Effects of sustained hyperoxia on revascularization in experimental retinopathy of prematurity

Xiaolin Gu, Sara Samuel, Mohamed El-Shabrawey, Ruth B. Caldwell, Manuela Bartoli, Dennis M. Marcus, Steven E. Brooks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

81 Scopus citations


PURPOSE. To investigate the effects of prolonged hyperoxia on vascular recovery and glia survival after experimentally induced retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) in the mouse. METHODS. The effects of hyperoxia on revascularization and vitreous neovascularization were compared between mice raised in 75% oxygen from postnatal day (P)7 to P12, followed by room air recovery and mice raised in 75% oxygen from P7 to P27. The status of astrocytes and Müller cells was evaluated by glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) immunohistochemistry on retinal wholemounts and serial sections. A window of susceptibility to oxygen-induced vaso-obliteration was defined by comparing the extent of retinal vaso-obliteration resulting from 2 days of hyperoxia beginning on P7, P9, P11, P13, or P15. RESULTS. Oxygen-induced vaso-obliteration of retinal capillaries was limited to the period between birth and P15. Paradoxically, revascularization was markedly accelerated and neovascularization markedly reduced in mice maintained in prolonged hyperoxia (P7-P27) compared with mice recovering in room air. The extended use of 75% oxygen during the recovery period was associated with preservation of astrocytes and Müller cells in the avascular retina. CONCLUSIONS. The antiangiogenic effect of hyperoxia on retinal capillaries is strongly dependent on postnatal age. A protocol of continuous 75% supplemental oxygen accelerates recovery of inner retinal vasculature and prevents vitreous neovascularization, by a mechanism that may involve preservation of inner retinal glia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)496-502
Number of pages7
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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