The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of the solid lipid nanoparticles of baicalin (BA-SLNs) on an experimental cataract model and explore the molecular mechanism combined with bioinformatics analysis.
The transparency of lens was observed daily by slit-lamp and photography. Lenticular opacity was graded. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE) was employed to analyze the differential protein expression modes in each group. Proteins of interest were subjected to protein identification by nano-liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC–MS/MS). Bioinformatics analysis was performed using the Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA) online software to comprehend the biological implications of the proteins identified by proteomics.
At the end of the sodium selenite-induced cataract progression, almost all lenses from the model group developed partial nuclear opacity; however, all lenses were clear and normal in the blank group. There was no significant difference between the BA-SLNs group and the blank group. Many protein spots were differently expressed in 2-DE patterns of total proteins of lenses from each group, and 65 highly different protein spots were selected to be identified between the BA-SLNs group and the model group. A total of 23 proteins were identified, and 12 of which were crystalline proteins.
We considered crystalline proteins to play important roles in preserving the normal expression levels of proteins and the transparency of lenses. The general trend in the BA-SLN-treated lenses’ data showed that BA-SLNs regulated the protein expression mode of cataract lenses to normal lenses. Our findings suggest that BA-SLNs may be a potential therapeutic agent in treating cataract by regulating protein expression and may also be a strong candidate for future clinical research.