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      Pyruvate Inhibits Galactosemic Changes in Cultured Cat Lens Epithelial Cells


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          An attempt was made to maintain cat lens epithelial cells (CLEC) in culture and study the morphology, growth and survival of these cells in vitro. The influence of incorporation of galactose (30 m M) into the culture medium on the morphology and biochemistry of CLEC in the primary culture was then investigated. To establish the effect of galactose on CLEC, various biochemical parameters associated with galactosemic cataract such as aldose reductase (AR), Na<sup>+</sup>K<sup>+</sup>ATPase, glutathione, polyol and soluble/insoluble proteins were estimated after 24 h of incubation. The effect of pyruvate (5 m M), a ‘physiological antioxidant’, on the changes induced by galactose in CLEC was studied. CLEC in culture showed regular hexagonal cells with prominent nuclei. The CLEC culture attained confluency in 11 days during primary culture and semiconfluency in 14 days in two subsequent passages. Vacuolization and significantly raised AR activity, polyol levels and insoluble protein contents were observed; they had no effect on Na<sup>+</sup>K<sup>+</sup>ATPase and soluble protein after 24 h of incubation in the culture medium with galactose. Supplementation of pyruvate (5 m M) resulted in a lesser number of vacuoles together with a positive modulation of these parameters.

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          A physiological level of ascorbate inhibits galactose cataract in guinea pigs by decreasing polyol accumulation in the lens epithelium: a dehydroascorbate-linked mechanism.

          It was reported previously that dietary ascorbate (ASC) delays the development of galactose-induced cataract in guinea pigs compared to the rate which is observed in ASC-deficient animals. Experiments were conducted to explore the possible mechanism of this phenomenon. Guinea pigs were fed for a period of up to 4 weeks either a normal diet (1 g ASC/kg diet) or a scorbutic diet (< 0.04 g ASC/kg diet) combined with 10% galactose in the drinking water. After 2 weeks, levels of ASC in animals on the scorbutic diet decreased by 95% in the aqueous humor and by 78% in the lens. Slit lamp examination showed that galactose-induced vacuoles in the lens equator formed at a significantly faster rate in the scorbutic animals. However, examination of biochemical parameters in whole lenses of the two groups of animals after 2 weeks showed no significant differences with regard to accumulation of galactose and galactitol, decreases in the levels of myoinositol, taurine and GSH or changes in cation concentrations. In order to examine possible regional changes in the lenses, various parameters were studied in the lens capsule-epithelium. On day 4, the capsule epithelia of scorbutic animals on a galactose diet had a content of galactitol two-and-a-half times higher than that of normal galactose-fed animals. Scorbutic conditions also intensified the loss of Na(+)-K+ ATPase activity in the lens capsule-epithelium caused by galactose feeding. Oxidized glutathione was not detectable in the lens capsule epithelia of any of the animals studied. Hexose monophosphate shunt activity was elevated in lenses of normal galactose-fed animals during the first hour of culture after death whereas lenses of scorbutic galactose-fed animals were not. Consistent with the in vivo findings, galactitol accumulation in dog lens epithelial cells exposed to 30 mM galactose was significantly inhibited by the presence of either ASC or dehydroascorbate (DHA) in the medium. Hexose monophosphate shunt activity in the cells was stimulated to two-and-a-half times its initial level by either 1 mM DHA or 30 mM galactose and slightly more than three-fold by a combination of the two challenges. The results suggest that decreased polyol accumulation in the lens epithelium of the normal galactose-fed guinea pig, which has a high level of ASC in the aqueous humor, accounts for the delay in onset of cataract compared to that for the ASC-deficient animal.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)

            Author and article information

            Ophthalmic Res
            Ophthalmic Research
            S. Karger AG
            February 2002
            07 February 2002
            : 34
            : 1
            : 23-28
            Department of Pharmacology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi, India
            48321 Ophthalmic Res 2002;34:23–28
            © 2002 S. Karger AG, Basel

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            Page count
            Figures: 8, References: 17, Pages: 6
            Original Paper

            Vision sciences,Ophthalmology & Optometry,Pathology
            Cataract,Galactose,Cat lens epithelial cells,Pyruvate,Polyol


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