Evidences Suggesting that Distinct Immunological and Cellular Responses to Light Damage Distinguishes Juvenile and Adult Rat Retinas
International Journal of Molecular Sciences
To unravel the mechanisms behind the higher resistance to light damage of juvenile (JR) versus adult (AR) rats, Sprague Dawley rats were exposed to a bright luminous environment of 10, 000 lux. The light-induced retinopathy (LIR) was assessed with histology, electroretinography and immunohistochemistry (IHC). In JR, 2 days of exposure induced the typical LIR, while >3 days added little LIR. IHC revealed a subtle migration of microglia (Iba1 marker) from the inner to the outer retina after 3
... retina after 3 days of exposure in JR contrasting with the stronger reaction seen after 1 day in AR. Similarly, in JR, the Müller cells expressed less intense GFAP, CNTF and FGF2 staining compared to AR. Our results suggest that in JR the degree of retinal damage is not proportional to the duration of light exposure (i.e., dose-independent retinopathy), contrasting with the dose-dependent LIR reported in AR. The immature immune system in JR may explain the delayed and/or weaker inflammatory response compared to AR, a finding that would also point to the devastating contribution of the immune system in generating the LIR phenotype, a claim also advanced to explain the pathophysiology of other retinal degenerative disorders such as Age-related Macular Degeneration, Diabetic Retinopathy and Retinitis Pigmentosa.