Aldose reductase inhibitor fidarestat counteracts diabetes-associated cataract formation, retinal oxidative-nitrosative stress, glial activation, and apoptosis

Viktor R. Drel, Pal Pacher, Tayyeba K. Ali, Jeho Shin, Ulrich Julius, Azza B. El-Remessy, Irina G. Obrosova

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80 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study was aimed at evaluating the potent and specific aldose reductase inhibitor fidarestat, on diabetes-associated cataract formation, and retinal oxidative-nitrosative stress, glial activation, and apoptosis. Control and streptozotocin-diabetic rats were treated with or without fidarestat (16 mg kg-1d-1) for 10 weeks after an initial 2-week period without treatment. Lens changes were evaluated by indirect oplithalmoscopy and portable slit lamp. Nitrotyrosine, poly(ADP-ribose), and glial fibrillary acidic protein expression were assessed by immunohistochemistry. The rate of apoptosis was quantified in flat-mounted retinas by TUNEL assay with immunoperoxidase staining. To dissect the effects of high glucose exposure in retinal microvascular cells, primary bovine retinal pericytes and endothelial cells were cultured in 5 or 30 mM glucose, with or without fidarestat (10 pM) for 3-14 days. Apoptosis was assessed by TUNEL assay, nitrotyrosine and poly(ADP-ribose) by immunocytochemistry, and Bax and Bcl-2 expression by Western blot analyses. Fidarestat treatment prevented diabetic cataract formation and counteracted retinal nitrosative stress, and poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase activation, as well as glial activation. The number of TUNEL-positive nuclei (mean ± SEM) was increased approximately 4-fold in diabetic rats vs. controls (207±33 vs. 49±4, p<0.01), and this increase was partially prevented by fidarestat (106±34, p<0.05 vs. untreated diabetic group). The apoptotic cell number increased with the prolongation of exposure of both pericytes and endothelial cells to high glucose levels. Fidarestat counteracted nitrotyrosine and poly(ADP-ribose) accumulation and apoptosis in both cell types. Antiapoptotic effect of fidarestat in high glucose-exposed retinal pericytes was not associated with the inhibition of Bax or increase in Bcl-2 expression. In conclusion, the findings, i) support an important role for aldose reductase in diabetes-associated cataract formation, and retinal oxidative-nitrosative stress, glial activation, and apoptosis, and ii) provide a rationale for the development of aldose reductase inhibitors, and, in particular, fidarestat, for the prevention and treatment of diabetic ocular complications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)667-676
Number of pages10
JournalInternational journal of molecular medicine
Volume21
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2008
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Aldose reductase
  • Apoptosis
  • Diabetic cataract
  • Fidarestat
  • Glial activation
  • Nitrosative stress
  • Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics

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