A Robust Model System for Retinal Hypoxia: Live Imaging of Calcium Dynamics and Gene Expression Studies in Primary Human Mixed Retinal Culture

Shahulhameed, Shahna and Swain, Sarpras and Jana, Soumya and et al, . (2020) A Robust Model System for Retinal Hypoxia: Live Imaging of Calcium Dynamics and Gene Expression Studies in Primary Human Mixed Retinal Culture. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 13 (7). ISSN 1662-4548

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The detailed mechanisms underlying oxidative stress that leads to neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration in retinal vascular conditions, including diabetic retinopathy, retinopathy of prematurity etc., remain largely unexplored mainly due to a lack of suitable disease models that can simulate the inherent neuron–glia interactions in human retina. Specifically, establishment of a mixed retinal culture (MRC) containing both neuron and glial cell types remains a challenge due to different conditions required for their optimal growth and differentiation. Here, we establish a novel primary MRC model system containing neurons, astrocytes, Müller glia, and microglia from human donor retina that can be used to study the neuromodulatory effects of glial cells under the stress. The cell characterization based on immunostaining with individual cell type–specific markers and their presence in close vicinity to each other further underscores their utility for studying their cross talk. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first instance of an in vitro model obtained from human donor retina containing four major cell types. Next, we induce hypoxic stress to MRC to investigate if hypoxia activated neuroglia modulates altered gene expression for inflammatory, apoptotic, and angiogenic markers and Ca2+ transients by live cell imaging. Further, we performed k-means clustering of the Ca2+ responses to identify the modification of clustering pattern in stressed condition. Finally, we provide the evidence that the altered Ca2+ transient correlates to differential expression of genes shown to be involved in neuroinflammation, angiogenesis, and neurodegeneration under the hypoxic conditions as seen earlier in human cell lines and animal models of diabetic retinopathy. The major features of the hypoxic conditions in the proposed human MRC model included: increase in microglia activity, chemokine and cytokine expression, and percentage of cells having higher amplitude and frequency of Ca2+ transients. Thus, the proposed experimental system can potentially serve as an ideal in vitro model for studying the neuroinflammatory and neurodegenerative changes in the retina and identifying newer drug targets.

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IITH Creators:
IITH CreatorsORCiD
Giri, Lopamudrahttp://orcid.org/0000-0002-2352-7919
Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: calcium spiking, glia, hypoxia, inflammation, neurodegeneration, neurons, retina, Indexed in Scopus
Subjects: Electrical Engineering
Chemical Engineering
Divisions: Department of Chemical Engineering
Department of Electrical Engineering
Depositing User: Team Library
Date Deposited: 02 Mar 2020 05:41
Last Modified: 02 Mar 2020 05:41
URI: http://raiith.iith.ac.in/id/eprint/7495
Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.3389/fnins.2019.01445
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