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V. Zanon-Moreno, J. J. Garcia-Medina, M. A. Moreno-Nadal, I. Vinuesa-Silva, M. D. Pinazo-Duran; Cell Death Markers in Primary Open-Angle Glaucoma. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2009;50(13):3630.
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Glaucoma is a group of diseases in which optic nerve is damaged and lead to bilateral blindness. It is known that retinal ganglion cells in primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) death by apoptosis. Poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase-1 (PARP-1) has a role in DNA damage repair, but PARP-1 could be cleaved by caspase-3 so that prevents the repair of DNA and facilitates the initiation of apoptosis. Other proteins protect cells from apoptosis. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a protein that promotes the survival of ganglion cells by inhibiting apoptosis and increasing axonal elongation. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) also inhibits apoptosis by means the induction of anti-apoptotic proteins (e.g. Bcl-2). The aim of this study is to evaluate if these pro-apoptotic and anti-apoptotic proteins could be useful as a markers of cell death in POAG.
A case-control study was performed in 41 patients with POAG and 50 patients with non-pathological cataracts. A sample of aqueous humor from each subject was obtained at the beginning of the surgical procedures. BDNF and VEGF levels were determined using a commercial EIA kit from R&D Systems. The expression of caspase-3 and PARP-1 was carried out by Western blot. Data were processed for Statistical Analysis using the SPSS v.15.0 (SPSS Inc., Chicago, IL, USA)
BDNF and VEGF levels were statistically significant lower in POAG group than in cataracts group ([BDNF: 98,1 ± 8,2 pg/mL in POAG and 111,3 ± 11,6 pg/mL in cataracts; p=0.0008]; [VEGF: 65,2 ± 5,5 pg/mL in POAG and 76,9 ± 9,8 pg/mL in cataracts; p=0.0003]). Expression of caspase-3 and PARP-1 were statistically higher in POAG group than in cataracts group ([PARP-1 85kDa: 58,7 ± 7,5 DU in POAG and 19,2 ± 3,2 DU in cataracts; p=0.001]; [PARP-1 24kDa: 44,2 ± 6,5 DU in POAG and 6,6 ± 3,1 DU in cataracts; p=0.013]; [Caspase-3: 76,1 ± 7,4 DU in POAG and 68,3 ± 8,6 DU in cataracts; p=0.018])
These proteins may be used as a marker of neuronal damage and could help us to prevent the glaucomatous blindness.
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