Manipulating ER chaperones and the UPR for neuroprotection in retinal diseases
Journal of Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology

Journal of Clinical and Experimental Ophthalmology
Open Access

ISSN: 2155-9570

Manipulating ER chaperones and the UPR for neuroprotection in retinal diseases

5th International Conference on Clinical & Experimental Ophthalmology

August 04-06, 2015 Valencia, Spain

Sarah Xin Zhang

Scientific Tracks Abstracts: J Clin Exp Ophthalmol

Abstract :

ER chaperones are a group of proteins in the ER that assist in de novo protein folding/refolding and the timely removal of
irreversibly misfolded and aggregated proteins to maintain the cellular proteome homeostasis. They are critical components and
major downstream targets of the highly conserved unfolded protein response (UPR) that harnessing transcriptional and translational
regulatory systems to reduce/eliminate ER stress. Major chaperones and folding enzymes in the ER include: Chaperones of the heat
shock protein family such as GRP78 and its co-chaperone partners (e.g., p58IPK); Chaperone lectins such as calnexin and calreticulin
and thioloxidoreductases of the protein disulfide isomerase (PDI) family. Recent work demonstrates that manipulating the UPR or
enhancing ER chaperone activities can protect retinal neurons in a wide range of acute or chronic injury models. Over expression of
GRP78 orp58IPK attenuates ER stress and protects retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) against apoptosis and cell death. Mice lacking p58IPK
are more sensitive to ER stress and RGC loss related to glutamate toxicity or aging. The presentation will discuss the intriguing
neuroprotective potential of ER chaperones and UPR manipulation in retinal neurons and RPE cells and highlight their probable
implication in the prevention and treatment of retinal degeneration.

Biography :

Sarah X Zhang is currently a tenured Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, Biochemistry and Neuroscience at School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, State
University of New York. She is a Faculty Member at the SUNY Eye Institute and Graduate School at SUNY Buffalo. She is a well-established Clinician Scientist and Vision
Researcher and has published over 75 peer-reviewed journal articles, reviews and book chapters. Her laboratory studies disease mechanisms and ER stress signaling
in diabetic retinopathy, age-related macular degeneration and glaucomatous retinopathy. She has served on editorial boards for 7 professional journals and on NIH and
international grant review panels.