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Dietary Sources of Lutein and Zeaxanthin Carotenoids and Their Role in Eye Health
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Nutrients 2013, 5(5), 1823-1839; doi:10.3390/nu5051823

The Role of Lutein in Eye-Related Disease

Department of Ophthalmology, University of Florida, 580 West 8th Street, Tower II, 3rd Fl., Jacksonville, FL 32209, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 March 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 22 May 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrition and the Eye)
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The lens and retina of the human eye are exposed constantly to light and oxygen. In situ phototransduction and oxidative phosphorylation within photoreceptors produces a high level of phototoxic and oxidative related stress. Within the eye, the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin are present in high concentrations in contrast to other human tissues. We discuss the role of lutein and zeaxanthin in ameliorating light and oxygen damage, and preventing age-related cellular and tissue deterioration in the eye. Epidemiologic research shows an inverse association between levels of lutein and zeaxanthin in eye tissues and age related degenerative diseases such as macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts. We examine the role of these carotenoids as blockers of blue-light damage and quenchers of oxygen free radicals. This article provides a review of possible mechanisms of lutein action at a cellular and molecular level. Our review offers insight into current clinical trials and experimental animal studies involving lutein, and possible role of nutritional intervention in common ocular diseases that cause blindness. View Full-Text
Keywords: lutein; age-related macular degeneration; macular pigment; heterochromatic flicker; cataract; macular diseases; uveitis; retinitis pigmentosa lutein; age-related macular degeneration; macular pigment; heterochromatic flicker; cataract; macular diseases; uveitis; retinitis pigmentosa
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Koushan, K.; Rusovici, R.; Li, W.; Ferguson, L.R.; Chalam, K.V. The Role of Lutein in Eye-Related Disease. Nutrients 2013, 5, 1823-1839.

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