Abstract Title:

N-acetylcysteine alleviates ocular surface damage in STZ-induced diabetic mice by inhibiting the ROS/NLRP3/Caspase-1/IL-1β signaling pathway.

Abstract Source:

Exp Eye Res. 2021 Jun 5 ;209:108654. Epub 2021 Jun 5. PMID: 34102208

Abstract Author(s):

Xuemei Liu, Hui Liu, Xiaoxiao Lu, Shaozhen Zhao

Article Affiliation:

Xuemei Liu


Diabetes mellitus (DM) induces damage to the ocular surface, which leads to vision decline. In the current study, we investigated whether N-acetylcysteine (NAC) plays a protective role in diabetes-induced ocular surface damage. The diabetic mice model was treated with 0.3% NAC topically. Corneal epithelial integrity, tear volume and corneal sensitivity were examined by sodium fluorescein staining, phenol red cotton thread and esthesiometer respectively. The level of reactive oxygen species (ROS) was measured with 2',7-dichlorofluorescein diacetate. The expression of NLRP3, IL-1β and caspase-1 were evaluated by RT-PCR, western blot and immunostaining. The level of SOD1 was assessed by RT-PCR. We found that the expression of NLRP3, IL-1β and caspase-1 were elevated in diabetic cornea and conjunctiva. Treatment with NAC improved corneal epithelial integrity, increased tearproduction and corneal sensitivity in diabetic mice. Moreover, NAC markedly attenuated ROS accumulation and decreased NLRP3, IL-1β and caspase-1 levels in diabetic cornea and conjunctiva. These results suggest that NAC improves ocular surface damage in STZ-induced diabetic mice, which may be related to the inhibition of the ROS/NLRP3/Caspase-1/IL-1β signaling pathway.

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