Navigation Links
How our vision dims: Chemists crack the code of cataract creation
Date:12/5/2013

Irvine, Calif., Dec. 5, 2013 Groundbreaking new findings by UC Irvine and German chemists about how cataracts form could be used to help prevent the world's leading cause of blindness, which currently affects nearly 20 million people worldwide.

"That's the dream, and this is a big step," said Rachel Martin, UC Irvine associate professor of chemistry and co-author of a paper featured on the December cover of the journal Structure. "Understanding the molecular mechanism of what goes wrong in the eye that leads to a cataract could lead to the development of better treatment options, including more sophisticated artificial lenses and drugs."

It has long been known that human eyes have a powerful ability to focus because of three kinds of crystallin proteins in their lenses, maintaining transparency via a delicate balance of both repelling and attracting light. Two types of crystallin are structural, but the third dubbed a "chaperone" keeps the others from clumping into cataracts if they're modified by genetic mutation, ultraviolet light or chemical damage.

The UC Irvine team painstakingly explored and identified the structures of the normal proteins and a genetic mutation known to cause cataracts in young children. They found that the chaperone proteins bind far more strongly to the mutated proteins in an effort to keep the lens clear. One major problem: Every human eye contains a finite number of the helpful proteins. Once they're used up, the researchers learned, weakened ones quickly begin to aggregate and form blinding cataracts.

Now that this mechanism has been mapped at the molecular level, the team is hopeful that organic chemists can create sight-saving treatments to prevent such aggregation.

While people with adequate medical care can have corrective surgery for cataracts, the World Health Organization has found that millions suffer major vision loss because they do not have access to laser surgery or other options. By 2019, the number of people older than 50 with impaired sight is expected to grow even higher, particularly in China, India, Southeast Asia and Eastern Mediterranean nations.


'/>"/>

Contact: Janet Wilson
janethw@uci.edu
949-824-3969
University of California - Irvine
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Generation Next Film/Television, Journalism and Social Media Competition Deadline Extended to December 13, 2013
2. PowerSteering Recognized as a “Visionary” for Third Straight Year in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Integrated IT Portfolio Analysis Applications
3. Bilateral Biomet Hip Implants Cause Maryland Man Severe Pain, Elevated Metal Ion Levels, and Revision Surgeries, Alleges Lawsuit Filed by Parker Waichman LLP
4. Katie Johnson and Others Spoke About the Role of Children's Vision in Learning and Development at the 37th Annual WAEYC Fall Conference in Seatac, Washington in November
5. Horizon Healthcare, Inc. of Wisconsin Undertakes Bond Offering for its American Telehealthcare Division
6. Sam Rizk, MD, FACS, Top Revision Rhinoplasty Surgeon in Manhattan
7. Garden City Optometrist Dr. Steven Schoenbart Celebrates 25 Years in the Public Eye and the Treatment of Low Vision Patients
8. Global Vision Enters the Russian Market
9. NewsWatch Recently Featured the “Air Ace” Mobile Game Application on National Television
10. NewsWatch Airing on National Television, Thursday, November 21st
11. For many older adults, vision prescription differs between eyes
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... 05, 2016 , ... Dr. Justin Scott and Dr. Lydia Muccioli of ... Day to individuals in need. The event is scheduled to take place on February ... is to provide dental care to community members in need. Each patient will be ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... February 05, 2016 , ... Dr. Ben Amini, ... it is now welcoming orthodontist, Dr. Amanda Cheng, to the practice. With the ... oral health care, including general dentistry, cosmetic treatments, periodontics, implant dentistry , ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... February 05, 2016 , ... In sleep, when the defenses of the day ... feature of patients with eating disorders is significant self-criticism, and consequently these patients experience ... are regarded as maladaptive means for coping with this unease, but also leads to ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... 2016 , ... California Mobile Kitchens , a company ... latest mobile kitchen model, featuring customizable stainless steel interiors and a new, 26-foot ... use anywhere in the U.S. Many of their units can be seen at ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... ... Calls Blacklist has just been updated by mobile app developer Vlad Lee. The ... known bugs within the app. Calls Blacklist allows its users to only have to ... their device’s battery power or memory. It provides a powerful call blocker that is ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/5/2016)... , February 5, 2016 ... Market Research report states that the global active pharmaceuticals ... and is predicted to reach US$185.9 bn by 2020. ... 6.50% from 2014 to 2020. The title of the ... Captive/Contract Manufactured, by Geography, and by Therapeutic Area) - ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... England , February 5, 2016 ... --> Today, VoicePower Ltd - The Speech Recognition People, announced ... been deployed to improve patient care, reduce turnaround times and to ... Wirral CCG ,- VoicePower client since 2013 Challenge: ... Challenge: --> - Six doctors ,- Wirral CCG ...
(Date:2/4/2016)... , Feb. 4, 2016  The Senior Care ... Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz ... holding today,s hearing , "Developments in the ... increases and growing questions about abusive pharmacy benefit ... (R-UT) and Ranking Member Elijah Cummings (D-MD) ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: