Identifying the molecular causes of vision loss in demyelinating disease

Demyelinating diseases, such as multiple sclerosis (MS), are frequently associated with the progressive loss of vision. The retinal nerve damage is thought to be caused by immune system-mediated inflammation; however, other demyelinating disorders, such as Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease, do not involve the immune system, suggesting that there are other causes of retinal nerve damage.

Deimination is a protein modification that is altered in patients with MS and PMD. In this issue of the , researchers led by Sanjoy Bhattacharya at the University of Miami investigated the role of deimination in retinal in a mouse model of demyelinating disease (ND4 mice).

They found that deimination was reduced in patients with demyelinating diseases and in ND4 mice that exhibited vision loss. Decreases in deamination could be detected in the mice prior to the onset of other symptoms.

Bhattacharya and colleagues found that they could improve visual function in ND4 mice by restoring deimination. These results demonstrate that loss of deimination underlies nerve damage in and may be a suitable target for therapeutic intervention.

More information: Deimination restores inner retinal visual function in murine demyelinating disease, Journal of Clinical Investigation, doi:10.1172/JCI64811

Related Stories

Novel mouse model of demyelinating disorder

date Jan 14, 2010

In the February 1st issue of G&D, Dr. Brian Popko (The University of Chicago) and colleagues describe how mutation of a gene called ZFP191 leads to disordered CNS myelination in mice -- reminiscent of what is seen in human ...

Anti-HIV drugs reduce the cause of some forms of vision loss

date May 23, 2008

A potential new therapeutic use for anti-HIV drugs known as protease inhibitors has been suggested by a team of researchers from Harvard Medical School, Boston, and Inserm U848, France, as a result of their work in a mouse ...

Recommended for you

Carnival game mimics eye growth

date Mar 26, 2015

The motion of coins in a "Penny Pusher" carnival game is similar to the movement of cells in the eye's lens, as described in a new study published in Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science (IOVS). This new insight m ...

Minimal device maximizes macula imaging

date Mar 18, 2015

A smart and simple method developed at Rice University to image a patient's eye could help monitor eye health and spot signs of macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy, especially in developing nations.

As glaucoma cases soar, researchers focus on solutions

date Mar 12, 2015

Ernest Murry saw glaucoma steal his mother's vision, just as it had robbed sight from many other family members. There was a time when it seemed the same might happen to him. "When I went outside to walk, ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.