BACKGROUND: Vascular cells in diabetes are subjected to daily fluctuations from high to low glucose. We aimed at investigating whether pulsed exposure to different glucose concentrations influences apoptosis in human retinal pericytes (HRP) versus bovine retinal pericytes (BRP), with consequences on the onset of diabetic retinopathy, and the possible protective role of thiamine. METHODS: BRP and HRP (wild-type and immortalized) were grown in physiological/high glucose for 7 days, and then returned to physiological glucose for another 24, 48 or 72 h. Cells were also kept intermittently at 48-h intervals in high/normal glucose for 8 days, with/without thiamine/benfotiamine. Apoptosis was determined through ELISA, TUNEL, Bcl-2, Bax and p53 expression/concentration. RESULTS: Continuous exposure to high glucose increased apoptosis in BRP, but not HRP. BRP apoptosis normalized within 24 h of physiological glucose re-entry, while HRP apoptosis increased within 24-48 h of re-entry. Intermittent exposure to high glucose increased apoptosis in HRP and BRP. Bcl-2/Bax results were consistent with DNA fragmentation, while p53 was unchanged. Thiamine and benfotiamine countered intermittent high glucose-induced apoptosis. CONCLUSIONS: Human pericytes are less prone to apoptosis induced by persistently high glucose than bovine cells. However, while BRP recover after returning to physiological levels, HRP are more vulnerable to both downwardly fluctuating glucose levels and intermittent exposure. These findings reinforce the hypotheses that (1) glycaemic fluctuations play a role in the development of diabetic retinopathy and (2) species-specific models are needed. Thiamine and benfotiamine prevent human pericyte apoptosis, indicating this vitamin as an inexpensive approach to the prevention and/or treatment of diabetic complications.

Different apoptotic responses of human and bovine pericytes to fluctuating glucose levels and protective role of thiamine

BELTRAMO, Elena;BERRONE, ELENA;TARALLO, SONIA;PORTA, Massimo
2009-01-01

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Vascular cells in diabetes are subjected to daily fluctuations from high to low glucose. We aimed at investigating whether pulsed exposure to different glucose concentrations influences apoptosis in human retinal pericytes (HRP) versus bovine retinal pericytes (BRP), with consequences on the onset of diabetic retinopathy, and the possible protective role of thiamine. METHODS: BRP and HRP (wild-type and immortalized) were grown in physiological/high glucose for 7 days, and then returned to physiological glucose for another 24, 48 or 72 h. Cells were also kept intermittently at 48-h intervals in high/normal glucose for 8 days, with/without thiamine/benfotiamine. Apoptosis was determined through ELISA, TUNEL, Bcl-2, Bax and p53 expression/concentration. RESULTS: Continuous exposure to high glucose increased apoptosis in BRP, but not HRP. BRP apoptosis normalized within 24 h of physiological glucose re-entry, while HRP apoptosis increased within 24-48 h of re-entry. Intermittent exposure to high glucose increased apoptosis in HRP and BRP. Bcl-2/Bax results were consistent with DNA fragmentation, while p53 was unchanged. Thiamine and benfotiamine countered intermittent high glucose-induced apoptosis. CONCLUSIONS: Human pericytes are less prone to apoptosis induced by persistently high glucose than bovine cells. However, while BRP recover after returning to physiological levels, HRP are more vulnerable to both downwardly fluctuating glucose levels and intermittent exposure. These findings reinforce the hypotheses that (1) glycaemic fluctuations play a role in the development of diabetic retinopathy and (2) species-specific models are needed. Thiamine and benfotiamine prevent human pericyte apoptosis, indicating this vitamin as an inexpensive approach to the prevention and/or treatment of diabetic complications.
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Beltramo E; Berrone E; Tarallo S; Porta M.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2318/130981
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