Reduced Annexin A1 Secretion by ABCA1 Causes Retinal Inflammation and Ganglion Cell Apoptosis in a Murine Glaucoma Model.
ABSTRACT: Variants near the ATP-binding cassette transporter A1 (ABCA1) gene are associated with elevated intraocular pressure and newly discovered risk factors for glaucoma. Previous studies have shown an association between ABCA1 deficiency and retinal inflammation. Using a mouse model of ischemia-reperfusion (IR) induced by acute intraocular pressure elevation, we found that the retinal expression of ABCA1 protein was decreased. An induction of ABCA1 expression by liver X receptor agonist TO901317 reduced retinal ganglion cell (RGC) apoptosis after IR and promoted membrane translocation and secretion of the anti-inflammatory factor annexin A1 (ANXA1). Moreover, ABCA1 and ANXA1 co-localized in cell membranes, and the interaction domain is amino acid 196 to 274 of ANXA1 fragment. TO901317 also reduced microglia migration and activation and decreased the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines interleukin (IL)-17A and IL-1?, which could be reversed by the ANXA1 receptor blocker Boc2. Overexpression of TANK-binding kinase 1 (TBK1) increased ABCA1 degradation, which was reversed by the proteasome inhibitor carbobenzoxy-L-leucyl-L-leucyl-L-leucinal (MG132). Silencing Tbk1 with siRNA increased ABCA1 expression and promoted ANXA1 membrane translocation. These results indicate a novel IR mechanism, that leads via TBK1 activation to ABCA1 ubiquitination. This degradation decreases ANXA1 secretion, thus facilitating retinal inflammation and RGC apoptosis. Our findings suggest a potential treatment strategy to prevent RGC apoptosis in retinal ischemia and glaucoma.
Project description:The anti-inflammatory molecule annexin A1 (ANXA1) determines the ultimate fate of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) in glaucoma. Cytoplasmic and extracellular ANXA1 facilitate resolution of inflammation. However, the nuclear translocation of ANXA1 induces RGC apoptosis in a murine glaucoma model, and the maintenance of ANXA1 secreted in the extracellular environments remains unclear. In this study, we found that intravitreal injection of the recombinant adenovirus vector (Ad)-ATP-binding cassette transporter A1 (<i>ABCA1</i>; carrying full-length <i>ABCA1</i>) improved RGC survival in the ischemia reperfusion (IR) mice model. Upregulation of ABCA1 maintained ANXA1 cytoplasmic location and reduced ANXA1 nuclear translocation, which is due to the decreased binding of ANXA1 with importin ?. Moreover, we found that amino acids 903 to 1,344 of ABCA1 interacted with ANXA1 and decreased its nuclear localization. Importantly, intravitreal injection of adenovirus-associated viral (AAV) vector AAV8-<i>ABCA1</i> (carrying 903 to 1,344 fragments of ABCA1) maintained ANXA1 cytoplasmic location and improved RGC survival in the IR mice model. Thus, overexpression of <i>ABCA1</i> protects against RGC apoptosis by partially blocking ANXA1 nuclear translocation. This study puts forth a potential gene treatment strategy to prevent RGC apoptosis in glaucoma.
Project description:Glaucoma is a leading cause of irreversible blindness worldwide that is characterized by progressive retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death. However, RGC senescence as a phase before RGC death, and the mechanism of RGC senescence remains unclear. Here, we demonstrate that TANK-binding protein 1 (TBK1) is upregulated in acute IOP elevation-induced ischemic retinas mouse model. Moreover, pre-treatment with the TBK1 inhibitor BX-795 reduced p16INK4a (p16) expression and RGC senescence. Upregulation of TBK1 via plasmid transfection increased Akt phosphorylation at Ser473 and Bmi1 phosphorylation. The Akt inhibitor MK-2206 decreased the expression of p16 and Bmi1 serine phosphorylation. A Bmi1 Ser316 mutation also attenuated TBK1-induced p16 upregulation. Finally, silencing of TBK1 via shRNA knockdown reduced the expression of p16 as well as Akt and Bmi1 phosphorylation, reducing RGC senescence in vivo. These data suggest that acute IOP elevation-induced ischemia increases TBK1 expression, which then increases p16 expression through the Akt- Bmi1 phosphorylation pathway. This study therefore elucidates a novel mechanism whereby TBK1 regulates p16 expression and RGC senescence, suggesting a potential novel treatment strategy for minimizing RGC senescence in retinal ischemia and glaucoma.
