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J Dawczynski, S Franke, M Blum, G Stein, J Strobel; Metallothioneine (MT) in Human Cataractous Lenses and Lens Capsules . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2002;43(13):3593.
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Purpose: Metallothioneins are important proteins for toxic metal binding and free radical scavening. The focus of this study was to examine the role of metallothioneine in the pathogenesis of ctararact formation. Methods: 28 lenses and lens capsules of patients with catararct (12 diabetic, 16 non-diabetic) where compared with a group of five clear lenses. The immunohistochemical localisation of metallothioneine was performed with an anti-MT monoclonal antibody, recognizing MT-1 and MT-2. Results: In all 28 cataractous lenses a legible metallothioneine immunreactivity was found in the epithelial cells of lenses. In contrast to this only a very slight immunreactivity was found in the lenses and lens capsules of the control group. Alltogether, diabetic patients showed a stronger immunoreactivity compared to non-diabetics. Conclusion: This study show that MT is present in human lens epithelial cells. The accumulation of MT in cataractous and diabetic lenses may indicate a possible importance of MT in the complex process of lens opacification.
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