The effects of myristyl γ-picolinium chloride on the rabbit retina: Morphologic observations

E. Zemel*, A. Loewenstein, M. Lazar, I. Perlman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose. This study was designed to localize the site of action of myristyl γ-picolinium chloride (MGP) in the rabbit retina and to evaluate the extent of the structural damage induced by the drug. Methods. The structural damage was assessed at the light microscopic level in eyes treated with various concentrations of MGP at different time intervals after intravitreal injection of the drug. Glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) immunoreactivity was tested in the same eyes and served as an index of retinal damage. Results. The rabbit retinas, examined about 1 mo after MGP injection, exhibited loss of photoreceptors and thinning of the retina in the regions close to the site of injection; remote retinal areas appeared morphologically intact or only slightly affected. Immunocytochemical analysis demonstrated the presence of GFAP in Muller (glial) cells throughout the entire retina. When the effects of MGP were examined at short time intervals (24 and 72 hr) after injection, severe morphologic damage in areas adjacent to the site of drug injection developed in parallel with the electroretinographic findings. However, GFAP could not be demonstrated. Conclusions. MGP, the preservative used in Depo-Medrol (Upjohn, Kalamazoo, MI), is highly toxic to the rabbit retina.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2360-2366
Number of pages7
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Muller cells
  • electroretinogram
  • glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)
  • myristyl γ-picolinium
  • retina


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