Immune and vascular alterations in the choroid are implicated in age-related macular degeneration (AMD). As choroidal immune cells are incompletely understood with regard to their physiology and interactions with choroidal vessels, we examined the associations between myeloid and vascular components of the choroid in young and aged mice.
To evaluate vascularisation of the peripheral retina using fluorescein angiography (FA) digital recordings of infants who had been treated with intravitreal bevacizumab (IVB) as sole therapy for zone I and posterior zone II retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).
There has been considerable debate about whether dendritic cells (DCs), which are potent antigen-presenting cells pivotal to adaptive immune responses, are present in CNS parenchyma. In studies aimed at answering this issue, we discovered that while the neural retina of young naive transgenic C57BL/6 CD11c-eYFP reporter mice contained more than 800 CD11c-positive cells/retina, these cells were virtually absent in C57BL/6 CD11c-DTR/GFP mice. Clinical fundus examination, confocal imaging of retinal whole mounts, and sections revealed colocalization of CD11c-positive cells with classic mild to severe retinal dystrophic lesions. Immunophenotypic analysis revealed that CD11c-positive cells in the neural retina of these mice had the characteristic profile of activated microglia and not DCs. Genotypic analysis confirmed that the cause of the retinal dystrophic lesions in CD11c-eYFP transgenic mice was the occurrence of the Crb1(rd8) mutation, which affects all mice of the C57BL/6N strain but not the C57BL/6J strain. Comparison of 2 different types of CD11c reporter transgenic mice revealed that a mutation in the Crb1 gene leads to retinal degeneration resulting in the activation of large numbers of local microglia that could be readily mistaken for CD11c-positive putative DCs.
The Ins2(Akita) mouse has been reported to display retinal pathology degeneration associated with advanced diabetic retinopathy. In the present study, we monitored retinal changes in these mice to establish if this model displays clinical features associated with advanced diabetic retinopathy in human patients.
Mast cells are bone marrow-derived tissue-homing leukocytes, which have traditionally been regarded as effector cells in allergic disorders, responses against parasites, and regulation of blood flow, but a broader perspective of their functional heterogeneity, such as immunomodulation, angiogenesis, tissue repair, and remodeling after injury, is now emerging. The persistence of mast cells in connective tissues throughout the evolution of vertebrates is evidence of strong selective pressure suggesting that these cells must have multiple beneficial and important roles in normal homeostasis. While mast cells are present within the uveal tract of eutherian mammals, there is little known about their presence in the choroid of other vertebrate classes.
Microbial infections of the cornea frequently cause painful, blinding and debilitating disease that is often difficult to treat and may require corneal transplantation. In addition, sterile corneal infiltrates that are associated with contact lens wear cause pain, visual impairment and photophobia. In this article, we review the role of Toll-Like Receptors (TLR) in bacterial keratitis and sterile corneal infiltrates, and describe the role of MD-2 regulation in LPS responsiveness by corneal epithelial cells. We conclude that both live bacteria and bacterial products activate Toll-Like Receptors in the cornea, which leads to chemokine production and neutrophil recruitment to the corneal stroma. While neutrophils are essential for bacterial killing, they also cause tissue damage that results in loss of corneal clarity. These disparate outcomes, therefore, represent a spectrum of disease severity based on this pathway, and further indicate that targeting the TLR pathway is a feasible approach to treating inflammation caused by live bacteria and microbial products. Further, as the P. aeruginosa type III secretion system (T3SS) also plays a critical role in disease pathogenesis by inducing neutrophil apoptosis and facilitating bacterial growth in the cornea, T3SS exotoxins are additional targets for therapy for P. aeruginosa keratitis.
Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is a major cause of visual impairment in developed countries. While DR has been described classically as a microvascular disease, recent evidence suggests that changes to retinal microglia are an early feature of retinopathy. In our study, we assessed changes in microglial distribution and morphology in vivo and ex vivo in a mouse model of non-proliferative DR, and further examined effects of age and the absence of the functional chemokine receptor Cx(3)cr1 on the progression of these changes.
