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Year : 1981  |  Volume : 29  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 321-323

Reduced glutathione levels in human normal and cataractous lens

Dept, of Biochemistry and Ophthalmology, Medical College, Amritsar, India

Correspondence Address:
Kartar Singh
Dept, of Biochemistry, Medical College, Amritsar
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 7346451

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How to cite this article:
Singh K, Chadha M R, Bhatia A. Reduced glutathione levels in human normal and cataractous lens. Indian J Ophthalmol 1981;29:321-3

How to cite this URL:
Singh K, Chadha M R, Bhatia A. Reduced glutathione levels in human normal and cataractous lens. Indian J Ophthalmol [serial online] 1981 [cited 2021 Jun 17];29:321-3. Available from: https://www.ijo.in/text.asp?1981/29/4/321/30923

Table 2

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Table 2

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Table 1

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Table 1

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In order to establish the role of reduced glutathione levels in cataract formation this study was planned to estimate the levels of reduced glutathione in normal and varieties of, senile cataractous lenses.

  Materials and methods Top

Lenses were taken from 80 patients admi­tted in the Ram Lal Eye and E.N.T. Hospital, Amritsar. These lenses were in various stages of cataract formation. These lenses were divided into four groups. Out of these four groups, 3 groups comprised of senile cataract at various stages of maturity i.e. immature, mature and hypermature cataract. The fourth group was of patients with catarac­tous lenses but in age group of less than 40 years. This group was irrespective of the stage of maturity in the lens. Each group was comprising of 20 lenses. Intra capsular extraction was done in all cases and in younger group of patients. Zonulysin was used in order to enable successful intra-ocular extrac­tion. Lenses were carried from the operation theatre to the biochemistry laboratory in ice cooled vials. Normal lenses, 20 in number were taken from the autopsy room and analy­sed as control. All lenses were examined afresh.

Each lens was weighed separately. The homogenate was prepared in 0.9% sodium chloride solution. The volume of saline used was dependent on the weight of lens. 1 ml of normal saline for a lens weight of 100 mg. Thus homogenate was centrifuged at 4000 r.p.m. for 10 minutes. One ml. of the super­natant which was milky white in cataractous lens and clear turbid in normal lenses, was used for further analysis. The separated crust of insoluble products which settled below was discarded.

The estimation of reduced glutathione was done by the method described by Prins and Loss (1969). This method is both simple and has a high degree of accuracy.

  Observations Top

It is clearly seen from [Table - 1] that there is a gradual increase in the wet weight of the lens with age. The increase in wet weight is however significant only upto the age of 40 years. The increase is all the more evident with cataract formation and the hypermature group of lenses show a definitely higher wet weight than normal lenses.

In this study the mean wet weight of nor­mal lenses between 40-59 years was 211 mg and the mean wet weight of cataractous lenses was 220 mg.

[Table - 2] shows the data obtained on analy­sis of reduced glutathione in the same lenses stated above. The level of reduced glutathione in normal lenses gives a mean of 169.10 µg. 100 mg which is reduced to a mean of 85.90 µg/100 mg in immature cataractous lenses and further reduced to a mean of 26.22 µg/100 mg in mature lenses. The level shows a marked decrease to the mean value of 13.8µg/100 mg. in hypermature cataractous lenses. It is, therefore, evident that reduced glutathione is decreased in all types of cataract formation. This reduction is clearly evident even in younger age group of patients with cataract. These patients of less than 40 years with cata­ract show a mean value for reduced gluta­thione at 37.50 µg/100 mg as compared to the 169.10 µg/100 mg mean value of normal lenses.

  Discussion Top

Reduced glutathione in normal and cata­ractous lenses has been studied by various workers. The data of present study indicate that the levels of reduced glutathione show a definite decrease with advancing age and cataract formation.

Even with early changes of cataract forma­tion, both cortical and neuclear the reduced glutathione shows falling levels. The levels of reduced glutathione in lenses below the age of 40 years also shows a significant fall. This fall corresponds with the maturity of cataract.

Mechanism of decrease in reduced glutathi­ one levels in various types of cataract forma­tion is not yet clearly understood. Obvious reason would be either a decrease in its synthesis or increased degradation of this tripeptide. Another postulation is the conversion of reduced glutathione into its oxidized form.

  Summary Top

Reduced glutathione levels of the normal and cataractous lenses has been studied.


  [Table - 1], [Table - 2]


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