Liposome-delivered ATP effectively protects the retina against ischemia-reperfusion injury

Galina Dvoriantchikova, David J. Barakat, Eleut Hernandez, Valery I. Shestopalov, Dmitry Ivanov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Purpose: We investigated the effect of ATP (ATP) encapsulated in liposomes (ATP-liposomes) on the level of inflammation and neuronal death in the retina induced by ischemia reperfusion (IR). Methods: Primary retinal ganglion cells treated with ATP-liposomes, empty liposomes, and phosphate buffer solution (PBS) were deprived of oxygen and glucose (OGD) for 6 h in vitro, in an anaerobic chamber. Plates were assessed for the proportion of necrotic versus apoptotic cells and for cell survival 12 h after OGD. For in vivo experiments, we induced retinal ischemia by unilateral elevation of intraocular pressure for 1 h by direct corneal canulation. Mice were injected with liposomes or PBS 24 h before IR, at the time of surgery, and every 24 h until sacrifice. Transmission electron microscopic analysis was used to identify necrotic and apoptotic cells in ischemic retinas. The changes in expression of pro-inflammatory genes 24 h post reperfusion were assessed by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Corresponding changes in protein abundances were analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Cell death was evaluated by direct counting of neurons in the ganglion cell layer (GCL) of flatmounted retinas 7 days post reperfusion. Results: Treatment with ATP-liposomes increases retinal ganglion cell (RGC) survival and decreases necrotic cell death following OGD. Injection of ATP-liposomes markedly decreased necrotic cell death in the GCL following retinal ischemia. The ATP-liposome treatment reduced the expression of pro-inflammatory genes, including that of interleukin 1β (Il1β), interleukin 6 (Il6), tumor necrosis factor (Thf), chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 2 (Ccl2), chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 5 (Ccl5), chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand 10 (Cxcl10), intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (Icam1), and nitric oxide synthase 2 (Nos2), in the retina 24 h after IR and significantly reduced the GCL neuron death rate 7 days after reperfusion. Conclusions: ATP-liposome treatment of IR-challenged neural tissues suppressed necrosis and correlated with a significantly reduced level of inflammation and retinal damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2882-2890
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular vision
StatePublished - 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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