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      Genistein attenuates retinal inflammation associated with diabetes by targeting of microglial activation

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          Abstract

          Purpose

          Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is associated with microglial activation and increased levels of inflammatory cytokines. Genistein, a tyrosine kinase inhibitor, has been shown to possess anti-inflammatory potential that so far untested in animal models of diabetes. The aims of this study are to evaluate the efficacy of genistein for alleviation of diabetes-induced retinal inflammation and also to gain insight into the molecular mechanisms involved therein by analyzing the effect of genistein on concomitant microglia activation in the diabetic retina and in isolated cells.

          Methods

          Streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic Sprague Dawley rats were used. After diabetes was established for two weeks a single intravitreal injection of genistein or vehicle was performed. Forty-eight hours later, rats were killed, their retinal and vitreal samples were processed for Quantitative Real Time-PCR (qRT–PCR) and Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) analyses, respectively. For the in vitro study, isolated microglial cells from retinas of newborn rats were used.

          Results

          mRNA as well as protein levels for tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α), a robust marker of inflammation, were increased in the retina early in the course of diabetes. Moreover, diabetes resulted in elevation of ionized calcium binding adaptor molecule-1 ( Iba1) mRNA, known to be upregulated in activated microglia. These effects of diabetes in retina were all reduced by intervention treatment with genistein. Using an in vitro bioassay, we demonstrated the release of TNF-α from microglia activated by glycated albumin, a risk factor for diabetic disorders. This inflammatory signal involves the activation of tyrosine kinase and its subsequent events, ERK and P38 MAPKs. Genistein represses the release of TNF-α and significantly inhibits ERK and P38 phosphorylation in activated microglial cells by acting as a tyrosine kinase inhibitor.

          Conclusions

          These findings show genistein to be effective in dampening diabetes-induced retinal inflammation by interfering with inflammatory signaling (ERK and P38 MAPKs) that occurs in activated microglia. This beneficial effect of genistein may represent a new intervention therapy to modulate early pathological pathways long before the occurrence of vision loss among diabetics.

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          Most cited references 38

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          Global prevalence of diabetes: estimates for the year 2000 and projections for 2030.

          The goal of this study was to estimate the prevalence of diabetes and the number of people of all ages with diabetes for years 2000 and 2030. Data on diabetes prevalence by age and sex from a limited number of countries were extrapolated to all 191 World Health Organization member states and applied to United Nations' population estimates for 2000 and 2030. Urban and rural populations were considered separately for developing countries. The prevalence of diabetes for all age-groups worldwide was estimated to be 2.8% in 2000 and 4.4% in 2030. The total number of people with diabetes is projected to rise from 171 million in 2000 to 366 million in 2030. The prevalence of diabetes is higher in men than women, but there are more women with diabetes than men. The urban population in developing countries is projected to double between 2000 and 2030. The most important demographic change to diabetes prevalence across the world appears to be the increase in the proportion of people >65 years of age. These findings indicate that the "diabetes epidemic" will continue even if levels of obesity remain constant. Given the increasing prevalence of obesity, it is likely that these figures provide an underestimate of future diabetes prevalence.
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            A central role for inflammation in the pathogenesis of diabetic retinopathy.

            Diabetic retinopathy is a leading cause of adult vision loss and blindness. Much of the retinal damage that characterizes the disease results from retinal vascular leakage and nonperfusion. Diabetic retinal vascular leakage, capillary nonperfusion, and endothelial cell damage are temporary and spatially associated with retinal leukocyte stasis in early experimental diabetes. Retinal leukostasis increases within days of developing diabetes and correlates with the increased expression of retinal intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) and CD18. Mice deficient in the genes encoding for the leukocyte adhesion molecules CD18 and ICAM-1 were studied in two models of diabetic retinopathy with respect to the long-term development of retinal vascular lesions. CD18-/- and ICAM-1-/- mice demonstrate significantly fewer adherent leukocytes in the retinal vasculature at 11 and 15 months after induction of diabetes with STZ. This condition is associated with fewer damaged endothelial cells and lesser vascular leakage. Galactosemia of up to 24 months causes pericyte and endothelial cell loss and formation of acellular capillaries. These changes are significantly reduced in CD18- and ICAM-1-deficient mice. Basement membrane thickening of the retinal vessels is increased in long-term galactosemic animals independent of the genetic strain. Here we show that chronic, low-grade subclinical inflammation is responsible for many of the signature vascular lesions of diabetic retinopathy. These data highlight the central and causal role of adherent leukocytes in the pathogenesis of diabetic retinopathy. They also underscore the potential utility of anti-inflammatory treatment in diabetic retinopathy.
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              Organization and regulation of mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling pathways.

              Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) are components of a three kinase regulatory cascade. There are multiple members of each component family of kinases in the MAPK module. Specificity of regulation is achieved by organization of MAPK modules, in part, by use of scaffolding and anchoring proteins. Scaffold proteins bring together specific kinases for selective activation, sequestration and localization of signaling complexes. The recent elucidation of scaffolding mechanisms for MAPK pathways has begun to solve the puzzle of how specificity in signaling can be achieved for each MAPK pathway in different cell types and in response to different stimuli. As new MAPK members are defined, determining their organization in kinase modules will be critical in understanding their select role in cellular regulation.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Mol Vis
                MV
                Molecular Vision
                Molecular Vision
                1090-0535
                2010
                08 October 2010
                : 16
                : 2033-2042
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Department of Ophthalmology, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, GA
                [2 ]Department of Medicine, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, GA
                [3 ]Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Pharmacy, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt
                Author notes
                Correspondence to: Gregory I. Liou, Department of Ophthalmology, Medical College of Georgia, 1120 15th Street, Augusta, GA, 30912, Phone: (706) 721-4599; FAX: (706) 721-1158; email: giliou@ 123456mcg.edu
                Article
                219 2010MOLVIS0217
                2965567
                21042558
                Copyright © 2010 Molecular Vision.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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                Vision sciences

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