Amelioration of photic injury in rat retina by ascorbic acid: a histopathologic study

Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 1985 Nov;26(11):1589-98.


It has been postulated that ascorbic acid may help to protect the retina from oxidative insult by light. To confirm this hypothesis, the authors compared light-damaged retinas of rats with or without ascorbate supplement by morphologic and morphometric studies at different time periods after light exposure. No dramatic morphologic differences were observed in the photoreceptor-retinal pigment epithelium complex between the two groups six hr after light exposure to 200 to 250-foot candles of visible light. Six to 13 days after 24 hr of exposure, the retina of rats that received ascorbate supplement showed significantly less severe damage than the retina of unsupplemented rats. The superior and temporal quadrants of the retina appeared to be most susceptible to the light damage when comparing rats with or without ascorbate supplement. These findings suggested that ascorbate ameliorates the photic injury in rat retina.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Ascorbic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Light / adverse effects*
  • Lipid Peroxides / metabolism
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Photoreceptor Cells / ultrastructure
  • Pigment Epithelium of Eye / ultrastructure*
  • Rats
  • Retina / pathology
  • Retina / radiation effects*
  • Rod Cell Outer Segment / ultrastructure


  • Lipid Peroxides
  • Ascorbic Acid