Microglial cells are the resident macrophages of the central nervous system and participate in both innate and adaptive immune responses but can also lead to exacerbation of neurodegenerative pathologies after viral infections. Microglia in the outer layers of the retina and the subretinal space are thought to be involved in retinal diseases where low-grade chronic inflammation and oxidative stress play a role. This study investigated the effect of systemic infection with murine cytomegalovirus on the distribution and dynamics of retinal microglia cells. Systemic infection with murine cytomegalovirus elicited a significant increase in the number of microglia in the subretinal space and an accumulation of iris macrophages, along with morphological signs of activation. Interferon ? (IFN-?)-deficient mice failed to induce changes in microglia distribution. Bone marrow chimera experiments confirmed that microglial cells in the subretinal space were not recruited from the circulating monocyte pool, but rather represented an accumulation of resident microglial cells from within the retina. Our results demonstrate that a systemic viral infection can lead to IFN-?-mediated accumulation of microglia into the outer retinal layers and offer proof of concept that systemic viral infections alter the ocular microenvironment and therefore, may influence the course of diseases such as macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, or autoimmune uveitis, where low-grade inflammation is implicated.
This study examined whether CX3CR1 deficiency altered monocytic cell replenishment dynamics in ocular tissues in the context of radiation chimeras. Long-term effects of irradiation and effects of sublethal irradiation on ocular macrophages were also assessed. Bone marrow from BALB/c Cx 3 cr1 (+/gfp) or Cx 3 cr1 (gfp/gfp) mice was used to reconstitute full body irradiated WT mice and donor cell densities in the uveal tract were compared at 4 and 8 weeks post-transplantation. BALB/c and C57BL/6J chimeric mice were examined at 6 months of age to determine strain-related differences in microglial replenishment and radiation sensitivity. A separate cohort of mice were sublethally irradiated (5.5 Gy) and retinal tissue assessed 8 and 12 weeks later. CX3CR1 deficiency altered the early replenishment of monocytes in the posterior iris but not in the iris stroma, choroid or retina. In six month old chimeric mice, there were significantly higher GFP(+) cell densities in the uveal tract when compared to non-irradiated 8-12 week old Cx 3 cr1 (+/gfp) mice. Additionally, MHC Class II expression was upregulated on hyalocytes and GFP(+) cells in the peripheral retina and the repopulation of microglia appeared to be more rapid in C57BL/6J mice compared to BALB/c mice. Transient expression of MHC Class II was observed on retinal vasculature in sublethally irradiated mice. These data indicate CX3CR1-deficiency only slightly alters monocyte-derived cell replenishment in the murine uveal tract. Lethal irradiation leads to long-term increase in monocytic cell density in the uveal tract and retinal microglial activation, possibly as a sequelae to local irradiation induced injury. Microglial replenishment in this model appears to be strain dependent.
T lymphocytes play a decisive role in the course and clinical outcome of viral retinal infection. This review focuses on aspects of the adaptive cellular immune response against viral pathogens in the retina. Two distinct models to study adaptive cell mediated immune responses in viral retinitis are presented: (i) experimental retinitis induced by murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV), where the immune system prevents necrotizing damage to the retina and (ii) retinitis induced by the non-cytopathic lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV), where the retinal microanatomy is compromised not by the virus, but by the immune response itself. From these studies it is clear that, in the context of viral infections, the cytotoxic T cell response against a pathogen in the retina does not differ from that seen in other organs, and that once such a response has been initiated, clearing of virus from retinal tissue has priority over preservation of retinal architecture and function. Furthermore, implications drawn from these models for gene therapy in retinal diseases are discussed.
