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Inhibiting Inflammation Blocks Retinal Death in Animal Models of an Untreatable...

New research from the University of Virginia School of Medicine uncovers a pathological mechanism underlying the degeneration of the retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE) in Geographic Atrophy, an advanced stage of Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD). Toxicity induced by complementary DNA of Alu RNA had been implicated in the degeneration of RPE but the mechanism had been unclear. The new study shows Alu cDNA engages the DNA sensor cGAS to induce cytosolic mitochondrial DNA escape, which amplifies cGAS activation, triggering the activation of the inflammasome and RPE degeneration.