Diabetes Metab J.  2013 Aug;37(4):217-224. 10.4093/dmj.2013.37.4.217.

Identification of Novel Drug Targets for the Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy

Affiliations
  • 1Division of Vascular Biology, Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine, Kobe, Japan. auemura@med.kobe-u.ac.jp

Abstract

Vision loss in diabetic retinopathy (DR) is attributable to retinal vascular disorders that result in macular edema and neoangiogenesis. In addition to laser photocoagulation therapy, intraocular injections of antivascular endothelial growth factor drugs have contributed to the treatment of these disease conditions. Nonetheless, the clinical feasibility of intraocular drug administration has raised an increasing demand to develop alternative drugs that can fundamentally ameliorate the retinal vascular dysfunctions in DR. For this purpose, experimental animal models that reproduce human DR would be of clinical benefit. Despite the unavailability of DR models in rats or mice, pharmacological and genetic manipulations without hyperglycemia have successfully recapitulated retinal edema and neoangiogenesis in postnatal mouse retinas, thereby enabling the understanding of the pathophysiology underlying DR. This article highlights the utility of experimental mouse models of retinal vascular abnormalities and discusses cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for the onset and progression of DR. These approaches will lead to the identification of novel drug targets for the restoration of vascular integrity and regeneration of functional capillaries in DR.

Keyword

Angiopoietins; Diabetic macular edema; Diabetic retinopathy; Neoangiogenesis; PlexinD1; RhoJ; Sema3E

MeSH Terms

Angiopoietins
Animals
Capillaries
Diabetic Retinopathy
Endothelial Growth Factors
Humans
Hyperglycemia
Injections, Intraocular
Light Coagulation
Macular Edema
Mice
Models, Animal
Papilledema
Rats
Regeneration
Retina
Retinaldehyde
Vision, Ocular
Angiopoietins
Endothelial Growth Factors
Retinaldehyde
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