Macrophages or activated microglia in the subretinal space are considered a hallmark of some retinal pathologies. We investigated the effects of age, pigmentation and CX(3)CR1 deficiency on the accumulation of macrophages/activated microglia in the outer retina of young and old Cx(3)cr1(gfp/gfp) (CX(3)CR1-deficient) or Cx(3)cr1(gfp/+) mice on either a pigmented (C57BL/6) or albino (BALB/c) background. Quantitative analysis of immunostained retinal-choroidal whole mounts revealed an increase in subretinal macrophage (SRM?) numbers in young Cx(3)cr1(gfp/gfp) mice compared with Cx(3)cr1(gfp/+) mice, however the increase was more marked in albino Cx(3)cr1(gfp/gfp) mice. In aged mice, large numbers of SRM?/activated microglia replete with autofluorescent debris were noted in both old pigmented Cx(3)cr1(gfp/gfp) and Cx(3)cr1(gfp/+) mice proving this accumulation was not CX(3)CR1-dependent. While CX(3)CR1 deficiency leads to an early onset of SRM? accumulation, our data reveal that this change occurs in both aged Cx(3)cr1(gfp/+) and Cx(3)cr1(gfp/gfp) pigmented mice in the absence of marked retinal degeneration and is likely a normal response to aging.
During bacterial and viral infections, unmethylated CpG-DNA released by proliferating and dying microbes is recognized by toll-like receptor (TLR) 9 in host cells, initiating innate immune responses. Many corneal infections occur secondary to epithelial breaches and represent a major cause of vision impairment and blindness globally. To mimic this clinical situation, we investigated mechanisms of TLR9 ligand-induced corneal inflammation in mice after epithelial debridement. Application of CpG oligodeoxynucleotides (ODNs) resulted in neutrophil and macrophage infiltration to the cornea and loss of transparency. By 6 hours after CpG-ODN administration, TLR9 mRNA was increased in the cornea and retina. In vivo clinical examination at 24 hours revealed inflammatory infiltrates in the vitreous and retina, which were confirmed ex vivo to be neutrophils and macrophages, along with activated resident microglia. CpG-ODN-induced intraocular inflammation was abrogated in TLR9(-/-) and macrophage-depleted mice. Bone marrow reconstitution of irradiated TLR9(-/-) mice with TLR9(+/+) bone marrow led to restored corneal inflammatory responses to CpG-ODN. Fluorescein isothiocyanate-CpG-ODN rapidly penetrated the cornea and ocular media to reach the retina, where it was present within CD68(+) retinal macrophages and microglia. These data show that topically applied CpG-ODN induces intraocular inflammation owing to TLR9 activation of monocyte-lineage cells. These novel findings indicate that microbial CpG-DNA released during bacterial and/or viral keratitis can cause widespread inflammation within the eye, including the retina.
The mouse dura mater, pia mater, and choroid plexus contain resident macrophages and dendritic cells (DCs). These cells participate in immune surveillance, phagocytosis of cellular debris, uptake of antigens from the surrounding cerebrospinal fluid and immune regulation in many pathologic processes. We used Cx3cr1 knock-in, CD11c-eYFP transgenic and bone marrow chimeric mice to characterize the phenotype, density and replenishment rate of monocyte-derived cells in the meninges and choroid plexus and to assess the role of the chemokine receptor CX3CR1 on their number and tissue distribution. Iba-1 major histocompatibility complex (MHC) Class II CD169 CD68 macrophages and CD11c putative DCs were identified in meningeal and choroid plexus whole mounts. Comparison of homozygous and heterozygous Cx3cr1 mice did not reveal CX3CR1-dependancy on density, distribution or phenotype of monocyte-derived cells. In turnover studies, wild type lethally irradiated mice were reconstituted with Cx3cr1/-positive bone marrow and were analyzed at 3 days, 1, 2, 4 and 8 weeks after transplantation. There was a rapid replenishment of CX3CR1-positive cells in the dura mater (at 4 weeks) and the choroid plexus was fully reconstituted by 8 weeks. These data provide the foundation for future studies on the role of resident macrophages and DCs in conditions such as meningitis, autoimmune inflammatory disease and in therapies involving irradiation and hematopoietic or stem cell transplantation.
