This study evaluated the effects of glucose in human retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells to investigate the cause of diabetic retinal complications. Human RPE cells were cultured in media containing 5.5 mM, 11.0 mM, and 16.5 mM D-glucose. The present study performed proliferation and migration assays, and conducted western blotting for the protein expression, as well as RT-PCR for the mRNA expression, of MMP-2 and -9, and TIMP-1 and -2. The results of the western blotting analysis showed that increasing glucose concentration significantly increased the expression of MMP-2 and -9, but significantly decreased the expression of TIMP-1 and -2. Moreover, the RT-PCR results indicated significant increases in the mRNA expression of MMP-2 and -9, as well as of TIMP-1 and -2, by raising glucose concentration. This study provides fundamental data for future research on the mechanism of retinal complication in diabetic patients.
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