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Biological Chemistry

Editor-in-Chief: Brüne, Bernhard

Editorial Board: Buchner, Johannes / Lei, Ming / Ludwig, Stephan / Thomas, Douglas D. / Turk, Boris / Wittinghofer, Alfred

IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 3.014
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 3.162

CiteScore 2018: 3.09

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 1.482
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.820

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Volume 383, Issue 3-4


A2E and Blue Light in the Retina: The Paradigm of Age-Related Macular Degeneration

H. Shaban / C. Richter
Published Online: 2005-06-01 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/BC.2002.054


The photoreceptors in the retina, designed to initiate the cascade of events which link the incoming light to the sensation of vision, are susceptible to damage by light, particularly blue light. The damage can lead to cell death and diseases. The turnover of retinal, an essential element of the visual process, is the basis of the events that lead to damage. Free retinal, absorbing in the blue region of the visible spectrum, is phototoxic, and is a precursor of the (photo)toxic compound A2E, which specifically targets cytochrome oxidase and thereby induces cell death by apoptosis. Cell death induced by A2E in the dark is prevented by negatively charged phospholipids. The blue lightfiltering molecules lutein and zeaxanthin are tailormade substances protecting the retina. In vitro, they protect cytochrome oxidase against the permanent damage caused by A2E in combination with light. These novel findings should enable us to prevent or cure the dry form of agerelated macular degeneration, the leading cause of severe visual impairment in humans living in developed countries.

About the article

Published Online: 2005-06-01

Published in Print: 2002-04-12

Citation Information: Biological Chemistry, Volume 383, Issue 3-4, Pages 537–545, ISSN (Print) 1431-6730, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/BC.2002.054.

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