Molecular Interactions of Crystallins in Relation to Optical Properties
The transparency of the lens depends on an even distribution of protein and water over distances comparable to the wavelength of light, while the degree of refraction is controlled partly by the ability of the lens to change shape. The core regions of certain lenses such as carp and rat have an extremely high refractive index as a result of high protein concentration, which confers rigidity on that region of the lens. By contrast the outer regions of these lenses, like the complete human lens, have a lower proportion of protein to water and are malleable (van Heyningen, 1976; Philipson, 1969; Fagerholm et al., 1981). Furthermore, there is an increasing protein concentration gradient from the periphery to the core of the lens, leading to a gradient of refractive index that almost abolishes spherical aberration (Fernald and Wright, 1983; Sivak, 1985).
KeywordsHuman Lens Lens Protein Senile Cataract Ribbon Diagram Mouse Lens
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