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Differential gene expression of BMP2 and BMP receptors in chick retina & choroid induced by imposed optical defocus

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  28 November 2016

Center for Eye Disease & Development, School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA
Center for Eye Disease & Development, School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA
Center for Eye Disease & Development, School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA
Center for Eye Disease & Development, School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA
Center for Eye Disease & Development, School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA
*Address correspondence to: Yan Zhang, M.D., Ph.D., 588 Minor Hall, School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94720. E-mail:


Recent studies have demonstrated the defocus sign-dependent, bidirectional gene expression regulation of bone morphogenetic proteins, BMP2, 4 and 7 in chick RPE. In this study, we examined the effects of imposed positive (+10 D) and negative (−10 D) lenses on the gene expression of these BMPs and BMP receptors (BMPR1A, BMPR1B, BMPR2) in chick retina and choroid after monocular lens treatment for 2 or 48 h, as indicators of the roles of retinal and choroidal BMPs and receptors in postnatal eye growth regulation. In retina, although all genes were expressed, neither +10 nor −10 D lenses, worn for either 2 or 48 h, significantly altered gene expression. In contrast, treatment-related differential gene expression was detected in the choroid for both BMPs and their receptors, although interestingly, with the +10 D lens, BMP2 was up-regulated by 156.7 ± 19.7% after 2 h, while BMPR1A was down-regulated to 82.3 ± 12.5% only after 48 h. With the −10 D lens, only the gene expression of BMPR1B was significantly altered, being up-regulated by 162.3 ± 21.2% after 48 h. Untreated birds showed no difference in expression between their two eyes, for any of the genes examined. The finding that retinal gene expression for BMP2, 4, 7 and their receptors are not affected by short-term optical defocus contrasts with previous observations of sign-dependent expression changes for the same genes in the RPE. The latter changes were also larger and more consistent in direction than the choroidal gene expression changes reported here. The interrelationship between these various changes and their biological significance for eye growth regulation are yet to be elucidated.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2016 

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