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Title: Characterisation and application of olfactory ensheathing cells for glaucoma induced optic nerve damage
Author: Rayapureddi, S.
Awarding Body: University College London (University of London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2012
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Glaucoma is the term used to describe a group diseases characterised by a specific type of damage to the optic nerve head (ONH) known as cupping and a characteristic type of visual field loss. This loss is associated with progressive atrophy and loss of the retinal ganglion cells. Glaucoma is a leading cause of irreversible blindness in the world. This project was aimed at investigating olfactory ensheathing cells (OEC), a population of radial glia proven to be neuroprotective in central and peripheral nerve injury models, and their potential to protect the retinal ganglion cells in glaucoma. We studied the interactions of RGC and OEC in culture. We show that OEC can straighten, ensheath and bundle RGC neurites as well as support the survival of RGC and their synapses in culture. We also show that OEC endocytose dead RGC in culture. We modified a rat model of glaucoma (where paramagnetic microbeads are injected into the anterior chamber of the rat eyes) and characterised the early and late functional changes in the glaucomatous retina. We showed that RGC function was compromised in the early stages of glaucoma, before histological changes set in. We injected OEC into glaucomatous rat eyes to study the effects of OEC on optic nerve damage. The presence of OEC in the vitreous cavity of the glaucomatous rat eye significantly reduced the optic nerve damage in glaucomatous eyes. In summary, the work presented in this thesis provides an insight into • The functional changes of RGC in the early stages of experimental glaucoma and • Protection of RGC in experimental glaucoma by introduction of OEC into the vitreous.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available