Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.466, No.4, 622-628, 2015
Site specific oxidation of amino acid residues in rat lens gamma-crystallin induced by low-dose gamma-irradiation
Although cataracts are a well-known age-related disease, the mechanism of their formation is not well understood. It is currently thought that eye lens proteins become abnormally aggregated, initially causing clumping that scatters the light and interferes with focusing on the retina, and ultimately resulting in a cataract. The abnormal aggregation of lens proteins is considered to be triggered by various post-translational modifications, such as oxidation, deamidation, truncation and isomerization, that occur during the aging process. Such modifications, which are also generated by free radical and reactive oxygen species derived from gamma-irradiation, decrease crystallin solubility and lens transparency, and ultimately lead to the development of a cataract. In this study, we irradiated young rat lenses with low-dose gamma-rays and extracted the water-soluble and insoluble protein fractions. The water-soluble and water-insoluble lens proteins were digested with trypsin, and the resulting peptides were analyzed by LC-MS. Specific oxidation sites of methionine, cysteine and tryptophan in rat water-soluble and -insoluble gamma E and gamma F-crystallin were determined by one-shot analysis. The oxidation sites in rat gamma E and gamma F-crystallin resemble those previously identified in gamma C and gamma D-crystallin from human age-related cataracts. Our study on modifications of crystallins induced by ionizing irradiation may provide useful information relevant to human senile cataract formation. (C) 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.