What is lipofuscin?

What is lipofuscin?

RPE lipofuscin can act as a photosensitizer, generating reactive oxygen species, and mediating light-induced damage.

What is the significance of lipofuscin pigments?

Lipofuscin is a fluorochrome and may sensitize lysosomes to visible light, a process potentially important for the pathogenesis of age-related macular degeneration.

What causes lipofuscin?

Numerous studies indicate that the formation of lipofuscin is due to the oxidative alteration of macromolecules by oxygen-derived free radicals generated in reactions catalyzed by redox-active iron of low molecular weight.

How do you identify lipofuscin?

Several methods were reported to detect lipofuscin, including fluorescence microscopy due to the natural auto-fluorescence of lipofuscin [36], as well as histochemical dyes like SBB, Berlin Blue, Nile Blue, Ziehl-Neelsen and Periodic acid Schiff [37].

Can lipofuscin cause inflammation?

We suggest that products of the photooxidation of bis-retinoid lipofuscin pigments in RPE cells could serve as a trigger for the complement system, a trigger than would predispose the macula to disease and that, over time, could contribute to chronic inflammation.

Is lipofuscin a protein?

Lipofuscin is mainly present in post mitotic cells. It consists of lipids, proteins, carbohydrates and a small amount of metals. Despite that lipofuscin has been well-known for a long time the exact composition of the protein portion is uncertain2.

How do you get rid of lipofuscin?

High lipofuscin levels in the RPE have been associated with retinal degeneration and blindness in Stargardt disease patients and animal models. Currently, there is no treatment to prevent and/or revert lipofuscin-driven retinal degenerative changes.

Is lipofuscin toxic?

Indeed, it has been proposed that the ability to form lipofuscin is a successful adaptive response and neurons that lose this ability are susceptible to degeneration (34). On the other hand, more recent evidence indicates that amassed lipofuscin may be hazardous to cellular functions (2).

lipofuscin A golden-brown pigment that occurs in granules in muscle and nerve cells in numbers proportional to the age of the individual. Also known as age pigment. Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005

What is lipofuscin accumulation in the eye?

Lipofuscin accumulation in the eye, is a major risk factor implicated in macular degeneration, a degenerative disease, and Stargardt disease, an inherited juvenile form of macular degeneration.

What is lipofuscin (age pigment)?

Lipofuscin (age pigment) is a brown-yellow, electron-dense, autofluorescent material that accumulates progressively over time in lysosomes of postmitotic cells, such as neurons and cardiac myocytes. The exact mechanisms behind this accumulation are still unclear.

What is the role of lipofuscin in the pathophysiology of macular degeneration?

The accumulation of lipofuscin in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) is a hallmark of aging in the eye and has been implicated in various retinal degenerations, including age-related macular degeneration.