Oligomeric proanthocyanidin protects retinal ganglion cells against oxidative stress-induced apoptosis****

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Abstract

The death of retinal ganglion cells is a hallmark of many optic neurodegenerative diseases such as glaucoma and retinopathy. Oxidative stress is one of the major reasons to cause the cell death. Oligomeric proanthocyanidin has many health beneficial effects including antioxidative and neuroprotective actions. Here we tested whether oligomeric proanthocyanidin may protect retinal glion cells against oxidative stress induced-apoptosis in vitro. Retinal ganglion cells were treated with hydrogen peroxide with or without oligomeric proanthocyanidin. 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay showed that treating retinal ganglion cell line RGC-5 cells with 20 μmol/L oligomeric proanthocyanidin significantly decreased the hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) induced death. Results of flow cytometry and Hoechst staining demonstrated that the death of RGC-5 cells was mainly caused by cell apoptosis. We further found that expression of pro-apoptotic Bax and caspase-3 were significantly decreased while anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 was greatly increased in H2O2damaged RGC-5 cells with oligomeric proanthocyanidin by western blot assay. Furthermore, in retinal explant culture, the number of surviving retinal ganglion cells in H2O2-damaged retinal ganglion cells with oligomeric proanthocyanidin was significantly increased. Our studies thus demonstrate that oligomeric proanthocyanidin can protect oxidative stress-injured retinal ganglion cells by inhibiting apoptotic process.

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