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Protection of cone cells by HDAC4 mediated Hif1alpha activation could lead to the development of new therapeutics in degenerative eye diseases

Histone deacetylases (HDACs) play key roles in cellular processes such as differentiation and cell growth by affecting the structure of chromatin at gene promoter regions. In Dr. Cepko's retinal degneration model, HDAC4 appears to be preventing cell death at least in part due to stabilization of the oxygen-sensing gene hypoxia-inducible factor 1 alpha (HIF1alpha), which supports cellular survival under hypoxic conditions. These important findings may pave the way for development of new therapeutics that can halt the progressive loss of retinal neurons in different degenerative eye diseases and potentially uncover a general role for HDACs in neuronal survival.

Intellectual Property Status: Patent(s) Pending

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This invention may pave the way for development of new therapeutics that can halt the progressive loss of retinal neurons in different degenerative eye diseases and potentially uncover a general role for HDACs in neuronal survival.

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