dependent reporter (human placental alkaline phosphatase) that was injected into the vitreous of Opn4-Cre mouse eyes. The labeling observed in the brain of these mice was necessarily restricted specifically to retinofugal projections from mRGCs in the injected eye. We found that mRGCs innervate multiple nuclei in the basal forebrain, hypothalamus, amygdala, thalamus and midbrain. Midline structures tended to be bilaterally innervated, whereas the lateral structures received mostly contralateral innervation. As validation of our approach, we found projection patterns largely corresponded with previously published results; however, we have also identified a few novel targets. Our discovery of projections to the central amygdala suggests a possible direct neural pathway for aversive responses to light in neonates. In addition, projections to the accessory optic system suggest that mRGCs play a direct role in visual tracking, responses that were previously attributed to other classes of retinal ganglion cells. Moreover, projections to the zona incerta raise the possibility that mRGCs could regulate visceral and sensory functions. However, additional studies are needed to investigate the actual photosensitivity of mRGCs that project to the different brain areas. Also, there is a concern of "overlabeling" with very

  10. Vaccination for protection of retinal ganglion cells against death from glutamate cytotoxicity and ocular hypertension: Implications for glaucoma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schori, Hadas; Kipnis, Jonathan; Yoles, Eti; Woldemussie, Elizabeth; Ruiz, Guadalupe; Wheeler, Larry A.; Schwartz, Michal

    2001-03-01

    Our group recently demonstrated that autoimmune T cells directed against central nervous system-associated myelin antigens protect neurons from secondary degeneration. We further showed that the synthetic peptide copolymer 1 (Cop-1), known to suppress experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, can be safely substituted for the natural myelin antigen in both passive and active immunization for neuroprotection of the injured optic nerve. Here we attempted to determine whether similar immunizations are protective from retinal ganglion cell loss resulting from a direct biochemical insult caused, for example, by glutamate (a major mediator of degeneration in acute and chronic optic nerve insults) and in a rat model of ocular hypertension. Passive immunization with T cells reactive to myelin basic protein or active immunization with myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein-derived peptide, although neuroprotective after optic nerve injury, was ineffective against glutamate toxicity in mice and rats. In contrast, the number of surviving retinal ganglion cells per square millimeter in glutamate-injected retinas was significantly larger in mice immunized 10 days previously with Cop-1 emulsified in complete Freund's adjuvant than in mice injected with PBS in the same adjuvant (2,133 ± 270 and 1,329 ± 121, respectively, mean ± SEM; P < 0.02). A similar pattern was observed when mice were immunized on the day of glutamate injection (1,777 ± 101 compared with 1,414 ± 36; P <0.05), but not when they were immunized 48h later. These findings suggest that protection from glutamate toxicity requires reinforcement of the immune system by antigens that are different from those associated with myelin. The use of Cop-1 apparently circumvents this antigen specificity barrier. In the rat ocular hypertension model, which simulates glaucoma, immunization with Cop-1 significantly reduced the retinal ganglion cell loss from 27.8%±6.8% to 4.3%±1.6%, without affecting the intraocular pressure