Vasoproliferative activity has been demonstrated in extracts of retinas from human, bovine, and feline sources. These retinal extracts are capable of stimulating (a) proliferation and thymidine uptake of bovine vascular endothelial cells in culture and (b) neovascularization on the chick chorioallantoic membrane. Extracts of skeletal muscle, cardiac muscle, and liver lack similar stimulatory activity. The activity is nondialyzable, stable at 56 degrees C, and inactivated at 100 degrees C. Retinal extracts stimulate the proliferation of corneal fibroblasts but have no effect on the proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells. Indirect evidence suggests the liberation of a vasoproliferative factor from retina in several ocular disorders. The data in this report represent the first direct demonstration of vasoproliferative activity from mammalian retina.

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