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Takahiro Nakamura, Kohji Nishida, Atsuyoshi Dota, Masato Matsuki, Kiyofumi Yamanishi, Shigeru Kinoshita; Elevated Expression of Transglutaminase 1 and Keratinization-Related Proteins in Conjunctiva in Severe Ocular Surface Disease. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2001;42(3):549-556.
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purpose. In severe ocular surface diseases, pathologic keratinization of the
ordinarily nonkeratinized corneal and conjunctival mucosal epithelia
results in severe visual loss. The expression in conjunctivalized
corneas of various proteins known to play important roles in the
physiological keratinization process in human epidermis was examined to
better understand the mechanism of keratinization.
methods. Conjunctiva covering the cornea was examined in 12 eyes with ocular
surface disease in the chronic cicatricial phase. These comprised four
Stevens–Johnson syndrome, four ocular cicatricial pemphigoid, and four
chemical injuries. Normal conjunctivas from four age-matched
individuals served as controls. Semiquantitative reverse
transcription–polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was used to
investigate transglutaminase 1 gene expression and immunohistochemistry
to study the expression of transglutaminase 1 protein along with other
keratinization-related proteins (involucrin, loricrin, filaggrin, and
cytokeratins 1 and 10) and cytokeratin pairs 4/13 and 3/12.
results. Semiquantitative RT-PCR showed that transglutaminase 1 mRNA expression
was upregulated in keratinized conjunctiva compared with normal.
Also, in this tissue, immunohistochemistry demonstrated elevated levels
of transglutaminase 1, involucrin, filaggrin, and the cytokeratin pair
1/10. Levels of loricrin and cytokeratin pairs 4/13 and 3/12, however,
remained the same.
conclusions. Various keratinization-related proteins, transglutaminase 1 included,
are most likely involved in the pathogenesis of cicatrizing ocular
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