Accumulating evidence has shown that diabetes accelerates aging and endothelial cell senescence is involved in the pathogenesis of diabetic vascular complications, including diabetic retinopathy. Oxidative stress is recognized as a key factor in the induction of endothelial senescence and diabetic retinopathy. However, specific mechanisms involved in oxidative stress-induced endothelial senescence have not been elucidated. We hypothesized that Sirt6, which is a nuclear, chromatin-bound protein critically involved in many pathophysiologic processes such as aging and inflammation, may have a role in oxidative stress-induced vascular cell senescence. Measurement of Sirt6 expression in human endothelial cells revealed that H2O2 treatment significantly reduced Sirt6 protein. The loss of Sirt6 was associated with an induction of a senescence phenotype in endothelial cells, including decreased cell growth, proliferation and angiogenic ability, and increased expression of senescence-associated β-galactosidase activity. Additionally, H2O2 treatment reduced eNOS expression, enhanced p21 expression, and dephosphorylated (activated) retinoblastoma (Rb) protein. All of these alternations were attenuated by overexpression of Sirt6, while partial knockdown of Sirt6 expression by siRNA mimicked the effect of H2O2. In conclusion, these results suggest that Sirt6 is a critical regulator of endothelial senescence and oxidative stress-induced downregulation of Sirt6 is likely involved in the pathogenesis of diabetic retinopathy.
Aging is associated with an increased incidence and prevalence of renal glomerular diseases. Sirtuin (Sirt) 6, a nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD)-dependent histone deacetylase, has been shown to protect against multiple age-associated phenotypes; however it is unknown whether Sirt6 has a direct pathophysiologic role in the kidney. In the present study, we demonstrate that Sirt6 is expressed in the kidney and aging Sirt6-deficient mice exhibit renal hypertrophy with glomerular enlargement. Sirt6 deletion induces podocyte injury, including decreases in slit diaphragm proteins, foot process effacement, and cellular loss, resulting in proteinuria. Knockdown of Sirt6 in cultured primary murine podocytes induces shape changes with loss of process formation and cell apoptosis. Moreover, Sirt6 deficiency results in progressive renal inflammation and fibrosis. Collectively, these data provide compelling evidence that Sirt6 is important for podocyte homeostasis and maintenance of glomerular function, and warrant further investigation into the role of Sirt6 in age-associated kidney dysfunction.
We found that the TNF-like weak inducer of apoptosis (TWEAK)/fibroblast growth factor inducible-14 (Fn14) pathway is involved in the development of pathologic retinal neovascularization. Hypoxia inducible factor-1α is likely implicated in the upregulation of Fn14.
Purpose: To investigate the effects of nicotine on retinal alterations in early stage diabetes in an established rodent model. Materials and Methods: Sprague-Dawley rats were examined using a combination of confocal scanning laser ophthalmoscopy and spectral domain optical coherence tomography to determine changes in retinal structure in response to nicotine exposure, diabetes and the combined effects of nicotine and diabetes. Diabetes was induced by a single injection of 65 mg/kg streptozotocin and nicotine injections were administered subcutaneously daily. Retinal thickness in the superior, inferior, nasal and temporal quadrants were determined based on SD-OCT volume scans (20° × 20°) centered on the optic disc. Segmentation of discrete retinal layers was performed on a subset of SD-OCT cross-sections to further examine changes in each treatment group. Survival of neurons within the ganglion cell layer (GCL) was assessed by confocal morphometric imaging. Results: The control group did not experience any significant change throughout the study. The nicotine treatment group experienced an average decrease in total retinal thickness (TRT) of 9.4 μm with the majority of the loss localized within the outer nuclear layer (ONL) as determined by segmentation analysis (P < 0.05). The diabetic group exhibited a trend toward decreased TRT while segmentation analysis of the DR group revealed significant thinning within the ONL (P < 0.05). The combination of nicotine and diabetes revealed a significant increase of 8.9 μm in the TRT (P < 0.05) accompanied by a decrease in the number of GCL neurons. Conclusions: We demonstrated significant temporal changes in retinal morphology in response to nicotine exposure, diabetes and with the combined effects of nicotine and diabetes. These findings may have implications in determining treatment strategies for diabetic patients using products containing nicotine such as cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, electronic cigarettes, or smoking cessation products.
Corneal transparency, dependent on the integrity of epithelial cells, is essential for vision. Corneal epithelial damage is one of the most commonly observed ocular conditions and proper wound healing is necessary for corneal transparency. Sirt6, a histone deacetylase, has been shown to regulate many cellular events including aging and inflammation. However, its specific role in corneal epithelial wound healing remains unknown. Here we demonstrated that Sirt6 was expressed in corneal epithelial cells and its expression decreased with age. In an in vivo corneal epithelial wound healing model, Sirt6 deficiency resulted in delayed and incomplete wound healing and was associated excessive inflammation in the corneal stroma and dysfunction of Notch signaling, leading to keratinization of the corneal epithelium and corneal opacity. Aging Sirt6-deficient mice spontaneously developed corneal keratitis with extensive infiltration of inflammatory cells into the cornea. In vitro experiments demonstrated that primary corneal epithelial cells with Sirt6 downregulation expressed increased basal levels of inflammatory genes and exhibited hyper-inflammatory reactivity to IL-1β and TNFα treatment. These results provide compelling evidence that Sirt6 is a critical regulator of inflammation in the cornea, and is responsible for corneal epithelial wound healing, thus contributing to the maintenance of epithelial integrity and corneal transparency.
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