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PURPOSE - To provide proof-of-concept that the extent of intraretinal manganese uptake after systemic MnCl(2) injection, detected with manganese-enhanced MRI (MEMRI), assesses alterations in intraretinal ion demand in models of ocular insult.
METHODS - In Sprague-Dawley rats, retinal ion demand and thickness were measured from MEMRI data collected before, 4 hours after, or 1, 3, and 7 days after intraperitoneal injection of MnCl(2). Choroidal contribution or blood-retinal barrier permeability surface area product (BRB PS') was determined using MRI after Gd-DTPA injection. Ocular injury was evaluated 24 hours after intravitreal injection of phosphate-buffered saline (PBS, vehicle) or PBS + ouabain, or after intraperitoneal injection of sodium iodate. Manganese retinal toxicity was assessed by comparing full-field, white-flash electroretinographic (ERG) data obtained before and after systemic MnCl(2) administration. Rat choroidal thickness was measured from cross-sections prepared from paraformaldehyde-perfused adult rats.
RESULTS - Comparing pre- and post-Gd-DTPA images demonstrated minimal choroidal contribution to intraretinal analysis. Intraretinal signal intensity returned to baseline by 7 days after MnCl(2) injection. After ouabain injection, receptor and postreceptor uptake of manganese were subnormal (P < 0.05). After sodium iodate exposure, intraretinal manganese uptake was supernormal (P < 0.05) and did not increase with increasing BRB PS'. ERG data did not show any effect of MnCl(2) on photoreceptor a-wave and postreceptor b-wave relative to baseline at either observation time.
CONCLUSIONS - MEMRI measurements of uptake of systemically administered and nontoxic doses of manganese appear to be a powerful approach for measuring alteration in intraretinal ion demand in models of ocular injury.