Photoreceptor cell death by apoptosis in dogs with sudden acquired retinal degeneration syndrome.

Publications // Richard Dubielzig // Mar 11 1998

PubMed ID: 9492927

Author(s): Miller PE, Galbreath EJ, Kehren JC, Steinberg H, Dubielzig RR. Photoreceptor cell death by apoptosis in dogs with sudden acquired retinal degeneration syndrome. Am J Vet Res. 1998 Feb;59(2):149-52.

Journal: American Journal Of Veterinary Research, Volume 59, Issue 2, Feb 1998

OBJECTIVE To examine the role of apoptosis in retinal photoreceptor degeneration in dogs with sudden acquired retinal degeneration syndrome (SARDS).

SAMPLE POPULATION Retinas from 3 dogs with SARDS and from 2 clinically normal adult dogs.

PROCEDURE Apoptosis was identified by in situ end-labeling and observation of characteristic morphologic changes by light microscopy.

RESULTS The degree of photoreceptor degeneration varied with duration of vision loss in SARDS-affected eyes. The retina of all 3 SARDS-affected eyes had numerous (34, 61, and 70) apoptotic nuclei per section that were overwhelmingly located in the outer nuclear layer. Apoptotic nuclei were not detected, or were rare in similarly sized retinal sections from normal dogs. Inflammation was not an important feature of SARDS.

CONCLUSIONS Apoptosis appears to be at least 1 mechanism of photoreceptor cell death in dogs with SARDS.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE Because apoptosis appears to be a final common pathway in many retinal degeneration syndromes, future treatment strategies that control apoptosis in other diseases may be applicable to dogs with SARDS. Halting this pathway may allow some photoreceptors to survive and, perhaps, preserve vision.