About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Eyes may Now be Immune to Cataract

by Dr. Enozia Vakil on October 27, 2013 at 10:16 PM
Font : A-A+

 Eyes may Now be Immune to Cataract

Cataract may now be prevented by detecting the activation mechanism of a protective protein that prevents diseases of the human eye, thanks to researchers.

The lens of the human eye is made up of a highly concentrated protein solution that imparts the eye its high refractive power. Yet, despite this high protein content the ocular lens must remain clear and transparent.

Advertisement

To this end ocular lens cells have developed a remarkable strategy: They have thrown overboard the complex machinery present in all other cells of the human body for building up and breaking down proteins. Instead, lens proteins are created only once in a lifetime - during embryonic development.

In 2009, Johannes Buchner, professor for biotechnology at the Technische Universitaet Muenchen collaborated with Sevil Weinkauf, professor for electron microscopy at the Technische Universitaet Muenchen, and helped the first part of the aB-crystallin puzzle fall into place.
Advertisement

The team successfully deciphered the molecular structure of the most important form of this versatile protein - a molecule comprising 24 subunits. Under normal conditions, i.e. when the cell is not exposed to stress, this complex is the most common variant.

However, it is merely an idle form that contributes little to the prevention of clumping in other proteins. It was clear that there must be another molecular switch that triggers the protective protein.

It is this trigger mechanism that the team headed by Buchner and Weinkauf uncovered now. When a cell is exposed to stress, for instance when subjected to heat, phosphate groups are attached to a specific region of the protein.

The negative charges of these phosphates break the links between the subunits and the large complexes consequently disintegrate into numerous smaller ones of only six or twelve subunits each.

As a result of this breakup, the regions at the ends of the complexes become more flexible allowing the molecules to dock up with different partners, thereby preventing them from clumping - the protective protein is now active.

The study has been published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Source: ANI
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2021 - It's time to RISE
First-Ever Successful Pig-To-Human Kidney Transplantation
World Osteoporosis Day 2021 -
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Cataract Cataract in Detail Nervous Tic Eye Vision Blindness Facts Myasthenia Gravis Double Vision Clear the Blur-Tips to Boost Your Eye-Q Floppy Iris Syndrome 

Recommended Reading
Scientists Explore Link Between Cataract Surgery and Longer Life
A recent study finds that people who have had cataract surgery live longer than those who choose ......
Cataract may Occur in Children Too, Say Doctors
Cataract might strike kids and require a far more complicated treatment, say doctors....
Cataract
A cataract is cloudiness in the crystalline lens of the eye that results in a gradually progressive ...
Cataract in Detail
Encyclopedia section of medindia gives general info about Cataract...
Clear the Blur-Tips to Boost Your Eye-Q
Eye problems may present as blurry vision or simply a minor headache, but they can affect your life ...
Double Vision
Diplopia or double vision is a type of visual impairment in which two images of the same object are ...
Floppy Iris Syndrome
Floppy iris syndrome is associated with a high risk of complications following cataract surgery....
Myasthenia Gravis
Myasthenia gravis is the commonest disorder of neuromuscular transmission. Autoimmune myasthenia gra...
Nervous Tic
Trigeminal Neuralgia or tic douloureux is one of the most painful nervous system disorders that affe...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use