Christine M. B. Skumatz

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The emission properties of ocular lipofuscin granules isolated from human retinal pigment epithelial cells are examined by using steady-state fluorescence spectroscopy and spectrally resolved confocal microscopy. The shape of the emission spectrum of a thick sample of lipofuscin granules dried on glass varies with excitation energy. The polarization of this(More)
For most epithelial cells, the adherens junction protein E-cadherin is an epithelial morphogen, inducing the development of an epithelial phenotype in vitro after cell contact at confluency. Here retinal pigment epithelial cells (RPE), which lack E-cadherin but express a cadherin that is also found in many non-epithelial cells (N-cadherin), were examined(More)
PURPOSE To determine whether retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells, which reportedly express N-cadherin as their major cadherin cell adhesion protein, also express the more common epithelial cadherin, E-cadherin. METHODS Cadherins expressed by human RPE cells in situ were examined by western blot analysis of extracts prepared from the RPE of human adult(More)
PURPOSE To determine how time at confluence affects the properties of cultured human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells, with emphasis on the adherens junction. METHODS Cultures were maintained at confluence without passage for intervals to several months. Adherens junction proteins (N-cadherin, E-cadherin, alpha-catenin, beta-catenin, plakoglobin,(More)
We have previously developed methods based upon differential cell adhesion to select for cells of two different phenotypes, epithelioid and fusiform, from cultures of human RPE. Here we considered whether the differences in cell shape correlated with differences in protein tyrosine phosphorylation since it is known that elevated phosphorylation perturbs the(More)
Melanosomes were recently shown to protect ARPE-19 cells, a human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cell line, against oxidative stress induced by hydrogen peroxide. One postulated mechanism of antioxidant action of melanin is its ability to bind metal ions. The aim here was to determine whether melanosomes are competent to bind iron within living cells,(More)
The pigment melanin, which is believed to play a photoprotective role, was quantified here in human RPE cells from donors of different age. Electron spin resonance (ESR) spectroscopy was shown to provide a quantitative measure of melanin and was used as a non-destructive measure of melanin content. Results indicated an age-related melanin loss in RPE cells,(More)
Although photodegradation of the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) melanin may contribute to the etiology of age-related macular degeneration, the molecular mechanisms of this phenomenon and the structural changes of the modified melanin remain unknown. Recently, we found that the ratio of pyrrole-2,3,4,5-tetracarboxylic acid (PTeCA) to(More)
Methanol has neurotoxic actions on the human retina due to its metabolite, formic acid, which is a mitochondrial toxin. In methanol poisoned animals, morphologic changes were seen both in retinal photoreceptors and in cells of the underlying retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). Here the effects of formate exposure on the two retinal cell types were analyzed in(More)
PURPOSE To determine whether aging is accompanied by changes in aerobic photoreactivity of retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) melanosomes isolated from human donors of different ages, and to compare the photoreactivity of aged melanosomes with that of RPE lipofuscin. METHODS Human RPE pigment granules were isolated from RPE cells pooled into groups(More)