Macrophages in the olfactory neuroepithelium are thought to play major roles in tissue homeostasis and repair. However, little information is available at present about possible heterogeneity of these monocyte-derived cells, their turnover rates, and the role of chemokine receptors in this process. To start addressing these issues, this study used Cx?cr1(gfp) mice, in which the gene sequence for eGFP was knocked into the CX?CR1 gene locus in the mutant allele. Using neuroepithelial whole-mounts from Cx?cr1(gfp/+) mice, we show that eGFP(+) cells of monocytic origin are distributed in a loose network throughout this tissue and can be subdivided further into two immunophenotypically distinct subsets based on MHC-II glycoprotein expression. BM chimeric mice were created using Cx?cr1(gfp/+) donors to investigate turnover of macrophages (and other monocyte-derived cells) in the olfactory neuroepithelium. Our data indicate that the monocyte-derived cell population in the olfactory neuroepithelium is actively replenished by circulating monocytes and under the experimental conditions, completely turned over within 6 months. Transplantation of Cx?cr1(gfp/gfp) (i.e., CX?CR1-deficient) BM partially impaired the replenishment process and resulted in an overall decline of the total monocyte-derived cell number in the olfactory epithelium. Interestingly, replenishment of the CD68(low)MHC-II(+) subset appeared minimally affected by CX?CR1 deficiency. Taken together, the established baseline data about heterogeneity of monocyte-derived cells, their replenishment rates, and the role of CX?CR1 provide a solid basis to further examine the importance of different monocyte subsets for neuroregeneration at this unique frontier with the external environment.
The eye and the brain are immunologically privileged sites, a property previously attributed to the lack of a lymphatic circulation. However, recent tracking studies confirm that these organs have good communication through classical site-specific lymph nodes, as well as direct connection through the blood circulation with the spleen. In addition, like all tissues, they contain resident myeloid cell populations that play important roles in tissue homeostasis and the response to foreign antigens. Most of the macrophage and dendritic cell (DC) populations in the eye are restricted to the supporting connective tissues, including the cornea, while the neural tissue (the retina) contains almost no DCs, occasional macrophages (perivascularly distributed), and a specialized myeloid cell type, the microglial cell. Resident microglial cells are normally programmed for immunological tolerance. The privileged status of the eye, however, is relative, as it is susceptible to immune-mediated inflammatory disease, both infectious and autoimmune. Intraocular inflammation (uveitis and uveoretinitis) and corneal graft rejection constitute two of the more common inflammatory conditions affecting the eye leading to considerable morbidity (blindness). As corneal graft rejection occurs almost exclusively by indirect allorecognition, host DCs play a major role in this process and are likely to be modified in their behavior by the ocular microenvironment. Ocular surface disease, including allergy and atopy, also comprise a significant group of immune-mediated eye disorders in which DCs participate, while infectious disease such as herpes simplex keratitis is thought to be initiated via corneal DCs. Intriguingly, some more common conditions previously thought to be degenerative (e.g. age-related macular degeneration) may have an autoimmune component in which ocular DCs and macrophages are critically involved. Recently, the possibility of harnessing the tolerizing potential of DCs has been applied to experimental models of autoimmune uveoretinitis with good effect. This approach has considerable potential for use in translational clinical therapy to prevent sight-threatening disease caused by ocular inflammation.
The composition and location of professional antigen presenting cells (APC) varies in different mucosal surfaces. The cornea, long considered an immune-privileged tissue devoid of APCs, is now known to host a heterogeneous network of bone marrow-derived cells. Here, we utilized transgenic mice that express enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) from the CD11c promoter (pCD11c) in conjunction with immunohistochemical staining to demonstrate an interesting stratification of APCs within non-inflamed murine corneas. pCD11c(+) dendritic cells (DCs) reside in the basal epithelium, seemingly embedded in the basement membrane. Most DCs express MHC class II on at least some dendrites, which extend up to 50 µm in length and traverse up 20 µm tangentially towards the apical surface of the epithelium. The DC density diminishes from peripheral to central cornea. Beneath the DCs and adjacent to the stromal side of the basement membrane reside pCD11c(-) CD11b(+) putative macrophages that express low levels of MHC class II. Finally, MHC class II(-)pCD11c(-) CD11b(+) cells form a network throughout the remainder of the stroma. This highly reproducible stratification of bone marrow-derived cells is suggestive of a progression from an APC function at the exposed corneal surface to an innate immune barrier function deeper in the stroma.
