Taurine-Induced Regeneration of Goldfish Retina in Culture May Involve a Calcium-Mediated Mechanism


Address correspondence and reprint requests to Dr. L. Lima at Laboratorio de Neuroquímica, IVIC, Apdo. 21827, Caracas 1020–A, Venezuela.


Abstract: A possible mechanism of action of taurine as a trophic substance was studied in goldfish retina by investigating the effect of extracellular and intracellular calcium chelators on in vitro outgrowth, and the effect of taurine on calcium influx into postcrush retinal cells in culture. The amino acid stimulated the outgrowth from goldfish retinal explants, an effect that was blocked by EGTA and 1,2-bis (oaminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid methyl ester (BAPTA). The influx of calcium into cultured cells from postcrush retina was increased by taurine by day 5 in culture, but not by day 10, supporting previous results indicating a critical period in which taurine stimulates out-growth. The present results suggest that taurine partially exerts its regenerative effect on postcrush retinal explants by increasing calcium influx.