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Potential role of intravitreal human placental stem cell implants in inhibiting progression of diabetic retinopathy in type 2 diabetes: neuroprotective growth factors in the vitreous

Authors Scalinci SZ, Scorolli L, Corradetti G, Domanico, Vingolo EM, Meduri A, Bifani, Siravo

Published 23 May 2011 Volume 2011:5 Pages 691—696

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/OPTH.S21161

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2


Sergio Zaccaria Scalinci1,2, Lucia Scorolli1,2, Giulia Corradetti1,2, Daniela Domanico4, Enzo Maria Vingolo4, Alessandro Meduri5, Mario Bifani6, Duilio Siravo7
1Glaucoma and Low Vision Study Center, Department of General Surgery and Organ Transplants, University of Bologna, Bologna; 2Departments of Ophthalmology, S Orsola, Malpighi Hospital, Bologna; 3SM Goretti Hospital, Latina; 4University of Rome "La Sapienza", Rome; 5University of Messina, Messina; 6Second University of Naples, Naples; 7US Army Health Clinic, Camp Darby of Livorno, Livorno, Italy

Background: Intravitreal injection of human mesenchymal stem cells has been shown to be effective in slowing the progression of diabetic retinopathy in an animal model of chemically induced diabetes mellitus. We studied changes in growth factor levels released from human mesenchymal stem cells in the vitreous cavity as well as changes in growth factor levels in host retinal neurons following intravitreal injection.
Methods: Twenty-two Lewis rats were treated with an intravitreal human mesenchymal stem cell microinjection. Determination of neurotrophic factors released by human mesenchymal stem cells in the vitreous was carried out using real-time polymerase chain reaction.
Results: Detectable levels of neurotrophic factors were identified postoperatively in the vitreous of all rats.
Conclusion: Increased intravitreal and retinal concentrations of neuroprotective growth factors in rats confirm the neuroprotective activity of human mesenchymal stem cells in diabetic retinopathy.

Keywords: diabetic retinopathy, neuroprotection, apoptosis mechanism, stem cells, chemically induced diabetes mellitus

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