CHAPTER 6: Modulation of cGMP-signalling to Prevent Retinal Degeneration
Published:13 Sep 2018
V. Marigo, P. Ekström, F. Schwede, A. Rentsch, and F. Paquet-Durand, in Therapies for Retinal Degeneration: Targeting Common Processes, ed. E. J. de la Rosa and T. G. Cotter, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2018, pp. 88-98.
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In the photoreceptors of the retina, the second-messenger molecule cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) occupies centre stage in the phototransduction cascade. Remarkably, cGMP is also involved in hereditary photoreceptor degeneration caused by a variety of different genetic insults. This provides an entry point for the development of inhibitory cGMP analogues for a mutation-independent treatment. Here, we outline how cGMP signalling can be targeted for the treatment of retinal degeneration, how inhibitory cGMP analogues may be designed and formulated, and how test systems of rising complexity can be used to identify new compounds with photoreceptor neuroprotective properties. In this context, we cite the European Union-funded DRUGSFORD project and provide an example for the efficacy of a specific cGMP analogue to prevent photoreceptor loss and preserve retinal function.