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Vol. 219, No. 5, 2005
Issue release date: September–October 2005
Section title: Original Paper
Ophthalmologica 2005;219:309–315
(DOI:10.1159/000086117)

Attenuation and Delay of Diabetic Cataracts by Antioxidants: Effectiveness of Pyruvate after Onset of Cataract

Varma S.D. · Hegde K.R. · Kovtun S.
Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, School of Medicine, University of Maryland, Baltimore, Md., USA

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Received: 5/13/2005
Published online: 9/1/2005

Number of Print Pages: 7
Number of Figures: 3
Number of Tables: 1

ISSN: 0030-3755 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0267 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/OPH

Abstract

Cataract is one of the most significant vision-impairing complications of diabetes. The present study examined the feasibility of inhibiting cataract formation by treatment with pyruvate, a metabolite known to effectively scavenge reactive species of oxygen and inhibit protein glycation, both known to be involved in the genesis of diabetic cataracts. In addition, pyruvate stimulates tissue metabolism, which is depressed with the onset of cataract formation. The objective of our experiments was to determine if this compound could be effective in offsetting the progress of cataract, specifically if administered after the diabetes-induced lens changes have begun, as opposed to the previous reports wherein it has been reported to delay cataract formation if administered prophylactically with the immediate onset of diabetes. Diabetes was induced by intraperitoneal administration of streptozotocin to mice. Lens transparency was assessed by slit lamp examination and its photography. ATP was determined enzymatically by reacting it with luciferin-luciferase mixture and measuring the fluorescence intensity. The findings described herein are in accordance with this possibility. The incidence of cataract in the group of diabetic animals, where treatment with pyruvate was initiated after the initial lens changes set in, was significantly lower at all times of observation in comparison to the untreated diabetic group. In addition, the severity of opacities in the pyruvate-treated group, when present, was much minor, the transparency of these cases being close to that in the control animals. The ophthalmic findings are supported biochemically by ATP levels, which were significantly higher in the pyruvate group in comparison to the untreated group. The present findings emphasize the clinical usefulness of initiating treatment with anti-oxidants and metabolic agonists even when the lens changes are detected at the time of the diabetes diagnosis. The latter usually comes much later than the onset of visual aberrations. Prophylaxis is not an absolute requirement.


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Received: 5/13/2005
Published online: 9/1/2005

Number of Print Pages: 7
Number of Figures: 3
Number of Tables: 1

ISSN: 0030-3755 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0267 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/OPH


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Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in goverment regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
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