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Authors: Gramlich, Oliver W.
Teister, Julia
Neumann, Mareike
Tao, Xue
Beck, Sabine
Pein, Harald von
Pfeiffer, Norbert
Grus, Franz-Hermann
Title: Immune response after intermittent minimally invasive intraocular pressure elevations in an experimental animal model of glaucoma
Online publication date: 15-Jul-2022
Year of first publication: 2016
Language: english
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Elevated intraocular pressure (IOP), as well as fluctuations in IOP, is a main risk factor for glaucoma, but its pathogenic effect has not yet been clarified. Beyond the multifactorial pathology of the disease, autoimmune mechanisms seem to be linked to retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death. This study aimed to identify if intermittent IOP elevations in vivo (i) elicit neurodegeneration, (ii) provokes an immune response and (iii) whether progression of RGC loss can be attenuated by the B lymphocyte inhibitor Belimumab. METHODS: Using an intermittent ocular hypertension model (iOHT), Long Evans rats (n = 21) underwent 27 unilateral simulations of a fluctuating pressure profile. Nine of these animals received Belimumab, and additional seven rats served as normotensive controls. Axonal density was analyzed in PPD-stained optic nerve cross-sections. Retinal cross-sections were immunostained against Brn3a, Iba1, and IgG autoantibody depositions. Serum IgG concentration and IgG reactivities were determined using ELISA and protein microarrays. Data was analyzed using ANOVA and Tukey HSD test (unequal N) or student’s independent t test by groups. RESULTS: A wavelike IOP profile led to a significant neurodegeneration of optic nerve axons (−10.6 %, p < 0.001) and RGC (−19.5 %, p = 0.02) in iOHT eyes compared with fellow eyes. Belimumab-treated animals only showed slightly higher axonal survival and reduced serum IgG concentration (−29 %) after iOHT. Neuroinflammatory events, indicated by significantly upregulated microglia activation and IgG autoantibody depositions, were shown in all injured retinas. Significantly elevated serum autoantibody immunoreactivities against glutathione-S-transferase, spectrin, and transferrin were observed after iOHT and were negatively correlated to the axon density. CONCLUSIONS: Intermittent IOP elevations are sufficient to provoke neurodegeneration in the optic nerve and the retina and elicit changes of IgG autoantibody reactivities. Although the inhibition of B lymphocyte activation failed to ameliorate axonal survival, the correlation between damage and changes in the autoantibody reactivity suggests that autoantibody profiling could be useful as a biomarker for glaucoma.
DDC: 610 Medizin
610 Medical sciences
Institution: Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
Department: FB 04 Medizin
Place: Mainz
Version: Published version
Publication type: Zeitschriftenaufsatz
License: CC BY
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Journal: Journal of neuroinflammation
Pages or article number: Art. 82
Publisher: BioMed Central
Publisher place: London
Issue date: 2016
ISSN: 1742-2094
Publisher URL:
Publisher DOI: 10.1186/s12974-016-0542-6
Appears in collections:DFG-OA-Publizieren (2012 - 2017)

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