GPR158 in the Visual System: Homeostatic Role in Regulation of Intraocular Pressure

J Ocul Pharmacol Ther. 2019 May;35(4):203-215. doi: 10.1089/jop.2018.0135. Epub 2019 Mar 18.


Purpose: GPR158 is a newly characterized family C G-protein-coupled receptor, previously identified in functional screens linked with biological stress, including one for susceptibility to ocular hypertension/glaucoma induced by glucocorticoid stress hormones. In this study, we investigated GPR158 function in the visual system. Methods: Gene expression and protein immunolocalization analyses were performed in mouse and human brain and eye to identify tissues where GPR158 might function. Gene expression was perturbed in mice, and in cultures of human trabecular meshwork cells of the aqueous outflow pathway, to investigate function and mechanism. Results:GPR158 is highly expressed in the brain, and in this study, we show prominent expression specifically in the visual center of the cerebral cortex. Expression was also observed in the eye, including photoreceptors, ganglion cells, and trabecular meshwork. Protein was also localized to the outer plexiform layer of the neural retina. Gpr158 deficiency in knockout (KO) mice conferred short-term protection against the intraocular pressure increase that occurred with aging, but this was reversed over time. Most strikingly, the pressure lowering effect of the acute stress hormone, epinephrine, was negated in KO mice. In contrast, no disruption of the electroretinogram was observed. Gene overexpression in cell cultures enhanced cAMP production in response to epinephrine, suggesting a mechanism for intraocular pressure regulation. Overexpression also increased survival of cells subjected to oxidative stress linked to ocular hypertension, associated with TP53 pathway activation. Conclusions: These findings implicate GPR158 as a homeostatic regulator of intraocular pressure and suggest GPR158 could be a pharmacological target for managing ocular hypertension.

Keywords: G-protein-coupled receptor; cAMP; homeostasis; intraocular pressure; retina; trabecular meshwork.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Survival
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Doxycycline / pharmacology
  • Electroretinography
  • Eye / drug effects
  • Eye / metabolism*
  • Homeostasis*
  • Humans
  • Intraocular Pressure*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Rabbits
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / deficiency
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / genetics
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / metabolism*


  • GPR158 protein, human
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled
  • Doxycycline