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Effect of Humanin G (HNG) on inflammation in age-related macular degeneration (AMD).


Inflammation plays a crucial role in the etiology and pathogenesis of AMD (Age-related Macular Degeneration). Humanin G (HNG) is a Mitochondrial Derived Peptide (MDP) that is cytoprotective in AMD and can protect against mitochondrial and cellular stress induced by damaged AMD mitochondria. The goal of this study was to test our hypothesis that inflammation-associated marker protein levels are increased in AMD and treatment with HNG leads to reduction in their protein levels. Humanin protein levels were measured in the plasma of AMD patients and normal subjects using ELISA assay. Humanin G was added to AMD and normal (control) cybrids which had identical nuclei from mitochondria-deficient ARPE-19 cells but differed in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) content derived from clinically characterized AMD patients and normal (control) subjects. Cell lysates were extracted from untreated and HNG-treated AMD and normal cybrids, and the Luminex XMAP multiplex assay was used to measure the levels of inflammatory proteins. AMD plasma showed reduced Humanin protein levels, but higher protein levels of inflammation markers compared to control plasma samples. In AMD RPE cybrid cells, Humanin G reduced the CD62E/ E-Selectin, CD62P/ P-Selectin, ICAM-1, TNF-α, MIP-1α, IFN-γ, IL-1β, IL-13, and IL-17A protein levels, thereby suggesting that Humanin G may rescue from mtDNA-mediated inflammation in AMD cybrids. In conclusion, we present novel findings that: A) show reduced Humanin protein levels in AMD plasma vs. normal plasma; B) suggest the role of inflammatory markers in AMD pathogenesis, and C) highlight the positive effects of Humanin G in reducing inflammation in AMD.

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