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PLoS One. 2016 May 20;11(5):e0155488. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0155488. eCollection 2016.

Relationship between Concentrations of Lutein and StARD3 among Pediatric and Geriatric Human Brain Tissue.

Author information

1
Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition, Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, Boston, MA, 02111, United States of America.
2
Moran Eye Center, University of Utah School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, UT, 84132, United States of America.
3
Institute of Gerontology, University of Georgia, Athens, GA, 30602, United States of America.

Abstract

Lutein, a dietary carotenoid, selectively accumulates in human retina and brain. While many epidemiological studies show evidence of a relationship between lutein status and cognitive health, lutein's selective uptake in human brain tissue and its potential function in early neural development and cognitive health have been poorly evaluated at a molecular level. The objective of this study was to evaluate the cross-sectional relationship between concentrations of brain lutein and StARD3 (identified as its binding protein in retinal tissue) among three age groups: infants (1-4 months, n = 10), older adults (55-86 years, n = 8), and centenarians (98-105 years, n = 10). Brain lutein concentrations were analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography and StARD3 levels were analyzed by Western Blot analysis. The strong relationship in infant brains (r = 0.75, P < 0.001) suggests that lutein has a role in neural development. The relationship remained significant but weaker in older adults (r = 0.51, P < 0.05) and insignificant in centenarians (r = 0.08, P > 0.05), seven of whom had mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or dementia. These exploratory findings suggest an age-related decrease or abnormality of StARD3 activity in human brain. Given that StARD3 is also involved in cholesterol transportation, a process that is aberrant in neurodegenerative diseases, the potential protective function of lutein against these diseases remains to be explored.

PMID:
27205891
PMCID:
PMC4874591
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0155488
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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