• Development and Characterization of Transgenic Models for Studying Progressive Retinal Degeneration and Regeneration

      Zuber, Michael; Yueh Ku, Ray (2017)
      Vision is the sense that human beings rely on the most in the daily life. The irreversibility of retinal damage has been a great challenge to the modern medicine and remains an interest of research in hope of treating, even curing the loss of vision. The work presented in this dissertationutilizes transgenic Xenopus. laevisas an animal model to investigate the possibility of studying progressive retinal degeneration in a species that is known for robust regeneration of damaged retina. I investigated the expression of intermediate filament proteins during retinal gliosis, which has been suggested to be an inhibitory component that prevents effective treatment in degenerating retina. In order to understand the response of retinal bipolar cells in degenerating X. laevisretina, I characterized the expression pattern of metabotropoic glutamate receptor 6 (grm6) and the transgenic X. laevismodel that expresses eGFP under the control of mouse Grm6 promoter in the retina.As a follow up study of a previous study published by our lab,I optimized the condition of using F2 transgenic animals in preparation of a long term study of retinal degeneration in X. laevis. In conclusion, the work in my thesis includes development of tools to further the understanding of retinal degeneration and regeneration in transgenic X. laevis.