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Molecules 2015, 20(12), 22395-22410; doi:10.3390/molecules201219785

Retinoprotective Effects of Bilberry Anthocyanins via Antioxidant, Anti-Inflammatory, and Anti-Apoptotic Mechanisms in a Visible Light-Induced Retinal Degeneration Model in Pigmented Rabbits

1
Beijing Key Laboratory of Functional Food from Plant Resources, College of Food Science & Nutritional Engineering, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100083, China
2
Oil Crops Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Wuhan 430062, China
3
Hubei Key Laboratory of Lipid Chemistry and Nutrition, Wuhan 430062, China
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: David D. Kitts
Received: 6 September 2015 / Revised: 27 October 2015 / Accepted: 11 November 2015 / Published: 14 December 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Antioxidants—A Risk-Benefit Analysis for Health)
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Abstract

Excessive visible light exposure can induce damage to retinal cells and contribute to the development or progression of age-related macular degeneration. In this study we created a model of phototoxicity in pigmented rabbits. Furthermore, we investigated the protective effect of bilberry anthocyanin extract (BAE, Table A1) and explored the possible mechanisms of action in this model. The model of light-induced retinal damage was established by the pigmented rabbits exposed to light at 18,000 lx for 2 h, and they were sacrificed on day 7. After administration of BAE at dosages of 250 and 500 mg/kg/day, retinal dysfunction was significantly inhibited in terms of electroretinograms, and the decreased thicknesses of retinal outer nuclear layer and lengths of the outer segments of the photoreceptor cells were suppressed in rabbits with retinal degeneration. BAE attenuated the changes caused by light to certain apoptotic proteins (Bax, Bcl-2, and caspase-3). The extract increased the levels of superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, and catalase, as well as the total antioxidant capacity, but decreased the malondialdehyde level in the retinal cells. BAE inhibited the light-induced elevation in the levels of proinflammatory cytokines and angiogenic parameters (IL-1β and VEGF). Results showed that visible light-induced retinal degeneration model in pigmented rabbits was successfully established and BAE exhibited protective effects by increasing the antioxidant defense mechanisms, suppressing lipid peroxidation and proinflammatory cytokines, and inhibiting retinal cells apoptosis. View Full-Text
Keywords: retinoprotection; bilberry anthocyanin; photoreceptor; light-induced retinal degeneration; pigmented rabbits retinoprotection; bilberry anthocyanin; photoreceptor; light-induced retinal degeneration; pigmented rabbits
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Wang, Y.; Zhao, L.; Lu, F.; Yang, X.; Deng, Q.; Ji, B.; Huang, F. Retinoprotective Effects of Bilberry Anthocyanins via Antioxidant, Anti-Inflammatory, and Anti-Apoptotic Mechanisms in a Visible Light-Induced Retinal Degeneration Model in Pigmented Rabbits. Molecules 2015, 20, 22395-22410.

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