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PloS one

SIRT6 is required for normal retinal function.


PMID 24896097

Abstract

The retina is one of the major energy consuming tissues within the body. In this context, synaptic transmission between light-excited rod and cone photoreceptors and downstream ON-bipolar neurons is a highly demanding energy consuming process. Sirtuin 6 (SIRT6), a NAD-dependent deacylase, plays a key role in regulating glucose metabolism. In this study, we demonstrate that SIRT6 is highly expressed in the retina, controlling levels of histone H3K9 and H3K56 acetylation. Notably, despite apparent normal histology, SIRT6 deficiency caused major retinal transmission defects concomitant to changes in expression of glycolytic genes and glutamate receptors, as well as elevated levels of apoptosis in inner retina cells. Our results identify SIRT6 as a critical modulator of retinal function, likely through its effects on chromatin.

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