Now in our 13th year of bringing you beautiful imagery from biomedical science every day

Search the archive of over 4000 images

Vision Reform

The role of protein ELOV2 in age-related sight deterioration

12 February 2020

Vision Reform

Many people find that enjoying the sight of the sparkling night sky, or glittering images like this mouse retina, gets harder as they age. Vision can deteriorate as the years catch up with us, and researchers trying to understand why have been examining a particular molecule, ELOVL2 (yellow), known to reflect how far along the ageing process our bodies are. Looking at the eyes of ageing mice, they discovered that ELOVL2 not just indicates an ageing system, but plays a role in the decline. ELOVL2 helps produce fatty acids in the brain and retina that promote healthy function and protect from damage, which may explain why as ELOVL2 concentrations decreased with age, eye function declined. However, when the researchers boosted ELOVL2 levels back up, the decline was reversed, raising hopes that this might present a new potential target for treatments, helping older people enjoy the view once more.

Written by Anthony Lewis

Search The Archive

Submit An Image

Follow on Tumblr

Follow on Instagram

What is BPoD?

BPoD stands for Biomedical Picture of the Day. Managed by the MRC Laboratory of Medical Sciences until Jul 2023, it is now run independently by a dedicated team of scientists and writers. The website aims to engage everyone, young and old, in the wonders of biology, and its influence on medicine. The ever-growing archive of more than 4000 research images documents over a decade of progress. Explore the collection and see what you discover. Images are kindly provided for inclusion on this website through the generosity of scientists across the globe.

Read More

BPoD is also available in Catalan at with translations by the University of Valencia.