Purpose. It is a matter of increasing concern that exposure to light-emitting diodes (LED), particularly blue light (BL), damages retinal cells. This study aimed to investigate the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) damage caused by BL and to elucidate the role of nuclear factor (erythroid-derived)-related factor 2 (Nrf2) in the pathogenesis of BL-induced RPE damage. Methods. ARPE-19, a human RPE cell line, and mouse primary RPE cells from wild-type and Nrf2 knockout (Nrf2 -/-) mice were cultured under blue LED exposure (intermediate wavelength, 450 nm). Cell death rate and reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation were measured. TUNEL staining was performed to detect apoptosis. Real-time polymerase chain reaction was performed on NRF2 mRNA, and western blotting was performed to detect Nrf2 proteins in the nucleus or cytoplasm of RPE cells. Results. BL exposure increased cell death rate and ROS generation in ARPE-19 cells in a time-dependent manner; cell death was caused by apoptosis. Moreover, BL exposure induced NRF2 mRNA upregulation and Nrf2 nuclear translocation in RPE. Cell death rate was significantly higher in RPE cells from Nrf2 -/- mice than from wild-type mice. Conclusions. The Nrf2 pathway plays an important role in protecting RPE cells against BL-induced oxidative stress.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cell Biology