Reduction of experimental diabetic vascular leakage by delivery of angiostatin with a recombinant adeno-associated virus vector

Mong Ping Shyong, Fenq Lih Lee, Ping Chang Kuo, Ai Ching Wu, Huey Chung Cheng, Show Li Chen, Tao Hsin Tung, Yeou Ping Tsao*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

30 Scopus citations


Purpose: To evaluate the efficacy of recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vector expressing mouse angiostatin (Kringle domains 1 to 4) in reducing retinal vascular leakage in an experimental diabetic rat model. Methods: rAAV-angiostatin was delivered by intravitreal injection to the right eyes of Sprague-Dawley rats. As a control, the contralateral eye received an intravitreal injection of rAAV-lacZ. Gene delivery was confirmed by reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Diabetes was induced by intravenous injection of streptozotocin (STZ). Vascular permeability changes were evaluated by extravascular albumin accumulation and leakage of intravenous-injected fluorescein isothiocynate-bovine serum albumin (FITC-BSA). Effects of rAAV-angiostatin on expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF), occludin, and phospho-p42/p44 MAP kinase in retina tissue were analyzed by western blotting. Results: The rAAV-angiostatin injections led to sustained angiostatin gene expression in retina as confirmed by RT-PCR, and reduced extravascular albumin accumulation in STZ-induced diabetic retina. Further, rAAV-angiostatin significantly decreased intravascularly injected FITC-BSA leakage at 5 days (p=0.001), 10 days (p<0.001), and 15 days (p=0.001) after STZ-induced diabetes, as compared to the control eyes receiving rAAV-lacZ. Expression of VEGF and phosphorylation of p42/p44 MAP kinase in retina was reduced by rAAV-angiostatin at day 1 (p=0.043 for both VEGF and phospho-p42/ p44 MAP kinase) after STZ-induced diabetes compared with rAAV-lacZ eyes. rAAV-angiostatin reduced retinal occludin loss at 10 days after STZ-induced diabetes (n=5, p=0.041). There was no significant difference in retinal PEDF expression between eyes injected with rAAV-angiostatin and rAAV-lacZ. Conclusions: Intravitreal delivery of rAAV-angiostatin reduces vascular leakage in an STZ-induced diabetic model. This effect is associated with a reduction in the retinal occludin loss induced by diabetes and downregulation of retinal VEGF and phosphor-p42/p44 MAP kinase expression. This gene transfer approach may reduce diabetic macular edema, providing protection in diabetic patients at risk for macular edema.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-141
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular Vision
StatePublished - 31 01 2007
Externally publishedYes


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