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Retina protein could prevent blindness

Retina protein could prevent blindness
Highlights

A study that appeared in the Journal of Neuroscience stated that researchers, including an Indian-origin scientist, have discovered that a certain protein in the retina plays an essential role in the function and survival of light-sensing cells that are required for vision.

A study that appeared in the Journal of Neuroscience stated that researchers, including an Indian-origin scientist, have discovered that a certain protein in the retina plays an essential role in the function and survival of light-sensing cells that are required for vision.

The team from Institut De Recherche Clinique De Montreal (ICRM) in Canada studied a process called compartmentalisation, which establishes and maintains different compartments within a cell, each containing a specific set of proteins. This process is crucial for neurons (nerve cells) to function properly.

A good example of compartmentalisation is observed in a specialised type of light-sensing neurons found in the retina, the photoreceptors, which are made up of different compartments containing specific proteins that are essential for vision.

"Our work identified a new mechanism that explains this process. More specifically, we found that a protein called 'Numb' functions like a traffic controller to direct molecules to the appropriate compartments," said lead researcher Michel Cayouette.

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