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Experimental eye research

Biochemical changes and cataract formation in lenses from rats receiving multiple, low doses of sodium selenite.


PMID 1478277

Abstract

Nuclear cataract formed in rat lens in response to a protocol of multiple, low doses of sodium selenite. Nuclear cataract occurred, in both Wistar and Sprague-Dawley rats, following five subcutaneous injections of selenite over an 8-day period with an accumulated dose of 40-50 nmol selenite g-1 body weight. Glutathione content decreased within the first 24 hr of treatment and remained at 60% of controls. Lipid peroxidation occurred in Wistar rats prior to nuclear cataract formation. A two to three-fold increase in calcium concentration and decreased protein content accompanied nuclear cataract development. Enzyme activities were measured for glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase, and glutathione S-transferase, and only the peroxidase activity remained constant through the period of cataract formation. This protocol resulted in nuclear cataracts similar in appearance to those observed with a single, acute dose of selenite. The opportunity to control the rate of selenite-dependent cataract formation allows further definition of precataractous events.