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PLoS One. 2013 Jun 27;8(6):e68173. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0068173. Print 2013.

A Novel Platelet-Activating Factor Receptor Antagonist Inhibits Choroidal Neovascularization and Subretinal Fibrosis.

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Department of Ophthalmology, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan ; Department of Ophthalmology, the First Hospital of China Medical University, Shenyang, China.


Choroidal neovascularization (CNV) is a critical pathogenesis in age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the most common cause of blindness in developed countries. To date, the precise molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying CNV have not been elucidated. Platelet-activating factor (PAF) has been previously implicated in angiogenesis; however, the roles of PAF and its receptor (PAF-R) in CNV have not been addressed. The present study reveals several important findings concerning the relationship of the PAF-R signaling with CNV. PAF-R was detected in a mouse model of laser-induced CNV and was upregulated during CNV development. Experimental CNV was suppressed by administering WEB2086, a novel PAF-R antagonist. WEB2086-dependent suppression of CNV occurred via the inhibition of macrophage infiltration and the expression of proangiogenic (vascular endothelial growth factor) and proinflammatory molecules (monocyte chemotactic protein-1 and IL-6) in the retinal pigment epithelium-choroid complex. Additionally, WEB2086-induced PAF-R blockage suppresses experimentally induced subretinal fibrosis, which resembles the fibrotic subretinal scarring observed in neovascular AMD. As optimal treatment modalities for neovascular AMD would target the multiple mechanisms of AMD-associated vision loss, including neovascularization, inflammation and fibrosis, our results suggest PAF-R as an attractive molecular target in the treatment of AMD.

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