Drinking hydrogen water improves photoreceptor structure and function in retinal degeneration 6 mice

Asaka Lee Shiozawa, Hiroshi Takahashi, Ikuroh Ohsawa, Iwao Sakane, Kai Miyazaki, Maika Kobayashi, Mashito Sakai, Shuhei Kameya, Takashi Okada, Toru Igarashi, Tsutomu Igarashi, Yasuhiro Ikeda, Yoshitaka Miyagawa

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DOI: 10.1038/s41598-022-17903-8 DOI is the universal ID for this study.

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Retinitis pigmentosa (RP) is a genetically heterogeneous group of inherited retinal disorders involving the progressive dysfunction of photoreceptors and the retinal pigment epithelium, for which there is currently no treatment. The rd6 mouse is a natural model of autosomal recessive retinal degeneration. Given the known contributions of oxidative stress caused by reactive oxygen species (ROS) and selective inhibition of potent ROS peroxynitrite and OH·by H2 gas we have previously demonstrated, we hypothesized that ingestion of H2 water may delay the progression of photoreceptor death in rd6 mice. H2 mice showed significantly higher retinal thickness as compared to controls on optical coherence tomography. Histopathological and morphometric analyses revealed higher thickness of the outer nuclear layer for H2 mice than controls, as well as higher counts of opsin red/green-positive cells. RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) analysis of differentially expressed genes in the H2 group versus control group revealed 1996 genes with significantly different expressions. Gene and pathway ontology analysis showed substantial upregulation of genes responsible for phototransduction in H2 mice. Our results show that drinking water high in H2 (1.2-1.6 ppm) had neuroprotective effects and inhibited photoreceptor death in mice, and suggest the potential of H2 for the treatment of RP.

Publish Year 2022
Country Japan
Rank Positive
Journal Nature Scientific Reports
Primary Topic Eye
Secondary TopicRetinal Injury
Model Mouse
Tertiary TopicRetinitis Pigmentosa
Vehicle Water (Dissolved)
pH Neutral
Application Ingestion