An acute retinal model for evaluating blood retinal barrier breach and potential drugs for treatment

Hao Wu, Ana R. Rodriguez, Bernd W. Spur, Venkat Venkataraman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


A low-cost, easy-to-use and powerful model system is established to evaluate potential treatments that could ameliorate blood retinal barrier breach. An inflammatory factor, histamine, is demonstrated to compromise vessel integrity in the cultured retina through positive staining of IgG outside of the blood vessels. The effects of histamine itself and those of candidate drugs for potential treatments, such as lipoxin A4, are assessed using three parameters: blood vessel leakage via IgG immunostaining, activation of Müller cells via GFAP staining and change in neuronal dendrites through staining for MAP2. Furthermore, the layered organization of the retina allows a detailed analysis of the processes of Müller and ganglion cells, such as changes in width and continuity. While the data presented is with swine retinal culture, the system is applicable to multiple species. Thus, the model provides a reliable tool to investigate the early effects of compromised retinal vessel integrity on different cell types and also to evaluate potential drug candidates for treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere54619
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number115
StatePublished - Sep 13 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Neuroscience
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology


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