Comparative effects of early postnatal ibuprofen and indomethacin on VEGF, IGF-I, and GH during rat ocular development

Kay D.A. Beharry, Houchang D. Modanlou, Jamal Hasan, Zahra Gharraee, Patricia Abad-Santos, Jeremy H. Sills, Amanda Jan, Stephen Nageotte, Jacob V. Aranda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


PURPOSE. Ibuprofen and indomethacin are nonselective prostaglandin synthetase inhibitors that have been shown to improve oxygen-induced retinopathy in mice. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I, and growth hormone (GH) are potent growth factors involved in retinal development. This study was conducted to examine and compare the effects of early postnatal ibuprofen and indomethacin on ocular and systemic VEGF, IGF-I, and GH during rat ocular development. METHODS. Newborn rats were treated with intraperitoneal injections of low and high doses of ibuprofen or indomethacin at birth (postnatal day [P]1) and on P2 and P3. A control group received equivalent volumes of saline. At P14, vitreous fluid, retinal homogenates, and serum were analyzed for VEGF, IGF-I, and GH protein levels. Retinal mRNA expression of VEGF splice variants (VEGF188, VEGF164, VEGF120), VEGF receptors (VEGFR-1, VEGFR-2, Npn-1, Npn-2), and pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF) were also examined. RESULTS. Animals treated with high-dose ibuprofen had significantly lower somatic growth and higher serum and vitreous IGF-I levels. High-dose ibuprofen decreased retinal VEGF levels and retinal VEGF164, VEGF120, and VEGFR-2 transcripts, resulting in a significant increase in the cecal period in 87% of rats at P14. Both indomethacin doses suppressed retinal VEGF164 transcripts without affecting VEGF receptors. CONCLUSIONS. Ibuprofen may be more effective than indomethacin for suppression of retinal VEGF signaling, suggesting a possible therapy for retinal neovascularization. However, deficits in somatic growth concurrent with higher systemic IGF-I levels suggests decreased IGF-I bioactivity. These adverse effects should be considered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3036-3043
Number of pages8
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2006


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