The authors report the histopathological changes of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), optic disc and optic nerve in rabbit with advanced retinitis pigmentosa (RP). RP was recreated in rabbits by using bacterial artificial chromosome transgenesis, with the purpose of increasing understanding into the aetiology and pathophysiology of the condition. Light and electron microscopy were used to observe the retina, optic disc and optic nerve. RGCs were also confirmed by immunofluorescent staining with a TUJ-1 monoclonal antibody. In addition to the rod and cone degeneration, the authors observed astrocyte infiltration of the optic disc due to damage of small RGCs and nerve fibres and atrophy of the optic nerve. The histopathological study clarified that not only the outer retina, but also the inner retina, the optic disc and the optic nerve were also affected in the late stages of RP rabbits.

Histopathological changes of inner retina, optic disc, and optic nerve in rabbit with advanced retinitis pigmentosa.
Asakawa K, Ishikawa H, Uga S, et al.
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Claire Howard

Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, Salford, UK.

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