Ocular disposition and tolerance of ganciclovir-loaded albumin nanoparticles after intravitreal injection in rats

Biomaterials. 2002 Apr;23(7):1587-94. doi: 10.1016/s0142-9612(01)00284-8.


Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection mainly affects endothelial cells of ocular vessels, optic nerve and the retina, resulting in direct or autoimmune damages, uveoretinitis and disturbed vision. The use of colloidal carriers for the intravitreal delivery of ganciclovir may prolong its residence in the eye, minimizing the opacification observed for macroscopic implants. The aim of this work was to evaluate the ocular toxicity induced by the prolonged presence of ganciclovir-loaded bovine serum albumin nanoparticles after their intravitreal injection. The intraocular disposition of these carriers was also studied by immunochemistry. Two weeks post-injection, a significant amount of nanoparticles remained in the vitreous cavity, mainly in a thin layer overlying the retina and in the area close to the blood aqueoUs barrier. Their prolonged residence in the eve seemed to be well tolerated and the histological evaluation of the retina, mainly the photoreceptor layer, and adjacent tissues revealed the absence of inflammatory reactions or alterations in the tissue architecture (i.e. cellular infiltrations or vascular inflammation). In addition, nanoparticles neither alter the expression and distribution of arrestin and rhodopsin autoantigens nor the mineralocorticoid receptor. In summary, the vision was not affected by autoimmune phenomena or alterations in the behavior of ophthalmic cells due to the intravitreal injection of these nanoparticles.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antiviral Agents / pharmacology
  • Arrestin / metabolism
  • Biocompatible Materials*
  • Biotinylation
  • Female
  • Ganciclovir / pharmacology*
  • Immunochemistry
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Nanotechnology / methods*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Retina / metabolism*
  • Rhodopsin / metabolism
  • Rhodopsin / pharmacology
  • Time Factors


  • Antiviral Agents
  • Arrestin
  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Rhodopsin
  • Ganciclovir