Those who suffer from cataracts will know the frustration that comes from this degenerative eye disease. Cataracts affect more than 20 million people worldwide and are caused when the lenses of the eyes lost their transparency. In exciting eye care news, a team of American researchers believe to have made a breakthrough in the treatment of cataracts, using eye drops to reverse cataracts altogether. Impressive.
Researchers from the University of California in San Francisco (UCSF) have identified a new compound that is soluble enough to be administered via a simple eye dropper. What’s more, when tested on mice, results were seen in as little as two weeks.
While cataracts are treatable, surgery can be uncomfortable and very expensive. Elderly people in developing nations are also affected by this disease, as many don’t have access to resources to treat it.
Jason Gestwicki, associate professor at UCSF, says this finding has the potential to help millions of people, and potential lots of applications. "If you look at… the protein aggregates that cause cataracts, you'd be hard-pressed to tell them apart from those that cause Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, or Huntington's diseases," he said. "By studying cataracts we've been able to… show by proof-of-concept that these technologies could also be used in nervous system diseases.”
Imagine treating Alzheimer’s Disease or eye issues with a simple drop. Well, it might not belong in the realm of imagination anymore.