Teres minor atrophy occurs either in isolation, associated with other rotator cuff muscle pathologies or in quadrilateral space syndrome. In the latter condition, compression of the axillary nerve is the likely cause; however, the anatomy of the nerve to teres minor and how this may relate to isolated teres minor atrophy have not been extensively investigated. In light of the significance of teres minor atrophy in shoulder pathology, we performed a combined radiological and anatomical study of teres minor and its nerve supply.
To develop a technique by which murine cytomegalovirus (MCMV) infection can be confirmed and monitored in vivo in various ocular compartments and to investigate the dynamics and time course of primary ocular CMV infection.
The mammalian cornea contains an extensive network of resident macrophages and dendritic cells. To determine the role of these cells in LPS-induced corneal inflammation, TLR4(-/-) mice were sublethally irradiated and reconstituted with bone marrow cells from either enhanced GFP (eGFP)(+)/C57BL/6 or eGFP(+)/TLR4(-/-) mice. The corneal epithelium was abraded, LPS was added topically, and cellular infiltration to the corneal stroma and development of corneal haze were examined after 24 h. TLR4(-/-) mice reconstituted with C57BL/6, but not TLR4(-/-) bone marrow cells donor cells were found to cause infiltration of eGFP(+) cells to the cornea, including neutrophils, and also increased corneal haze compared with saline-treated corneas. In a second experimental approach, corneas of transgenic macrophage Fas induced apoptosis (Mafia) mice were stimulated with LPS. These mice express eGFP and a suicide gene under control of the c-fms promoter, and systemic treatment with the FK506 dimerizer (AP20187) causes Fas-mediated apoptosis of monocytic cells. AP20187-treated mice had significantly fewer eGFP(+) cells in the cornea than untreated mice. After stimulation with LPS neutrophil recruitment and development of corneal haze were impaired in AP20187-treated mice compared with untreated controls. Furthermore, LPS induced CXCL1/KC and IL-1alpha production within 4 h in corneas of untreated Mafia mice, which is before cellular infiltration; however, cytokine production was impaired after AP20187 treatment. Together, results from both experimental approaches demonstrate an essential role for resident corneal monocytic lineage cells (macrophages and dendritic cells) in development of corneal inflammation.
Membrane nanotubes (MNTs) are newly discovered cellular extensions that are either blind-ended or can connect widely separated cells. They have predominantly been investigated in cultured isolated cells, however, previously we were the first group to demonstrate the existence of these structures in vivo in intact mammalian tissues. We previously demonstrated the frequency of both cell-cell or bridging MNTs and blind-ended MNTs was greatest between major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II(+) cells during corneal injury or TLR ligand-mediated inflammation. The present study aimed to further explore the dynamics of MNT formation and their size, presence in another tissue, the dura mater, and response to stress factors and an active local viral infection of the murine cornea. Confocal live cell imaging of myeloid-derived cells in inflamed corneal explants from Cx(3)cr1(GFP) and CD11c(eYFP) transgenic mice revealed that MNTs form de novo at a rate of 15.5??m/min. This observation contrasts with previous studies that demonstrated that in vitro these structures originate from cell-cell contacts. Conditions that promote formation of MNTs include inflammation in vivo and cell stress due to serum starvation ex vivo. Herpes simplex virus-1 infection did not cause a significant increase in MNT numbers in myeloid cells in the cornea above that observed in injury controls, confirming that corneal epithelium injury alone elicits MNT formation in vivo. These novel observations extend the currently limited understanding of MNTs in live mammalian tissues.
The distribution, density, and phenotype of hyalocytes or vitreous macrophages in mouse eyes was examined during normal aging and in models of background diabetic retinopathy, retinal vascular proliferation, and exposure to TLR4 and TLR9 ligands.
Related JoVE Video
Journal of Visualized Experiments
What is Visualize?
JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.
How does it work?
We use abstracts found on PubMed and match them to JoVE videos to create a list of 10 to 30 related methods videos.
Video X seems to be unrelated to Abstract Y...
In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.