We have found a complex eye disease in the SJL/N mouse. This animal is closely related to the SJL/J mouse, which is homozygous for retinal degeneration (rd) and which also suffers from extraocular reticulum cell sarcomas at around 200 days of age. In the SJL/N animal, a high incidence of subretinal tumor is present at 9 days after birth. Furthermore, we have observed an extensive neuroretinal hyperplasia, a phenomenon that is termed "hyperplastic neuroretinopathy", and that is probably the consequence of elevated levels of cytokines in the animals. In addition to these anomalies, the SJL/N mouse shows progressive dystrophy of the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) from day 4 onwards, and accelerated photoreceptor cell degeneration is completed by day 16. The early RPE dystrophy appears to be a secondary autoimmune disease, since cells in this structure and in the choroid develop MHC class II antigens, whereas we suspect that the accelerated photoreceptor cell loss is induced by a soluble toxic agent. The F1 progeny derived from cross-breeding the SJL/N and Balb/c +/+ strains also shows a high incidence of subretinal tumor and hyperplastic neuroretinopathy, but neither the RPE dystrophy nor retinal degeneration.

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doi.org/10.1007/BF00318616, hdl.handle.net/1765/62581
Cell and Tissue Research
Department of Neuroscience

Caffé, A.R, Szél, A, Juliusson, B, Hawkins, R.K, & van Veen, T. (1993). Hyperplastic neuroretinopathy and disorder of pigment epithelial cells precede accelerated retinal degeneration in the SJL/N mouse. Cell and Tissue Research, 271(2), 297–307. doi:10.1007/BF00318616