Project description:Duplication of the TBK1 gene is associated with 1-2% of normal tension glaucoma, a common cause of vision loss and blindness that occurs without grossly abnormal intraocular pressure. We generated a transgenic mouse that has one copy of the human TBK1 gene (native promoter and gene structure) incorporated into the mouse genome (Tg-TBK1). Expression of the TBK1 transgene in the retinae of these mice was demonstrated by real-time PCR. Using immunohistochemistry TBK1 protein was predominantly localized to the ganglion cell layer of the retina, the cell type most affected by glaucoma. More intense TBK1 labelling was detected in the retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) of Tg-TBK1 mice than in wild-type littermates. Tg-TBK1 mice exhibit the cardinal sign of glaucoma, a progressive loss of RGCs. Hemizygous Tg-TBK1 mice (with one TBK1 transgene per genome) had a 13% loss of RGCs by 18 months of age (P?=?1.5 × 10-8). Homozygous Tg-TBK1 mice had 7.6% fewer RGCs than hemizygous Tg-TBK1 mice and 20% fewer RGCs than wild-type mice (P?=?1.9 × 10-5) at 6 months of age. No difference in intraocular pressures was detected between Tg-TBK1 mice and wild-type littermates as they aged (P?>?0.05). Tg-TBK1 mice with extra doses of the TBK1 gene recapitulate the phenotype of normal tension glaucoma in human patients with a TBK1 gene duplication. Together, these studies confirm the pathogenicity of the TBK1 gene duplication in human glaucoma and suggest that excess production of TBK1 kinase may have a role in the pathology of glaucoma.
Project description:Glaucoma is a complex neurodegenerative disease with many clinical subtypes. Some of its rare forms include pigmentary glaucoma, uveitic glaucoma and congenital glaucoma. While they all share common features of progressive retinal ganglion cell (RGC) loss, optic nerve damage and corresponding visual field loss, the exact mechanisms underlying glaucomatous neuron loss are not clear. This has largely hindered the development of a real cure for this disease. Elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) is a known major risk factor of glaucoma; however, progressive degeneration of RGCs and axons can also be found in patients with a normal IOP, i.e., normal tension glaucoma (NTG). Interestingly, patients who carry the gain-of-function mutation of the pro-inflammatory gene TBK1 - tumor necrosis factor (TNF) receptor associated factor NF-?B activator (TANK) binding kinase 1 - are at increased risk to develop NTG. This finding suggests a causal link between neuroinflammatory processes and glaucoma. Various studies have reported the presence of neuroinflammatory responses by microglia, astrocytes and other blood-born immune cells in the optic nerve head (ONH) at early stages of experimental glaucoma. Inhibition of certain pro-inflammatory pathways, particularly those associated with microglial activation, appears to be neuroprotective. In this review, we will focus on the inflammatory responses, in particular the proposed roles of microglia, in the pathogenesis of glaucoma.
Project description:Glaucoma is a neurodegenerative disease with elevated intraocular pressure as one of the major risk factors. Glaucoma leads to irreversible loss of vision and its progression involves optic nerve head cupping, axonal degeneration, retinal ganglion cell (RGC) loss, and visual field defects. Despite its high global prevalence, glaucoma still remains a major neurodegenerative disease. Introduction of mouse models of experimental glaucoma has become integral to glaucoma research due to well-studied genetics as well as ease of manipulations. Many established inherent and inducible mouse models of glaucoma are used to study the molecular and physiological progression of the disease. One such model of spontaneous mutation is the nee model, which is caused by mutation of the Sh3pxd2b gene. In both humans and mice, mutations disrupting function of the SH3PXD2B adaptor protein cause a developmental syndrome including secondary congenital glaucoma. The purpose of this study was to characterize the early onset nee glaucoma phenotype on the C57BL/6J background and to evaluate the pattern of RGC loss and axonal degeneration in specific RGC subtypes. We found that the B6.Sh3pxd2bnee mutant animals exhibit glaucoma phenotypes of elevated intraocular pressure, RGC loss and axonal degeneration. Moreover, the non-image forming RGCs survived longer than the On-Off direction selective RGCs (DSGC), and the axonal death in these RGCs was independent of their respective RGC subtype. In conclusion, through this study we characterized an experimental model of early onset glaucoma on a C57BL/6J background exhibiting key glaucoma phenotypes. In addition, we describe that RGC death has subtype-specific sensitivities and follows a specific pattern of cell death under glaucomatous conditions.
Project description:Glaucoma is a progressive neurodegenerative disease of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) associated with characteristic axon degeneration in the optic nerve. Clinically, our only method of slowing glaucomatous loss of vision is to reduce intraocular pressure (IOP), but lowering IOP is only partially effective and does not address the underlying susceptibility of RGCs to degeneration. We review the recent steps forward in our understanding of the pathophysiology of glaucoma and discuss how this understanding has given us a next generation of therapeutic targets by which to maintain RGC survival, protect or rebuild RGC connections in the retina and brain, and enhance RGC function.
