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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2015, Article ID 673090, 15 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/673090
Review Article

Contribution of Microglia-Mediated Neuroinflammation to Retinal Degenerative Diseases

1Centre of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences, IBILI, Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, Azinhaga de Santa Comba, 3004-548 Coimbra, Portugal
2Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
3Department of Life Sciences, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
4AIBILI, Coimbra, Portugal

Received 5 November 2014; Accepted 16 December 2014

Academic Editor: Kiyoshi Matsumura

Copyright © 2015 Maria H. Madeira 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.

Abstract

Retinal degenerative diseases are major causes of vision loss and blindness worldwide and are characterized by chronic and progressive neuronal loss. One common feature of retinal degenerative diseases and brain neurodegenerative diseases is chronic neuroinflammation. There is growing evidence that retinal microglia, as in the brain, become activated in the course of retinal degenerative diseases, having a pivotal role in the initiation and propagation of the neurodegenerative process. A better understanding of the events elicited and mediated by retinal microglia will contribute to the clarification of disease etiology and might open new avenues for potential therapeutic interventions. This review aims at giving an overview of the roles of microglia-mediated neuroinflammation in major retinal degenerative diseases like glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy.