Exposure to subthreshold dose of UVR-B induces apoptosis in the lens epithelial cells and does not in the lens cortical fibre cells

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Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this study was to investigate in which part of the lens in vivo exposure to subthreshold dose of UVR-B radiation induces apoptosis.

Methods

Twenty 6-week-old female albino Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed to subthreshold dose (1 kJ/m2) of UVR-B unilaterally and killed at 120 hr after exposure. Lenses were enucleated and dissected on three regions: the lens epithelium, the cortex and the nucleus. The lens nucleus then was removed. Apoptosis markers p53 and caspase 3 were used to study apoptosis in the lens regions. qRT-PCR and Western blot were utilized to analyse the lenses.

Results

TP53 and CASP3 mRNA expressions are increased in exposed lenses, both in the lens epithelium and in the cortex regions, in relation to non-exposed lenses. Expression of p53 protein is increased in exposed lens epithelium in relation to non-exposed lens epithelium. Caspase 3 protein is expressed in exposed lens epithelial cells, while it is not expressed in non-exposed lens epithelial cells. p53 and caspase 3 proteins are not expressed in either exposed nor non-exposed lens fibre cells.

Conclusion

Exposure to UVR-B increases mRNA transcription of apoptosis marker p53 in vivo in both regions of the lens and of apoptosis marker caspase 3 in the lens cortex. Exposure to UVR-B increases p53 and caspase 3 proteins expression just in the lens epithelium. In vivo exposure to subthreshold dose of UVR-B induces apoptosis in the lens epithelial cells and does not in the lens fibre cells.

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