Project description:PURPOSE:The Wlds mutation affords protection of retinal ganglion cell (RGC) axons in retinal ischemia and in inducible and hereditary preclinical models of glaucoma. We undertook the present study to determine whether the Nmnat1 portion of the chimeric protein provides axonal and somatic protection of RGCs in models of ischemia and glaucoma, particularly when localized to nonnuclear regions of the cell. METHODS:The survival and integrity of RGC axons and soma from transgenic mice with confirmed cytoplasmic overexpression of Nmnat1 in retina and optic nerve (cytNmnat1-Tg mice) were examined in the retina and postlaminar optic nerve 4 days following acute retinal ischemia, and 3 weeks following the chronic elevation of intraocular pressure. RESULTS:Ischemia- and glaucoma-induced disruptions of proximal segments of RGC axons that comprise the nerve fiber layer in wild-type mice were both robustly abrogated in cytNmnat1-Tg mice. More distal portions of RGC axons within the optic nerve were also protected from glaucomatous disruption in the transgenic mice. In both disease models, Nmnat1 overexpression in extranuclear locations significantly enhanced the survival of RGC soma. CONCLUSIONS:Overexpression of Nmnat1 in the cytoplasm and axons of RGCs robustly protected against both ischemic and glaucomatous loss of RGC axonal integrity, as well as loss of RGC soma. These findings reflect the more pan-cellular protection of CNS neurons that is realized by cytoplasmic Nmnat1 expression, and thus provide a therapeutic strategy for protecting against retinal neurodegeneration, and perhaps other CNS neurodegenerative diseases as well.
Project description:The development of the devastating neurodegenerative condition, Alzheimer's disease, is strongly associated with amyloid-beta (Abeta) deposition, neuronal apoptosis, and cell loss. Here, we provide evidence that implicates these same mechanisms in the retinal disease glaucoma, a major cause of irreversible blindness worldwide, previously associated simply with the effects of intraocular pressure. We show that Abeta colocalizes with apoptotic retinal ganglion cells (RGC) in experimental glaucoma and induces significant RGC apoptosis in vivo in a dose- and time-dependent manner. We demonstrate that targeting different components of the Abeta formation and aggregation pathway can effectively reduce glaucomatous RGC apoptosis in vivo, and finally, that combining treatments (triple therapy) is more effective than monotherapy. Our work suggests that targeting the Abeta pathway provides a therapeutic avenue in glaucoma management. Furthermore, our work demonstrates that the combination of agents affecting multiple stages in the Abeta pathway may be the most effective strategy in Abeta-related diseases.
Project description:Glaucoma is a multifactorial blinding disease with a major inflammatory component ultimately leading to apoptotic retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death. Pharmacological treatments lowering intraocular pressure can help slow or prevent vision loss although the damage caused by glaucoma cannot be reversed. Recently, nutritional approaches have been evaluated for their efficacy in preventing degenerative events in the retina although mechanisms underlying their effectiveness remain to be elucidated. Here, we evaluated the efficacy of a diet supplement consisting of forskolin, homotaurine, spearmint extract, and vitamins of the B group in counteracting retinal dysfunction in a mouse model of optic nerve crush (ONC) used as an in vivo model of glaucoma. After demonstrating that ONC did not affect retinal vasculature by fluorescein angiography, we determined the effect of the diet supplement on the photopic negative response (PhNR) whose amplitude is strictly related to RGC integrity and is therefore drastically reduced in concomitance with RGC death. We found that the diet supplementation prevents the reduction of PhNR amplitude (p < 0.001) and concomitantly counteracts RGC death, as in supplemented mice, RGC number assessed immunohistochemically is significantly higher than that in non-supplemented animals (p < 0.01). Major determinants of the protective efficacy of the compound are due to a reduction of ONC-associated cytokine secretion leading to decreased levels of apoptotic markers that in supplemented mice are significantly lower than in non-supplemented animals (p < 0.001), ultimately causing RGC survival and ameliorated visual dysfunction. Overall, our data suggest that the above association of compounds plays a neuroprotective role in this mouse model of glaucoma thus offering a new perspective in inflammation-associated neurodegenerative diseases of the inner retina.
Project description:Glaucoma, a blinding neurodegenerative disease, whose risk factors include elevated intraocular pressure (IOP), age, and genetics, is characterized by accelerated and progressive retinal ganglion cell (RGC) death. Despite decades of research, the mechanism of RGC death in glaucoma is still unknown. Here, we demonstrate that the genetic effect of the SIX6 risk variant (rs33912345, His141Asn) is enhanced by another major POAG risk gene, p16INK4a (cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 2A, isoform INK4a). We further show that the upregulation of homozygous SIX6 risk alleles (CC) leads to an increase in p16INK4a expression, with subsequent cellular senescence, as evidenced in a mouse model of elevated IOP and in human POAG eyes. Our data indicate that SIX6 and/or IOP promotes POAG by directly increasing p16INK4a expression, leading to RGC senescence in adult human retinas. Our study provides important insights linking genetic susceptibility to the underlying mechanism of RGC death and provides a unified theory of glaucoma pathogenesis.