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Am J Pathol. 2013 Jun;182(6):2380-90. doi: 10.1016/j.ajpath.2013.02.015. Epub 2013 Apr 4.

Adrenomedullin-RAMP2 system is crucially involved in retinal angiogenesis.

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Department of Cardiovascular Research, Shinshu University Graduate School of Medicine, Matsumoto, Japan.


Adrenomedullin (ADM) is an endogenous peptide first identified as a strong vasodilating molecule. We previously showed that in mice, homozygous knockout of ADM (ADM(-/-)) or its receptor regulating protein, RAMP2 (RAMP2(-/-)), is embryonically lethal due to abnormal vascular development, thereby demonstrating the importance of ADM and its receptor signaling to vascular development. ADM expression in the retina is strongly induced by ischemia; however, its role in retinal pathophysiology remains unknown. Here, we analyzed oxygen-induced retinopathy (OIR) using heterozygous ADM and RAMP2 knockout mice models (ADM(+/-) or RAMP2(+/-), respectively). In addition, we analyzed the role of the ADM-RAMP2 system during earlier stages of retinal angiogenesis using an inducible endothelial cell-specific RAMP2 knockout mouse line (DI-E-RAMP2(-/-)). Finally, we assessed the ability of antibody-induced ADM blockade to control pathological retinal angiogenesis in OIR. In OIR, neovascular tufts, avascular zones, and hypoxic areas were all smaller in ADM(+/-) retinas compared with wild-type mice. ADM(+/-) retinas also exhibited reduced levels of VEGF and eNOS expression. DI-E-RAMP2(-/-) showed abnormal retinal vascular patterns in the early stages of development. However, ADM enhanced the proliferation and migration of retinal endothelial cells. Finally, we found intravitreal injection of anti-ADM antibody reduced pathological retinal angiogenesis. In conclusion, the ADM-RAMP2 system is crucially involved in retinal angiogenesis. ADM and its receptor system are potential therapeutic targets for controlling pathological retinal angiogenesis.

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