Author(s): Rota R, Chiavaroli C, Garay RP, Hannaert P
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Abstract Calcium dobesilate stabilizes blood-retinal barrier in patients with diabetic retinopathy and possesses antioxidant properties in the retinas of rats with streptozotocin-induced diabetes, exposed ex vivo to ischemia-reperfusion. Here we investigated the action of calcium dobesilate on retinal albumin leakage in streptozotocin-diabetic rats, together with relevant in vivo retinal antioxidant and permeability markers, i.e., carboxymethyl-lysine-advanced glycation end product (CML-AGE) formation and vascular endothelial cell growth factor (VEGF) overexpression. Twenty days after streptozotocin administration, diabetic rats were treated for 10 days with calcium dobesilate (100 mg/kg/day per os) or vehicle. Retinal albumin leakage, CML-AGE formation, and VEGF overexpression were evaluated by immunohistochemistry of frozen eye sections. Diabetic rats exhibited dramatic increases in: (i) retinal albumin leakage (31\% of positive vessels vs. 0.2\% in nondiabetic rats, P<0.008), (ii) CML-AGE retinal occurrence (40+/-3\% vs. undetectable positive vessels), and (iii) retinal VEGF protein expression (14.6+/-1.1 vs. 3.5+/-0.5 VEGF-positive spots/field, P<10(-4)). Calcium dobesilate significantly reduced: (i) retinal albumin leakage (by 70\%, P<0.008), (ii) retinal CML-AGEs contents (by 62\%, P<0.008), and (iii) retinal VEGF expression (by 69.4\%, P<0.008). In conclusion, calcium dobesilate orally given to diabetic rats markedly reduced retinal hyperpermeability, CML-AGE contents, and VEGF overexpression. These results strongly suggest that calcium dobesilate stabilizes blood-retinal barrier in diabetic retinopathy via an in situ antioxidant action. Further studies in patients are required to confirm such view.
This article was published in Eur J Pharmacol
and referenced in Journal of Diabetes & Metabolism