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1.  Tropisms of AAV for Subretinal Delivery to the Neonatal Mouse Retina and Its Application for In Vivo Rescue of Developmental Photoreceptor Disorders 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(1):e54146.
Adeno-associated virus (AAV) is well established as a vehicle for in vivo gene transfer into the mammalian retina. This virus is promising not only for gene therapy of retinal diseases, but also for in vivo functional analysis of retinal genes. Previous reports have shown that AAV can infect various cell types in the developing mouse retina. However, AAV tropism in the developing retina has not yet been examined in detail.
Methodology/Principal Findings
We subretinally delivered seven AAV serotypes (AAV2/1, 2/2, 2/5, 2/8, 2/9, 2/10, and 2/11) of AAV-CAG-mCherry into P0 mouse retinas, and quantitatively evaluated the tropisms of each serotype by its infecting degree in retinal cells. After subretinal injection of AAV into postnatal day 0 (P0) mouse retinas, various retinal cell types were efficiently transduced with different AAVs. Photoreceptor cells were efficiently transduced with AAV2/5. Retinal cells, except for bipolar and Müller glial cells, were efficiently transduced with AAV2/9. Horizontal and/or ganglion cells were efficiently transduced with AAV2/1, AAV2/2, AAV2/8, AAV2/9 and AAV2/10. To confirm the usefulness of AAV-mediated gene transfer into the P0 mouse retina, we performed AAV-mediated rescue of the Cone-rod homeobox gene knockout (Crx KO) mouse, which exhibits an outer segment formation defect, flat electroretinogram (ERG) responses, and photoreceptor degeneration. We injected an AAV expressing Crx under the control of the Crx 2kb promoter into the neonatal Crx KO retina. We showed that AAV mediated-Crx expression significantly decreased the abnormalities of the Crx KO retina.
In the current study, we report suitable AAV tropisms for delivery into the developing mouse retina. Using AAV2/5 in photoreceptor cells, we demonstrated the possibility of gene replacement for the developmental disorder and subsequent degeneration of retinal photoreceptors caused by the absence of Crx.
PMCID: PMC3545928  PMID: 23335994
2.  Identification of Autoantibodies against TRPM1 in Patients with Paraneoplastic Retinopathy Associated with ON Bipolar Cell Dysfunction 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(5):e19911.
Paraneoplastic retinopathy (PR), including cancer-associated retinopathy (CAR) and melanoma-associated retinopathy (MAR), is a progressive retinal disease caused by antibodies generated against neoplasms not associated with the eye. While several autoantibodies against retinal antigens have been identified, there has been no known autoantibody reacting specifically against bipolar cell antigens in the sera of patients with PR. We previously reported that the transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily M, member 1 (TRPM1) is specifically expressed in retinal ON bipolar cells and functions as a component of ON bipolar cell transduction channels. In addition, this and other groups have reported that human TRPM1 mutations are associated with the complete form of congenital stationary night blindness. The purpose of the current study is to investigate whether there are autoantibodies against TRPM1 in the sera of PR patients exhibiting ON bipolar cell dysfunction.
Methodology/Principal Findings
We performed Western blot analysis to identify an autoantibody against TRPM1 in the serum of a patient with lung CAR. The electroretinograms of this patient showed a severely reduced ON response with normal OFF response, indicating that the defect is in the signal transmission between photoreceptors and ON bipolar cells. We also investigated the sera of 26 patients with MAR for autoantibodies against TRPM1 because MAR patients are known to exhibit retinal ON bipolar cell dysfunction. Two of the patients were found to have autoantibodies against TRPM1 in their sera.
Our study reveals TRPM1 to be one of the autoantigens targeted by autoantibodies in at least some patients with CAR or MAR associated with retinal ON bipolar cell dysfunction.
PMCID: PMC3096646  PMID: 21611200
3.  TRPM1 mutations are associated with the complete form of congenital stationary night blindness 
Molecular Vision  2010;16:425-437.
To identify human transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily M, member 1 (TRPM1) gene mutations in patients with congenital stationary night blindness (CSNB).
We analyzed four different Japanese patients with complete CSNB in whom previous molecular examination revealed no mutation in either nyctalopin (NYX) or glutamate receptor, metabotropic 6 (GRM6). The ophthalmologic examination included best-corrected visual acuity, refraction, biomicroscopy, ophthalmoscopy, fundus photography, Goldmann kinetic perimetry, color vision tests, and electroretinography (ERG). Exons 2 through 27 and the exon-intron junction regions of human TRPM1 were sequenced.
Five different mutations in human TRPM1 were identified. Mutations were present in three unrelated patients with complete CSNB. All three patients were compound heterozygotes. Fundus examination revealed no abnormalities other than myopic changes, and the single bright-flash, mixed rod-cone ERG showed a “negative-type” configuration with a reduced normal a-wave and a significantly reduced b-wave amplitude. Our biochemical and cell biologic analyses suggest that the two identified IVS mutations lead to abnormal TRPM1 protein production, and imply that the two identified missense mutations lead to the mislocalization of the TRPM1 protein in bipolar cells (BCs).
Human TRPM1 mutations are associated with the complete form of CSNB in Japanese patients, suggesting that TRPM1 plays an essential role in mediating the photoresponse in ON BCs in humans as well as in mice.
PMCID: PMC2838739  PMID: 20300565
4.  Functional Roles of Otx2 Transcription Factor in Postnatal Mouse Retinal Development▿ † 
Molecular and Cellular Biology  2007;27(23):8318-8329.
We previously reported that Otx2 is essential for photoreceptor cell fate determination; however, the functional role of Otx2 in postnatal retinal development is still unclear although it has been reported to be expressed in retinal bipolar cells and photoreceptors at postnatal stages. In this study, we first examined the roles of Otx2 in the terminal differentiation of photoreceptors by analyzing Otx2; Crx double-knockout mice. In Otx2+/−; Crx−/− retinas, photoreceptor degeneration and downregulation of photoreceptor-specific genes were much more prominent than in Crx−/− retinas, suggesting that Otx2 has a role in the terminal differentiation of the photoreceptors. Moreover, bipolar cells decreased in the Otx2+/−; Crx−/− retina, suggesting that Otx2 is also involved in retinal bipolar-cell development. To further investigate the role of Otx2 in bipolar-cell development, we generated a postnatal bipolar-cell-specific Otx2 conditional-knockout mouse line. Immunohistochemical analysis of this line showed that the expression of protein kinase C, a marker of mature bipolar cells, was significantly downregulated in the retina. Electroretinograms revealed that the electrophysiological function of retinal bipolar cells was impaired as a result of Otx2 ablation. These data suggest that Otx2 plays a functional role in the maturation of retinal photoreceptor and bipolar cells.
PMCID: PMC2169187  PMID: 17908793

Results 1-4 (4)