Genome-wide transcriptional analysis of differentially expressed genes in diabetic, healing corneal epithelial cells: hyperglycemia-suppressed TGF?3 expression contributes to the delay of epithelial wound healing in diabetic corneas.
ABSTRACT: Patients with diabetes mellitus (DM) may develop corneal complications and delayed wound healing. The aims of this study are to characterize the molecular signatures and biological pathways leading to delayed epithelial wound healing and to delineate the involvement of TGF?3 therein. Genome-wide cDNA microarray analysis revealed 1,888 differentially expressed genes in the healing epithelia of normal (NL) versus type 1 DM rat corneas. Gene ontology and enrichment analyses indicated TGF? signaling as a major altered pathway. Among three TGF? isoforms, TGF-?1 and ?3 were upregulated in response to wounding in NL corneal epithelial cells (CECs), whereas the latter was greatly suppressed by hyperglycemia in rat type 1 and 2 and mouse type 1 DM models. Functional analysis indicated that TGF-?3 contributed to wound healing in NL corneas. Moreover, exogenously added TGF-?3 accelerated epithelial wound closure in type 2 rat and type 1 mouse DM corneas via Smad and PI3K-AKT signaling pathways, autoregulation, and/or upregulation of Serpine1, a well-known TGF? target gene. Taken together, our study for the first time provides a comprehensive list of genes differentially expressed in the healing CECs of NL versus diabetic corneas and suggests the therapeutic potential of TGF-?3 for treating corneal and skin wounds in diabetic patients.
Project description:Descemet's membrane (DM) helps maintain phenotype and function of corneal endothelial cells under physiological conditions, while little is known about the function of DM in corneal endothelial wound healing process. In the current study, we performed in vivo rabbit corneal endothelial cell (CEC) injury via CEC scraping, in which DM remained intact after CECs removal, or via DM stripping, in which DM was removed together with CECs. We found rabbit corneas in the CEC scraping group healed with transparency restoration, while there was posterior fibrosis tissue formation in the corneas after DM stripping on day 14. Following CEC scraping on day 3, cells that had migrated toward the central cornea underwent a transient fibrotic endothelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) which was reversed back to an endothelial phenotype on day 14. However, in the corneas injured via DM stripping, most of the cells in the posterior fibrosis tissue did not originate from the corneal endothelium, and they maintained fibroblastic phenotype on day 14. We concluded that corneal endothelial wound healing in rabbits has different outcomes depending upon the presence or absence of Descemet's membrane. Descemet's membrane supports corneal endothelial cell regeneration in rabbits after endothelial injury.
Project description:Purpose:Corneal injury that occurs after burning with alkali initiates wound-healing processes, including inflammation, neovascularization, and fibrosis. Excessive reactions to injury can reduce corneal transparency and thereby compromise vision. The NADPH oxidase (Nox) enzyme complex is known to be involved in cell signaling for wound-healing angiogenesis, but its role in corneal neovascularization has been little studied. Methods:The center corneas of wild-type and Nox4 knockout (KO) mice were injured with 3 µL 1 M NaOH, while the contralateral corneas remained untouched. On day 7, mRNA expression levels of NADPH oxidase isoforms, the proangiogenic factors VEGF-A and TGF?1, and proinflammatory genes ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 were determined. Corneal neovascularization and fibrosis were visualized using PECAM-1 antibody and picrosirius red staining, respectively, on the same day. Results:Expressions of both Nox2 and Nox4 gene isoforms as well as the above genes were markedly increased in the injured corneas at 7 days. Injured corneas showed neovascularization and fibrosis as well as an increase in clinical opacity score. All responses stimulated by alkali burn were abrogated in Nox4 KO mice. Conclusions:Nox4 could be a new target to treat pathologic corneal wound-healing responses and such targeting might prevent blindness caused by burn injuries.
Project description:Proper wound healing is vital for maintenance of corneal integrity and transparency. Corneal epithelial damage is one of the most frequently observed ocular disorders. Because clinical options are limited, further novel treatments are needed to improve clinical outcomes for this type of disease. In the present study, it was found that placental extract-derived dipeptide (JBP485) significantly increased the proliferation and migration of corneal epithelial cells (CECs). Moreover, JBP485 accelerated corneal epithelial wound healing in vivo without inflammation and neovascularization and was found to be effective for the treatment of corneal damage. These data indicate that JBP485 efficiently activates the viability of CECs and has potential as a novel treatment for various kinds of corneal epithelial disease.
