Bestrophin detected in the basal membrane of the retinal epithelium and drusen of monkeys with drusenoid maculopathy

P. Gouras, K. Braun, L. Ivert, M. Neuringer, J. A. Mattison

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    10 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    Purpose: To determine if bestrophin is present in the basal membrane of macular retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) and in drusen of rhesus monkeys with age-related drusenoid maculopathy. Methods: The macular region of three rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta), 23-24 years of age, with drusenoid maculopathy was dissected from eyes fixed with 4% paraformaldehyde. The macula was sectioned into rectangular pieces. The sclera was removed from each segment and the remainder separated into segments of neural retina with retinal epithelium or choroid with retinal epithelium. These segments were incubated with a goat polyclonal antibody to human bestrophin 1, reacted with gold-labeled rabbit antibody to goat IgG, silver-enhanced, and processed for transmission electron microscopy. Results: Bestrophin-labeled gold particles were found in quasi-linear arrays on the basal surface of the macular RPE and also within drusen where bestrophin was found in segments of membranous-like material. The array density of the bestrophin-linked gold particles on the basal membrane of the epithelium had a maximal value of about 5-100 bestrophin molecules/micron2. Immuno-detection of bestrophin was most effective when examined in an RPE layer that remained attached to the neural retina, where the basal surface of the epithelium is more directly exposed to the antibodies. Conclusion: Bestrophin is present on the basal membrane of macular RPE of rhesus monkeys with age-related drusenoid maculopathy, and also found in the membranous-like structures of drusen. The latter finding provides insight into the pathogenesis of drusen by indicating that segments of the basal membrane of RPE contribute to the material that accumulates within drusen.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1051-1056
    Number of pages6
    JournalGraefe's Archive for Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology
    Volume247
    Issue number8
    DOIs
    StatePublished - May 7 2009

    Keywords

    • Agerelated maculopathy
    • Bestrophin
    • Drusen
    • Macula
    • Monkeys
    • Retinal pigment epithelium

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Ophthalmology
    • Sensory Systems
    • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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