Light-emitting-diode induced retinal damage and its wavelength dependency in vivo
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Chang-Hao Yang. Department of Ophthalmology, National Taiwan University Hospital, No.7, Chung-Shan South Rd., Taipei 10051, Taiwan, China.


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Supported by Taiwan Ministry of Science and Technology grant (No.NSC 103-2314-B-002-076-MY3).

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    AIM: To examine light-emitting-diode (LED)-induced retinal neuronal cell damage and its wavelength-driven pathogenic mechanisms. METHODS: Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed to blue LEDs (460 nm), green LEDs (530 nm), and red LEDs (620 nm). Electroretinography (ERG), Hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL), and immunohistochemical (IHC) staining, Western blotting (WB) and the detection of superoxide anion (O2-·), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), total iron, and ferric (Fe3+) levels were applied. RESULTS: ERG results showed the blue LED group induced more functional damage than that of green or red LED groups. H&E staining, TUNEL, IHC, and TEM revealed apoptosis and necrosis of photoreceptors and RPE, which indicated blue LED also induced more photochemical injury. Free radical production and iron-related molecular marker expressions demonstrated that oxidative stress and iron-overload were associated with retinal injury. WB assays correspondingly showed that defense gene expression was up-regulated after the LED light exposure with a wavelength dependency. CONCLUSION: The study results indicate that LED blue-light exposure poses a great risk of retinal injury in awake, task-oriented rod-dominant animals. The wavelength-dependent effect should be considered carefully when switching to LED lighting applications.

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Yu-Man Shang, Gen-Shuh Wang, David H. Sliney, et al. Light-emitting-diode induced retinal damage and its wavelength dependency in vivo. Int J Ophthalmol, 2017,10(2):191-202

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  • Received:July 25,2016
  • Revised:October 21,2016
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  • Online: February 10,2017
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