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Open Access Increased Nonenzymatically Glycosylated Proteins in the Vitreous Humor of Diabetic Animals

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One of the earliest pathologic changes of diabetes mellitus is increased nonenzymatic glycosylation (i.e., glycation) of proteins, which results in abnormal aggregation of collagen fibrils and production of superoxide radicals. These abnormalities may be responsible for the precocious senescence of connective tissue associated with the disease. We sought to determine whether glycation is increased in the vitreous humor of short-term diabetic cats (6 months' duration) and rabbits (2 months' duration), using a nitroblue tetrazolium colorimetric assay for fructosamine.

Vitreous protein fructosamine concentration was significantly higher in diabetic cats and rabbits, compared with that in control (nondiabetic) animals. These results indicate that glycation is increased in the vitreous humor of short-term diabetic animals, and therefore may be one of the initial triggers for clinically apparent diabetic retinopathy.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Durham V. A. Medical Center, Departments of Ophthalmology, Durham, North Carolina 2: Duke University, Durham, North Carolina; and Department of Internal Medicine, Bowman Gray School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina 3: Durham V. A. Medical Center, Departments of Ophthalmology, Cell Biology, Durham, North Carolina, Department of Ophthalmology, Duke University Eye Center, Box 3802, Durham, NC 27710

Publication date: 1999-02-01

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  • Comparative Medicine (CM), an international journal of comparative and experimental medicine, is the leading English-language publication in the field and is ranked by the Science Citation Index in the upper third of all scientific journals. The mission of CM is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information that expands biomedical knowledge and promotes human and animal health through the study of laboratory animal disease, animal models of disease, and basic biologic mechanisms related to disease in people and animals.

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