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BRIEF RESEARCH REPORT article

Front. Med. | doi: 10.3389/fmed.2021.681169

Oral scutellarin treatment ameliorates retinal thinning and visual deficits in experimental glaucoma Provisionally accepted The final, formatted version of the article will be published soon. Notify me

 Jingyuan Zhu1, 2,  Anoop Sainulabdeen2, 3, Krystal Akers2,  Vishnu Adi2, Jeffrey R. Sims2, Eva Yarsky2, Yi Yan2, Yu Yu4, Hiroshi Ishikawa2, Christopher K. Leung5, 6, Gadi Wollstein2, 7, Joel S. Schuman2, 7, 8, Wenbin Wei1 and  Kevin C. Chan2, 7, 8, 9*
  • 1Department of Ophthalmology, Beijing Tongren Eye Center, Beijing key Laboratory of Intraocular Tumor Diagnosis and Treatment, Beijing Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences Key Lab, Medical Artificial Intelligence Research and Verification Key Laboratory of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Beijing Tongren Hospital, Capital Medical University, China
  • 2Department of Ophthalmology, NYU Grossman School of Medicine, United States
  • 3Department of Surgery and Radiology, College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Kerala Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, India
  • 4Pleryon Therapeutics Limited, China
  • 5University Eye Center, Hong Kong Eye Hospital, Hong Kong, SAR China
  • 6Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, China
  • 7Center for Neural Science, New York University, United States
  • 8Neuroscience Institute, Langone Medical Center, New York University, United States
  • 9Department of Radiology, School of Medicine, New York University, United States

Purpose: Intraocular pressure (IOP) is currently the only modifiable risk factor for glaucoma, yet glaucoma can continue to progress despite controlled IOP. Thus, development of glaucoma neurotherapeutics remains an unmet need. Scutellarin is a flavonoid that can exert neuroprotective effects in the eye and brain. Here, we investigated the neurobehavioral effects of scutellarin treatment in a chronic IOP elevation model.

Methods: Ten adult C57BL/6J mice were unilaterally injected with an optically clear hydrogel into the anterior chamber to obstruct aqueous outflow and induce chronic IOP elevation. Eight other mice received unilateral intracameral injection of phosphate-buffered saline only. Another eight mice with hydrogel-induced unilateral chronic IOP elevation also received daily oral gavage of 300 mg/kg scutellarin. Tonometry, optical coherence tomography, and optokinetics were performed longitudinally for 4 weeks to monitor the IOP, retinal nerve fiber layer thickness, total retinal thickness, visual acuity, and contrast sensitivity of both eyes in all three groups.

Results: Intracameral hydrogel injection resulted in unilateral chronic IOP elevation with no significant inter-eye IOP difference between scutellarin treatment and untreated groups. Upon scutellarin treatment, the hydrogel-injected eyes showed less retinal thinning and reduced visual behavioral deficits when compared to the untreated, hydrogel-injected eyes. No significant difference in retinal thickness or optokinetic measures was found in the contralateral, non-treated eyes over time or between all groups.

Conclusion: Using the non-invasive measuring platform, oral scutellarin treatment appeared to preserve retinal structure and visual function upon chronic IOP elevation in mice. Scutellarin may be a novel neurotherapeutic agent for glaucoma treatment.

Keywords: Glaucoma, Intraocular pressure (IOP), Scutellarin (Scu), Retina, Optokinetics

Received: 16 Mar 2021; Accepted: 07 Jul 2021.

Copyright: © 2021 Zhu, Sainulabdeen, Akers, Adi, Sims, Yarsky, Yan, Yu, Ishikawa, Leung, Wollstein, Schuman, Wei and Chan. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Kevin C. Chan, NYU Grossman School of Medicine, Department of Ophthalmology, New York, 10016, New York, United States, chuenwing.chan@fulbrightmail.org