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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2010  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 66-69

Indirect evaluation of corneal apoptosis in contact lens wearers by estimation of nitric oxide and antioxidant enzymes in tears


1 Department of Ophthalmology, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India
2 Department of Biophysics, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India
3 Department of Pharmacology, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India

Correspondence Address:
Amitabh Dash
E-13, Kalkaji, New Delhi-110 019
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0974-620X.64229

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Background : Contact lens induced trauma to the corneal epithelium results in increased release of inflammatory mediators. The keratocyte apoptosis is directly related to epithelial injury and has been correlated with increased production of nitric oxide. Potent antioxidant enzymes protect cells from oxidative damage by inactivating reactive oxygen species and thus inhibiting apoptosis. This study aims at determination of total nitric oxide and antioxidant enzymes in tears which will be an indirect criteria for assessing apoptosis. Materials and Methods : Nitric oxide and antioxidant enzymes were estimated in tears of 25 soft contact lens wearers and compared with 25 age and sex matched controls. Results : Statistically significant increase of nitric oxide (P<0.001), superoxide dismutase (P<0.001) and glutathione peroxidase (P<0.001) levels was seen in tears of contact lens wearers as compared to controls. There was also statistically significant increase in the levels of antioxidant enzymes, superoxide dismutase (P<0.05) and glutathione peroxidase (P<0.01), with increase in the total duration of contact lens wear in years. Conclusions : Increase in the level of nitric oxide and antioxidant enzymes in tears of contact lens wearers suggested that contact lens wear suppresses the process of apoptosis. However, it was also postulated that the increased levels of nitric oxide balances the anti-apoptotic activities of increased levels of antioxidant enzymes by its pro-apoptotic activity leading to protective outcomes in contact lens wearers.


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