Tempol-H inhibits opacification of lenses in organ culture

J. Samuel Zigler, Chuan Qin, Toshikazu Kamiya, Murali C. Krishna, Qiufang Cheng, Santa Tumminia, Paul Russell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Cataract is the world's leading cause of blindness and a disease for which no efficacious medical therapy is available. To screen potential anti-cataract agents, a lens organ culture model system was used. Opacification of lenses maintained in culture was induced by specific insults including H 2O2 or the cataractogenic sugar xylose. Potential anti-cataract agents were added to the culture medium and their ability to inhibit opacification and certain biochemical changes associated with the opacification were assessed. Among the compounds tested, Tempol-H, the hydroxylamine of the nitroxide Tempol, gave the most promising results. It significantly inhibited opacification of rat lenses in an H2O 2-induced cataract system as well as opacification of rhesus monkey lenses induced by xylose. Tempol-H inhibited the loss of glutathione, the leakage of protein, and decreases in the ability of cultured lenses to accumulate 3H-choline from the medium, all of which were associated with the development of lens opacification. The antioxidative activity of Tempol-H and its ability to re-dox cycle make it an attractive candidate as a therapeutic agent for the prevention of aging-related cataract.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1194-1202
Number of pages9
JournalFree Radical Biology and Medicine
Issue number10
StatePublished - Nov 15 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Cataract
  • Cataract therapy
  • Free radicals
  • Lens
  • Organ culture
  • Oxidative stress
  • Tempol-H

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology (medical)


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