Longevity Articles

Curcumin Protects Against Blue Light-Induced Retinal Damage

Curcumin Protects Against Blue Light-Induced Retinal Damage
  • Blue light is damaging to RPE (retinal pigment epithelium) cells; RPE damage is linked to vision loss and disorders. 

  • A metabolite of curcumin called hexahydrocurcumin (HHC) protected against blue light damage in RPE cells (both human and mouse). 

  • HHC promoted autophagy, reduced oxidative stress, and effectively reversed blue light-induced RPE cell death.

This study will be published in the journal Phytomedicine in February 2023: 

Study excerpt (abstract):

Background: We have previously demonstrated that blue light can damage retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells and their underlying mechanisms. We found that hexahydrocurcumin (HHC), a metabolite of curcumin, had better retinal protection than curcumin. However, the involved mechanisms remain unclear.

Methods: By exposing ARPE-19 human RPE cells and mouse primary RPE cells to blue light, the intracellular mechanisms of HHC in cells were investigated, including the proliferation of RPE cells and the effects of HHC on activating intracellular protective mechanisms and related factors. Next-generation sequencing (NGS) RNA sequencing revealed the underlying mechanisms involved in the induction and regulation of HHC treatment following blue light exposure.

Results: HHC promoted autophagy by enhancing autophagic flux, reduced oxidative stress and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, and effectively reversed blue light-induced cell death. RNA sequencing-based bioinformatics approaches comprehensively analyze HHC-mediated cellular processes.

Conclusion: Our findings elucidate the mechanisms of HHC against blue light damage in RPE cells and are beneficial for the development of natural metabolite-based preventive drugs or functional foods.

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