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Brain Res Bull. 2010 Feb 15;81(2-3):211-8. doi: 10.1016/j.brainresbull.2009.08.017. Epub 2009 Aug 29.

Corneal aldehyde dehydrogenases: multiple functions and novel nuclear localization.

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1
Molecular Toxicology and Environmental Health Sciences Program, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Colorado Denver, Aurora, CO, USA.

Abstract

Aldehyde dehydrogenases (ALDHs) represent a superfamily of NAD(P)(+)-dependent enzymes which catalyze the oxidation of a wide variety of endogenous and exogenous aldehydes to their corresponding acids. Some ALDHs have been identified as corneal crystallins and thereby contribute to the protective and refractive properties of the cornea. ALDH3A1 is highly expressed in the cornea of most mammals with the exception of rabbit that abundantly expresses ALDH1A1 in the cornea instead of ALDH3A1. In this study, we examined the gene expression of other ALDHs and found high messenger levels of ALDH1B1, ALDH2 and ALDH7A1 in mouse cornea and lens. Substantial evidence supports a protective role for ALDH3A1 and ALDH1A1 against ultraviolet radiation (UVR)-induced oxidative damage to ocular tissues. The mechanism by which this protection occurs includes UVR filtering, detoxification of reactive aldehydes generated by UVR exposure and antioxidant activity. We recently have identified ALDH3A1 as a nuclear protein in corneal epithelium. Herein, we show that ALDH3A1 is also found in the nucleus of rabbit keratocytes. The nuclear presence of ALDH3A1 may be involved in cell cycle regulation.

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