Acta Med. 2010, 53: 147-151

Effect of Ramadan Fasting on Tear Proteins

Reyhaneh Sariri, Abdolali Varasteh, Reza Hassan Sajedi

Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Guilan, Rasht, Iran

Received June 26, 2009
Accepted May 20, 2010

Muslims abstain from eating, drinking and smoking from dawn to sunset during the holy month of Ramadan. Prolonged fasting is thought to be among risk factors for many diseases, e.g., cardiovascular, gastrointestinal and various infectious diseases. It could also play a part in several eye diseases, including dry eye syndrome, glaucoma, and cataract. Toxic and oxidative effects due to increased concentrations of some biochemicals as a result of reduction in tear volume thought to play an important role in damaging ocular tissue. Human tear is an important biological fluid similar to blood in many aspects. Tear film is composed of three basic layers i.e. lipid, aqueous and mucin. The tear film covering the ocular surface presents a mechanical and antimicrobial barrier, and endures an optical refractive surface. The aim of this study was to analyze and compare tear protein of volunteers during fasting. Using two reliable analytical methods, i.e. electrophoresis and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), we compared tear protein content of sixty volunteers (35 males and 25 females, 23–27 years old) during fasting in holly month of Ramadan (FAST: n=62) and one month before Ramadan (CTRL: n=60). The results showed that some identified tear proteins decreased during fasting. On the other hand, the activity of some enzymes such as lysozyme, lactoferrin and alpha amylase also decreased in fasting samples. Electrophoresis results showed that tear protein patterns in FAST (P<0.05) were different from those of CTRL. There were a few more protein peaks in the FAST group (P<0.005) than in CTRL.


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