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Breakthrough: Drug therapy may replace cataract surgery
Breakthrough: Drug therapy may replace cataract surgery. The world’s leading ophthalmologists have recently made a breakthrough that may change the treatment of cataracts-drug therapy may replace surgery.
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The world’s leading ophthalmologists have recently made a breakthrough that may change the treatment of cataracts-drug therapy may replace surgery.
Cataract is the opacity of the lens formed over time, which affects the quality of vision. This is because the accumulation of protein in the lens reduces the transmission of light to the retina. Previous investigations found that cataracts accounted for almost half of the global blindness cases. However, severe cataracts can only be treated by surgical removal of the cloudy lens and implantation of intraocular lenses.
An international team of scientists led by Professor Barbara Pierscionek at Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) in the United Kingdom has published a peer-reviewed research report that shows that the precise optical components of the lens develop earlier than previously thought during pregnancy At the same time, they also discovered how a special protein (aquaporin) affects the water channels in the lens, leading to the formation of cataracts.
Scientists have spent more than ten years performing the most accurate optical measurements at the SPring-8, the world’s largest and most powerful synchrotron in Japan.
A synchrotron is a particle accelerator that generates powerful X-rays by accelerating electrons to the speed of light. X-rays can measure the optical characteristics of the eye with the highest accuracy.
The project team is the first in the world to measure the development of the eye lens optical system. Their research was presented at the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) annual meeting earlier this month.
Professor Pierscionek said: “One of the main causes of cataract vision loss and blindness is worldwide. However, for many people, surgery is inaccessible for various reasons.
“Our findings indicate the role of aquaporin and its importance for the normal functioning of the lens and the clear vision of the eye.”
“We plan to conduct further research in this field, but this discovery and our research on nanotechnology show that drug treatment of cataracts is possible and may completely change the way cataracts are treated, instead of drug-based treatments. Surgery opens up the field. This will have an exciting impact on public health.”
(source:internet, reference only)