Image_6_Carbamazepine Alleviates Retinal and Optic Nerve Neural Degeneration in Diabetic Mice via Nerve Growth Factor-Induced PI3K/Akt/mTOR Activation.tif (145.84 kB)

Image_6_Carbamazepine Alleviates Retinal and Optic Nerve Neural Degeneration in Diabetic Mice via Nerve Growth Factor-Induced PI3K/Akt/mTOR Activation.tif

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posted on 01.11.2019, 04:05 by Nehal M. Elsherbiny, Yousra Abdel-Mottaleb, Amany Y. Elkazaz, Hoda Atef, Rehab M. Lashine, Amal M. Youssef, Wessam Ezzat, Sabah H. El-Ghaiesh, Rabie E. Elshaer, Mohamed El-Shafey, Sawsan A. Zaitone

Aim: Diabetic retinopathy causes loss of vision in adults at working-age. Few therapeutic options are available for treatment of diabetic retinopathy. Carbamazepine (CARB), a widely used antiepileptic drug, was recently accounted for its neuroprotective effect. Nerve growth factor (NGF) activates various cascades among which, PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway has a vital action in NGF-mediated neuronal differentiation and survival. This study evaluated the effect of CARB in the treatment of diabetic retina and unveiled some of the underlying molecular mechanisms.

Main Methods: Alloxan diabetes model was induced in 36 albino well-acclimatized mice. After establishment of the diabetic model in 9 weeks, mice were assigned to treatment groups: (1) saline, (2) alloxan-diabetic, (3 and 4) alloxan+CARB (25 or 50 mg per kg p.o) for 4 weeks. After completion of the therapeutic period, mice were sacrificed and eyeballs were enucleated. Retinal levels of NGF and PI3K/Akt were assessed using real-time polymerase chain reaction. Further, total and phosphorylated TrKA, PI3K, Akt, mTOR as well as Caspase-3 were measured by Western blot analysis.

Key Findings: Histopathological examination demonstrated that CARB attenuated vacuolization and restored normal thickness and organization of retinal cell layers. In addition, CARB increased pTrKA/TrKA ratio and ameliorated diabetes-induced reduction of NGF mRNA and immunostaining in retina. Additionally, it augmented the mRNA expression of PI3K and Akt, as well as the protein level of the phosphorylated PI3/Akt/mTOR.

Significance: Results highlighted, for the first time, the neuronal protective effect for CARB in diabetic retina, which is mediated, at least in part, by activation of the NGF/PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway.

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