Project description:<h4>Background and purpose</h4>The connexin 43 (Cx43) mimetic peptide Gap27 was designed to transiently block the function of this gap junction. This study was undertaken to investigate the effect of Gap27 on corneal healing, inflammation and neovascularization.<h4>Experimental approach</h4>The effect of Gap27 on wound healing, inflammation and vascularization was assessed in primary human corneal epithelial cells (HCEC) in vitro and whole human corneas ex vivo, and in an in vivo rat wound healing model.<h4>Key results</h4>Gap27 enhanced the wound closure of HCEC in vitro and accelerated wound closure and stratification of epithelium in human corneas ex vivo, but did not suppress the corneal release of inflammatory mediators IL-6 or TNF-? in vivo. In human corneas ex vivo, F4/80 positive macrophages were observed around the wound site. In vivo, topical Gap27 treatment enhanced the speed and density of early granulocyte infiltration into rat corneas. After 7 days, the expressions of TNF-? and TGF?1 were elevated and correlated with inflammatory cell accumulation in the tissue. Additionally, Gap27 did not suppress VEGF release in organotypic culture, nor did it suppress early or late VEGFA expression or neovascularization in vivo.<h4>Conclusions and implications</h4>Gap27 can be effective in promoting the healing of superficial epithelial wounds, but in deep stromal wounds it has the potential to promote inflammatory cell migration and accumulation in the tissue and does not suppress the subsequent neovascularization response. These results support the proposal that Gap27 acts as a healing agent in the transient, early stages of corneal epithelial wounding.
Project description:Donor corneas with low endothelial cell densities (ECD) are deemed unsuitable for corneal endothelial transplantation. This study evaluated a two-step incubation and dissociation harvesting approach to isolate single corneal endothelial cells (CECs) from donor corneas for corneal endothelial cell-injection (CE-CI) therapy. To isolate CECs directly from donor corneas, optimization studies were performed where donor Descemet's membrane/corneal endothelium (DM/CE) were peeled and incubated in either M4-F99 or M5-Endo media before enzymatic digestion. Morphometric analyses were performed on the isolated single cells. The functional capacities of these cells, isolated using the optimized simple non-cultured endothelial cells (SNEC) harvesting technique, for CE-CI therapy were investigated using a rabbit bullous keratopathy model. The two control groups were the positive controls, where rabbits received cultured CECs, and the negative controls, where rabbits received no CECs. Whilst it took longer for CECs to dislodge as single cells following donor DM/CE incubation in M5-Endo medium, CECs harvested were morphologically more homogenous and smaller compared to CECs obtained from DM/CE incubated in M4-F99 medium (p < 0.05). M5-Endo medium was hence selected as the DM/CE incubation medium prior to enzymatic digestion to harvest CECs for the in vivo cell-injection studies. Following SNEC injection, mean central corneal thickness (CCT) of rabbits increased to 802.9 ± 147.8 ?m on day 1, gradually thinned, and remained clear with a CCT of 385.5 ± 38.6 ?m at week 3. Recovery of corneas was comparable to rabbits receiving cultured CE-CI (p = 0.40, p = 0.17, and p = 0.08 at weeks 1, 2, and 3, respectively). Corneas that did not receive any cells remained significantly thicker compared to both SNEC injection and cultured CE-CI groups (p < 0.05). This study concluded that direct harvesting of single CECs from donor corneas for SNEC injection allows the utilization of donor corneas unsuitable for conventional endothelial transplantation.
Project description:To maintain corneal transparency, corneal endothelial cells (CECs) exert a pump function against aqueous inflow. However, human CECs are arrested in the G1-phase and non-proliferative in vivo. Thus, treatment of corneal endothelial decompensation is limited to corneal transplantation, and grafts are vulnerable to immune rejection. Here, we show that ribonuclease (RNase) 5 is more highly expressed in normal human CECs compared to decompensated tissues. Furthermore, RNase 5 up-regulated survival of CECs and accelerated corneal endothelial wound healing in an in vitro wound of human CECs and an in vivo cryo-damaged rabbit model. RNase 5 treatment rapidly induced accumulation of cytoplasmic RNase 5 into the nucleus, and activated PI3-kinase/Akt pathway in human CECs. Moreover, inhibition of nuclear translocation of RNase 5 using neomycin reversed RNase 5-induced Akt activation. As a potential strategy for proliferation enhancement, RNase 5 increased the population of 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine (BrdU)-incorporated proliferating CECs with concomitant PI3-kinase/Akt activation, especially in CECs deprived of contact-inhibition. Specifically, RNase 5 suppressed p27 and up-regulated cyclin D1, D3, and E by activating PI3-kinase/Akt in CECs to initiate cell cycle progression. Together, our data indicate that RNase 5 facilitates corneal endothelial wound healing, and identify RNase 5 as a novel target for therapeutic exploitation.
Project description:Transforming growth factor-?-induced protein (TGFBIp) is highly expressed in the cornea, and mutant TGFBIp induces corneal diseases. However, the function of TGFBIp in cornea epithelium is not fully investigated. Here, we tested the importance of TGFBIp in regulation of gene expression and corneal epithelial cell (CEC) activity.The effect of TGFBIp on CEC activity was analyzed by cell migration, adhesion, proliferation and wound healing assay. Analysis of gene expression was examined by western blot and quantitative reverse transcription PCR.The results demonstrated that TGFBIp increased adhesion, migration, proliferation, and wound healing of CECs. Analysis of gene expression presented that TGFBIp-stimulated CECs exhibited increased expression of mucin family genes, such as MUC1, -4, -5AC, and -16. Furthermore, TGFBIp treatment increased the expression of MUC1, -4, -5AC, -7, and -16 in conjunctival epithelial cells. TGFBIp also increased the activity of intracellular signaling molecules ERK and AKT in CECs. Using pharmacologic inhibitors of ERK and AKT, we showed that the expression of mucin genes by TGFBIp is mediated by the activation of ERK and AKT signaling.Our findings demonstrate that the locally generated TGFBIp in the cornea may contribute to wound healing of CECs by enhancing the migration, adhesion, and proliferation of CECs. In addition, our results suggest that TGFBIp has a protective effect on ocular surfaces by inducing the expression of mucin genes in corneal and conjunctival epithelial cells. These data suggest that TGFBIp is a useful therapeutic target for patients with corneal wounds.
