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Research in autophagy continues to accelerate,(1) and as a result many new scientists are entering the field. Accordingly, it is important to establish a standard set of criteria for monitoring macroautophagy in different organisms. Recent reviews have described the range of assays that have been used for this purpose.(2,3) There are many useful and(More)
To determine whether the photoreceptors change structurally and functionally during aging, and to analyze whether pigmentation in the retinal pigment epithelium might be a contributing factor. Young, adult, and aged C57BL/6 and Balb/c mice (1, 4, and 17 months of age) were housed under a 12-h light/12-h dark cycle, with an ambient light intensity at the eye(More)
Uncontrolled activation of the alternative pathway of complement is thought to be associated with age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The alternative pathway is continuously activated in the fluid phase, and tissue surfaces require continuous complement inhibition to prevent spontaneous autologous tissue injury. Here, we examined the effects of(More)
Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) acts through TrkB, a receptor with kinase activity, and mitigates light-induced apoptosis in adult mouse rod photoreceptors. To determine whether TrkB signaling is necessary for rod development and function, we examined the retinas of mice lacking all isoforms of the TrkB receptor. Rod migration and differentiation(More)
The influence of neural activity on the morphology of retinal-axon-terminal arbors and the precision of the developing retinotectal projection in zebrafish embryos was explored. Terminal-arbor morphology and their distribution in the tectum was determined with anatomical fiber-tracing methods using the fluorescent dyes dil and diO. To allow development(More)
PURPOSE To strengthen our understanding about the role of trkB in rod development by correlating functional and biochemical retinal phenotypes with levels of trkB expression in two independently created trkB transgenic lines. METHODS Juvenile mice that carried two hypomorphic trkB alleles (trkBfbz/fbz) expressing roughly 25% of normal trkB, and their(More)
The rd mouse, an accepted animal model for photoreceptor degeneration in retinitis pigmentosa, has a recessive mutation for the gene encoding the beta-subunit of the cGMP phosphodiesterase. This mutation results in high levels of cGMP, which leaves an increased number of the cGMP-gated channels in the open state, thus allowing intracellular calcium (Ca(2+))(More)
PURPOSE Photoreceptors can be prevented from undergoing apoptosis in response to constant light by the application of exogenous neuroprotective agents, including brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). BDNF, however, cannot exert its effect directly on photoreceptors because they do not express receptors for BDNF. It has been proposed that BDNF released(More)
PURPOSE RPE65 is essential for the generation of 11-cis retinal. Rod photoreceptors in the RPE65-knockout (Rpe65(-/-)) mouse are known to degenerate slowly with age. This study was designed to examine cone photoreceptors and the expression of cone-specific genes in the Rpe65(-/-) mouse. METHODS Gene expression changes were identified by microarray and(More)
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness in developed countries; with the aging population, the negative health impacts and costs of the disease will increase dramatically over the next decade. Although the exact cause of AMD is unknown, genetic studies have implicated the complement system as well as other immune responses(More)