Navigation Links
Wayne State University researcher examines protein's role in diabetic retinopathy
Date:6/7/2012

DETROIT - A Wayne State University researcher believes a protein that fails to reach the nucleus of retinal cells may play a role in causing eye disease in people with diabetes.

Renu A. Kowluru, Ph.D., professor of ophthalmology, anatomy/cell biology and endocrinology at Wayne State University and the Kresge Eye Institute, recently received a one-year, $110,000 Innovative Grant from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation to help gain new insight into the development of diabetic retinopathy and identify targets for future therapeutic interventions.

Her hypothesis is that NF-E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), a protein that regulates antioxidant response, fails to reach to the nucleus of cells in the retina to neutralize free radicals, which are volatile. As a result, Kowluru said, KEAP1 - the protein that serves as an anchor for Nrf2 and represses its activation - increases, damaging the mitochondria, the cells' power source. That damage, she believes, in turn accelerates the death of cells in tiny blood vessels (capillaries), ultimately resulting in the development of retinopathy.

Diabetes is a leading cause of acquired blindness in young adults. Almost 50 percent of diabetes patients have some form of retinopathy - not necessarily blindness - after nine years, and that figure increases to 95 percent after 20 years of the disease.

"Basically it doesn't leave any diabetic patient," Kowluru said.

Titled "Role of Nrf2-KEAP1 in Diabetic Retinopathy," her project will look at the oxidative stress, an imbalance between the production and utilization of free radicals, in an effort to determine how a disease state - diabetes in this case - causes that imbalance.

"We have shown that in diabetes, mitochondria are damaged, and when they are damaged they initiate cell death," Kowluru said. "We want to see what the role of Nrf2 is in initiating this signal."

Beginning in October, her team will genetically regulate Nrf2 to examine the temporal relationship between the failure of the protein to reach cells' nuclei and the signal sent by damaged mitochondria that triggers cell death. She hopes to determine if the former event precedes the latter, or if they occur at the same time.

Additionally, Kowluru will examine the point on the gene where Nrf2 and KEAP1 interact to determine whether diabetes induces epigenetic changes in Nrf2, impairing its binding with KEAP1.

Because epigenetic changes, which are functionally relevant modifications to the genome that do not involve a change in the DNA sequence, can be passed along to future generations, prevention becomes an even more important goal, she said. Drugs now in the clinical trial stage for other chronic diseases (e.g., cancer) may be able to prevent epigenetic changes in the retina.

"Once we understand the problem, we can administer supplements and prevent the downstream pathway for retinopathy," Kowluru said.


'/>"/>
Contact: Julie O'Connor
julie.oconnor@wayne.edu
313-577-8845
Wayne State University - Office of the Vice President for Research
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Study reveals how cancer drug causes diabetic-like state
2. New drug prevents spread of human prostate cancer cells
3. 2 genetic deletions in human genome linked to the development of aggressive prostate cancer
4. Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy optimal for localized prostate cancer
5. Study examines adverse effects among different radiation therapies for prostate cancer
6. Study Casts Doubt on Value of Pricey Prostate Cancer Therapy
7. Warren Buffett Has Early Stage Prostate Cancer
8. Majority of states fail to address youth exposure to alcohol marketing
9. Genetic abnormalities in benign or malignant tissues predict relapse of prostate cancer
10. PSA screening to detect prostate cancer can be beneficial to younger and at-risk men
11. Mayo Clinic researchers discover biomarkers for prostate cancer detection, recurrence
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2017 , ... An ... green and growing foliage and plants, and along with that; a humdinger of an ... allergy sufferers, it also means an increase in misery-causing grass and weed pollen. ...
(Date:6/24/2017)... ... June 24, 2017 , ... The Pennsylvania Athletic Trainers’ Society’s ... and Erie Convention Center on June 8-10. The weekend consisted of many ... award and scholarship presentations, and professional networking. , On Friday June 9th, ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... ... June 23, 2017 , ... "The Better ... ultimately do significant harm to people with all chronic conditions, including mental illnesses, ... leaves in place the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requirement that insurers cover pre-existing ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... Newburgh, NY (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2017 ... ... board certified plastic surgeon practicing in Newburgh, New York, has recently begun offering ... look. Committed to offering the best cutting-edge procedures and reducing downtime, Dr. Rubinstein ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... ... June 23, 2017 , ... Ensuring meat products have ... highlight the importance of correctly using a meat thermometer. The videos feature University ... research on consumer food safety habits. Dr. Bruhn explains the variety of meat ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/8/2017)... 2017   Responding to Heath Ledger,s father,s ... of singer Chris Cornell in May, the mental ... a free online psychiatric drug side effects ... about psychotropic drug risks. The father of ... an accidental overdose, has called for tighter rules on prescription ...
(Date:6/7/2017)... Endo International plc (NASDAQ: ENDP ) today ... R. Goodwin , U.S. District Court Judge for the ... entered a case management order in MDL 2325, American ... (the "MDL") that includes a provision requiring plaintiffs in ... specific causation within one hundred twenty (120) days of ...
(Date:6/7/2017)...  Diplomat Specialty Infusion Group, a brand of Diplomat Pharmacy, Inc. ... Iowa location. The Iowa ... an ISO 7 cleanroom—the standard needed to compound intravenous (IV) nutrition ... of pollutants. "Our new cleanroom ... serve our Iowa patients," said Phil ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: