Protective effects of <i>Cassia tora</i> leaves in experimental cataract by modulating intracellular communication, membrane co-transporters, energy metabolism and the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway

2017-03-09T06:43:28Z (GMT) by V. Sreelakshmi Annie Abraham
<p><b>Context:</b> Cataract is the clouding of eye lens which causes impairment in vision and accounts for the leading factor of global blindness. Functional food-based prevention of cataract finds application in vision research because of its availability and easy access to all classes of the society. <i>Cassia tora</i> Linn. (Caesalpinaceae) is an edible plant mentioned in the traditional systems of medicine for whole body health, especially to the eyes.</p> <p><b>Objective:</b> The present study evaluates the potential of ethyl acetate fraction of <i>Cassia tora</i> leaves (ECT) on experimental cataract.</p> <p><b>Materials and methods:</b> Cataract was induced by a single subcutaneous injection of sodium selenite (4 μg/g body weight) on 10th day. ECT was supplemented orally from 8th day up to 12th day at a concentration of 5 μg/g body weight and marker parameters were evaluated after 30 days.</p> <p><b>Results:</b> The production of MPO and the activation of calpain were reduced 52.17% and 36.67% by ECT in lens tissue, respectively. It modulated the energy status by significantly increasing the activity of CCO 1 (55.56%) and ATP production (41.88%). ECT maintained the ionic balance in the lens by reducing the level of sodium (50%) and increasing the level of potassium (42.5%). It also reduced cell junction modifications and preserved a functional ubiquitin-proteasome pathway.</p> <p><b>Discussion and conclusion:</b> The results reinforce the growing attention on wild plant food resources for preventive protection against cataract. The data suggest the value of <i>Cassia tora</i> leaves as a functional food for ameliorating cataract pathology.</p>