A Mouse Model for Laser-induced Choroidal Neovascularization

J Vis Exp. 2015 Dec 27;(106):e53502. doi: 10.3791/53502.

Abstract

The mouse laser-induced choroidal neovascularization (CNV) model has been a crucial mainstay model for neovascular age-related macular degeneration (AMD) research. By administering targeted laser injury to the RPE and Bruch's membrane, the procedure induces angiogenesis, modeling the hallmark pathology observed in neovascular AMD. First developed in non-human primates, the laser-induced CNV model has come to be implemented into many other species, the most recent of which being the mouse. Mouse experiments are advantageously more cost-effective, experiments can be executed on a much faster timeline, and they allow the use of various transgenic models. The miniature size of the mouse eye, however, poses a particular challenge when performing the procedure. Manipulation of the eye to visualize the retina requires practice of fine dexterity skills as well as simultaneous hand-eye-foot coordination to operate the laser. However, once mastered, the model can be applied to study many aspects of neovascular AMD such as molecular mechanisms, the effect of genetic manipulations, and drug treatment effects. The laser-induced CNV model, though useful, is not a perfect model of the disease. The wild-type mouse eye is otherwise healthy, and the chorio-retinal environment does not mimic the pathologic changes in human AMD. Furthermore, injury-induced angiogenesis does not reflect the same pathways as angiogenesis occurring in an age-related and chronic disease state as in AMD. Despite its shortcomings, the laser-induced CNV model is one of the best methods currently available to study the debilitating pathology of neovascular AMD. Its implementation has led to a deeper understanding of the pathogenesis of AMD, as well as contributing to the development of many of the AMD therapies currently available.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Video-Audio Media

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bruch Membrane / pathology
  • Choroidal Neovascularization / pathology*
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Lasers
  • Macular Degeneration / pathology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Retina / pathology