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Title: Investigating treatment options for battlefield retinal laser injury
Author: Aslam, Sher A.
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2013
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Battlefield retinal laser injury is an infrequent but potentially devastating cause of irreversible blindness. Resultant laser-induced photoreceptor death may occur by necrosis or apoptosis, the latter which is a form of programmed cell death that may be physiological or pathological. Though necrosis cannot be prevented, apoptosis may be inhibited under certain conditions. Therefore, following retinal laser injury, specific treatment aims to target apoptotic photoreceptors and may take the form of neuroprotection or cell replacement. The primary aim of this thesis was to construct an in vivo model in which to observe the effects of retinal laser exposure on cone photoreceptor apoptosis. Current methodology to determine the effects involves histological techniques and is therefore limited to being cross-sectional. An in vivo model would permit longitudinal study to observe the cone response to injury using clinically relevant applications, including fundus autofluorescence imaging. Such a construct would enable more sensitive evaluation of new therapies which would be of direct translational relevance. The secondary aim was to investigate potential therapeutic options for retinal laser injury by pharmacological means in the form of CNTF or cell transplantation. To identify the possible molecular signals involved in neurotrophic factor-induced photoreceptor cell survival, apoptotic gene expression was investigated focusing on those genes modulated by the CNTF pathway.
Supervisor: MacLaren, Robert E. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Ophthamology ; Stem cells (clinical sciences) ; laser ; cone photoreceptors ; transplantation