Kaempferol Protects Against Retinal Photoreceptor Degeneration in a Mouse Model of Light-Induced Retinal Injury
Published: 1 February 2023
Journal of Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics , Volume 39, pp 80-85; https://doi.org/10.1089/jop.2022.0128
Abstract:Purpose: Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a leading cause of blindness in developed countries with little in the way of treatment that prevents progression to end-stage disease. Kaempferol (KF) is a plant-derived dietary flavonoid that has demonstrated as a strong antioxidant showing neuroprotection in stroke models. We hypothesize that KF has protective effects against retinal degeneration and may serve as a therapeutic agent against AMD. Methods: BALB/c albino mice were assigned to 1 of 2 groups: control-treated or KF-treated retinal light injury mice. Mice were exposed to 8,000 lux cool white fluorescent light for 2 h to induce light injury. Control or KF was injected intraperitoneally after light injury for 5 days. Scotopic electroretinography (ERG) was recorded before light injury and 7 days after light injury. The retinal morphology and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL) assays were performed after light injury. Results: ERG a- and b-wave amplitudes were significantly reduced in the retinal light injury group compared with the nonretinal light injury group. Retinal light injury produced markedly thinning of the outer nuclear layer along with significant TUNEL-positive signals. In contrast KF treatments significantly attenuated reduction of ERG a- and b- wave amplitudes and the loss of the outer nuclear layer. Conclusions: KF protects retinal photoreceptors and preserves retinal function against retinal degeneration caused by light injury. These initial findings suggest that KF may represent a novel therapy for retinal degenerative conditions such as AMD.
Keywords: retinal light injury / AMD / kaempferol / electroretinogram / apoptosis
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