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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Induction of corneal epithelial cytochrome P-450 arachidonate metabolism by contact lens wear.

Two biologically active cytochrome P-450 arachidonate metabolites previously were characterized: 12(R)-hydroxy-5,8,10,14-eicosatetraenoic acid (12(R)-HETE) and 12(R)-hydroxy-5,8,14-eicosatrienoic acid (12(R)-DH-HETE), which are endogenously formed in the corneal epithelium. The functional activity of these novel metabolites mimics changes observed in hypoxic corneas. Therefore, the effect of hypoxic stress was examined on metabolite formation in rabbits fitted with polymethylmethacrylate contact lenses. Although applied lenses fit tightly to the rabbit cornea, mechanical irritation also may contribute to the ocular response. Contact lens-induced hypoxic stress stimulated endogenous formation of both 12(R)-HETE (a sodium, potassium adenosine triphosphatase inhibitor) and 12(R)-DH-HETE (a vasodilatory, chemotactic, and angiogenic factor) in a time-dependent manner. After 4 hr of contact lens wear, a 21-fold increase in endogenous 12(R)-HETE formation concomitant with an increase in corneal thickness was observed. After prolonged contact lens wear (144 hr), a 23-fold increase in endogenous 12(R)-DH-HETE formation was found, corresponding with the appearance of a marked conjunctival inflammation characterized by corneal neovascularization. The increased formation of these compounds was associated with time-dependent changes in corneal endothelial morphology. The ability of 12(R)-HETE and 12(R)-DH-HETE to mediate the clinical signs of corneal hypoxia suggest these metabolites may be potential mediators of contact lens complications that followed conditions of hypoxic stress and possibly mechanical irritation in this model.[1]


  1. Induction of corneal epithelial cytochrome P-450 arachidonate metabolism by contact lens wear. Davis, K.L., Conners, M.S., Dunn, M.W., Schwartzman, M.L. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. (1992) [Pubmed]
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