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PPAR Research
Volume 2008, Article ID 679237, 4 pages
Review Article

Role of Peoxisome Proliferator Activator Receptor 𝛾 on Blood Retinal Barrier Breakdown

Department of Ophthalmology, School of Medicine, University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8655, Japan

Received 24 May 2007; Accepted 10 July 2007

Academic Editor: Suofu Qin

Copyright © 2008 Yasuo Yanagi. 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.


The retinal vessels have two barriers: the retinal pigment epithelium and the retinal vascular endothelium. Each barrier exhibits increased permeability under various pathological conditions. This condition is referred to as blood retinal barrier (BRB) breakdown. Clinically, the most frequently encountered condition causing BRB breakdown is diabetic retinopathy. In recent studies, inflammation has been linked to BRB breakdown and vascular leakage in diabetic retinopathy. Biological support for the role of inflammation in early diabetes is the adhesion of leukocytes to the retinal vasculature (leukostasis) observed in diabetic retinopathy. P P A R 𝛾 is a member of a ligand-activated nuclear receptor superfamily and plays a critical role in a variety of biological processes, including adipogenesis, glucose metabolism, angiogenesis, and inflammation. There is now strong experimental evidence to support the theory that P P A R 𝛾 inhibits diabetes-induced retinal leukostasis and leakage, playing an important role in the pathogenesis of diabetic retinopathy. Therapeutic targeting of P P A R 𝛾 may be beneficial to diabetic retinopathy.