Project description:It is generally accepted that the glycans on the cell surface and extracellular matrix proteins play a pivotal role in the events that mediate re-epithelialization of wounds. Yet, the global alteration in the structure and composition of glycans, specifically occurring during corneal wound closure remains unknown. In this study, GLYCOv2 glycogene microarray technology was used for the first time to identify the differentially expressed glycosylation-related genes in healing mouse corneas. Of approximately 2000 glycogenes on the array, the expression of 11 glycosytransferase and glycosidase enzymes was upregulated and that of 19 was downregulated more than 1.5-fold in healing corneas compared with the normal, uninjured corneas. Among them, notably, glycosyltransferases, beta3GalT5, T-synthase, and GnTIVb, were all found to be induced in the corneas in response to injury, whereas, GnTIII and many sialyltransferases were downregulated. Interestingly, it appears that the glycan structures on glycoproteins and glycolipids, expressed in healing corneas as a result of differential regulation of these glycosyltransferases, may serve as specific counter-receptors for galectin-3, a carbohydrate-binding protein, known to play a key role in re-epithelialization of corneal wounds. Additionally, many glycogenes including a proteoglycan, glypican-3, cell adhesion proteins dectin-1 and -2, and mincle, and mucin 1 were identified for the first time to be differentially regulated during corneal wound healing. Results of glycogene microarray data were confirmed by qRT-PCR and lectin blot analyses. The differentially expressed glycogenes identified in the present study have not previously been investigated in the context of wound healing and represent novel factors for investigating the role of carbohydrate-mediated recognition in corneal wound healing.
Project description:Purpose:To investigate the role of phosphatase and tensin homologue deleted on chromosome 10 (PTEN) in the regulation of corneal endothelial cell (CECs) focusing on proliferation and migration, and to further evaluate the application of PTEN inhibitors in the treatment of corneal endothelial dysfunction in a rat model. Methods:Expression of PTEN in human and rat corneal endothelium was determined by immunocytochemistry, western blotting, and ELISA. A small molecular inhibitor of PTEN, bpV(pic), was applied in the culture of human CEC cell line B4G12 and organ-cultured rat cornea in the presence of transforming growth factor beta 2 (TGF-?2). Cell cycle status was detected by flow cytometry and BrdU staining. Subcellular localization for endogenous p27Kip1 was detected by immunocytochemistry and western blotting. Moreover, exogenous transfected YFP-p27Kip1 was observed under a fluorescent microscope. Cell migration was examined with a wound scratch model and transwell invasion assay. Finally, bpV(pic) was intracamerally injected in a rat corneal endothelial injury model. The wound healing process was evaluated by slit lamp biomicroscopy, optical coherence tomography, histological and scanning electron microscope examination. Results:The expression of PTEN in human corneal endothelium was higher compared with rat, which we speculate was mostly responsible for the relatively less proliferation capacity of human CEC than rat. PTEN inhibition by bpV(pic) could reverse TGF-?2-induced CEC G1-arrest by alleviating p27Kip1 nuclear accumulation and decreasing total p27Kip1 expression. In addition, bpV(pic) promoted CEC migration, which acted synergistically with TGF-?2. Finally, intracameral injection of bpV(pic) could promote corneal endothelial wound healing in a rat model. Conclusions:Our study provided experimental basis for the development of therapeutic agent targeting on PTEN for the treatment of corneal endothelial dysfunction.
Project description:CB2R receptors have demonstrated beneficial effects in wound healing in several models. We therefore investigated a potential role of CB2R receptors in corneal wound healing. We examined the functional contribution of CB2R receptors to the course of wound closure in an in vivo murine model. We additionally examined corneal expression of CB2R receptors in mouse and the consequences of their activation on cellular signaling, migration and proliferation in cultured bovine corneal epithelial cells (CECs). Using a novel mouse model, we provide evidence that corneal injury increases CB2R receptor expression in cornea. The CB2R agonist JWH133 induces chemorepulsion in cultured bovine CECs but does not alter CEC proliferation. The signaling profile of CB2R activation is activating MAPK and increasing cAMP accumulation, the latter perhaps due to Gs-coupling. Lipidomic analysis in bovine cornea shows a rise in acylethanolamines including the endocannabinoid anandamide 1?h after injury. In vivo, CB2R deletion and pharmacological block result in a delayed course of wound closure. In summary, we find evidence that CB2R receptor promoter activity is increased by corneal injury and that these receptors are required for the normal course of wound closure, possibly via chemorepulsion.