What is it about?

Pterygium is a ocular surface disease with fleshy, abnormal cell growth. All somatic non-immune cells of the individual have the same genomic DNA, as the disease is localised to a certain area of the conjunctiva/cornea, epigenetics is likely to explain the pathology. Epigenetic regulation of various genes involved in these processes may be involved. Here we show that a few promoters are differentially methylated in pterygium compared to uninvolved conjunctiva in the same eyes.

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Why is it important?

Excessive ultraviolet stimulation may cause abnormal epigenetic regulation of some genes. We believe this is the first link between an environmental factor and epigenetic mechanism of a ocular surface disease.

Perspectives

DNA methylation is one of the pathways for pterygium progression

Prof Louis Tong
National University of Singapore

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This page is a summary of: Aberrant DNA Methylation of Matrix Remodeling and Cell Adhesion Related Genes in Pterygium, PLoS ONE, February 2011, PLOS, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0014687.
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