Nerve growth factor delays retinal degeneration in C3H mice

  • Alessandro Lambiase
  • Luigi Aloe


• Background: The aim of the present study was to investigate the biological role of nerve growth factor (NGF) on retinal degeneration in the C3H mouse strain. This strain is characterized by a single gene mutation (rd) which leads to photoreceptor degeneration resembling human retinitis pigmentosa. • Methods: Neural retinas from 1- to 25 day-old C3H mice were dissected from outer ocular tissues, dissociated in cell suspension, stained with a vital dye and counted in a hemocytometer. For in vivo study, NGF was injected into the intraocular or retro-ocular area, and at the end of the treatment the mice were killed. The eyes were enucleated, fixed and cut by cryostat into 14-μm serial sections. The serial sections were stained with hematoxylin-eosin and the outer nuclear layer (ONL) was measured using a computerized image analysis system. • Results: An intraocular injection of NGF, or repeated retro-ocular injections, induced a significant increase in ONL thickness compared to controls. • Conclusion: Our data show that NGF inhibits retinal degeneration in C3H mice. The mechanism(s) underlying the protective action of NGF against retinal cell death remains to be established.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alessandro Lambiase
    • 1
    • 2
  • Luigi Aloe
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Neurobiology, CNRRomeItaly
  2. 2.Department of OphthalmologyUniversity of Rome “Tor Vergata”RomeItaly

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