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Journal of Diabetes Research
Volume 2013, Article ID 245271, 8 pages
Research Article

Ethyl Pyruvate Inhibits Retinal Pathogenic Neovascularization by Downregulating HMGB1 Expression

Korean Medicine Based Herbal Drug Development Group, Herbal Medicine Research Division, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine (KIOM), 1672 Yuseongdaero, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-811, Republic of Korea

Received 26 July 2013; Revised 18 October 2013; Accepted 8 November 2013

Academic Editor: Ronald G. Tilton

Copyright © 2013 Yun Mi Lee et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Retinal pathogenic angiogenesis in the eyes is a causative factor in retinopathy of prematurity, diabetic retinopathy, and age-related macular degeneration. This study was designed to examine the pathogenic role of the high-mobility group box-1 (HMGB1) protein and the inhibitory effect of ethyl pyruvate (EP), a well-known antioxidant substance, in retinal pathogenic angiogenesis in mice with oxygen-induced retinopathy (OIR), one of the animal models of proliferative ischemic retinopathy. The OIR mouse model was used for our in vivo studies. The mice were exposed to 75% oxygen from postnatal day 7 (P7) to P11, after which the mice were brought to room air and intraperitoneally injected with EP (50 mg/kg, or 100 mg/kg) for five days. At P17, the mice were perfused with fluorescein isothiocyanate-dextran, and flat-mounted retinas were used to measure nonperfused and neovascular tufts. In OIR mice, an intraperitoneal injection of EP reduced the nonperfused retinal area in the treatment group and significantly reduced the retinal neovascular tufts. In addition, EP inhibited the overexpression of HMGB1 in the retinas of OIR mice. These data suggest that EP could serve as an innovative pharmaceutical agent to prevent retinal neovascularization through inhibiting HMGB1 expression.