Endothelium integrity is important for the normal functioning of vessels, the disruption of which can lead to disease. The blood-retinal barrier required for normal retinal function is compromised in diabetic retinopathy, causing retinal vascular leakage. Previously, we demonstrated the ability of Sac-0601[((2R,3S)-3-acetoxy-6-((3S,10R,13R,17R)-10,13-dimethyl-17-((R) -6-methylheptan-2-yl)-2,3,4,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17-tetradecahydro-1H- cyclopenta[a]phenanthren-3-yloxy)-3,6-dihydro-2H-pyran-2-yl)methyl acetate], a pseudo-sugar derivative of cholesterol, to increase survival of retinal endothelial cells. In the present study, we evaluated the ability of Sac-0601 to prevent retinal vascular leakages in vitro and in vivo. Sac-0601 treatment blocked VEGF-induced formation of actin stress fibers and stabilized the cortical actin ring in retinal endothelial cells. It also inhibited degradation of occludin, an important tight junction protein, and blocked VEGF-induced disruption of its linear pattern at the cell border. The [14C] sucrose permeability assay demonstrated that Sac-0601 was able to prevent VEGF-induced retinal endothelial permeability. The compound inhibited the vascular leakage in retina of mice intravitreally injected with VEGF. And it also significantly reduced the leakage in retina of diabetic retinopathy mice model. Taken together, our findings suggest the potential therapeutic usefulness of Sac-0601 for retinal vascular permeability diseases.
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