Author Interviews, Diabetes, Ophthalmology / 15.12.2013

Fu-Shin X. Yu, Ph.D. Professor and Director of Research Kresge Eye Institute/Department of Ophthalmology Wayne State University School of Medicine Detroit, MI 48201MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Fu-Shin X. Yu, Ph.D. Professor and Director of Research Kresge Eye Institute/Department of Ophthalmology Wayne State University School of Medicine Detroit, MI 48201

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main results of your study? Dr. Fu-Shin X. Yu: Using genome-wide cDNA array, we identified a large group of gene differentially expressed in healing corneal cells of diabetes mellitus, when compared to normoglycemia, corneas. Gene ontology analysis suggests transforming growth factor (TGFβ) signaling as a major signaling pathway affected by hyperglycemia in diabetes mellitus corneal epithelial cells. (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Ophthalmology, Pain Research / 07.08.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jelle Vehof PhD Department of Twin Research & Genetic Epidemiology King’s College London, St Thomas’ Hospital, Waterloo, London, England Department of Ophthalmology & Epidemiology University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, the Netherlands MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Vehof: The current study provides the first empirical evidence that individuals with dry eye disease show altered pain sensitivity. Specifically, this study demonstrates that subjects with DED pain and discomfort complaints have lower pain threshold and pain tolerance of heat-based stimulus compared to those without. These findings support the hypothesis that a subset of persons with DED is more sensitive to pain. (more…)
Author Interviews, Ophthalmology / 17.07.2013

Chiu-Fang Chou DrPH Division of Diabetes Translation National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion CDC, 4770 Buford Hwy, NE (K-10) Atlanta GA 30341-3727MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Chiu-Fang Chou DrPH Division of Diabetes Translation National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion CDC, 4770 Buford Hwy, NE (K-10) Atlanta GA 30341-3727 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? A: We estimated nearly 9 million people aged 40 years and older are visually impaired using the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Three out of every four people aged 40 years and older with VI have uncorrected refractive error that could be easily corrected with simple glasses or contact lenses. The ocular disease most associated with visual impairment in our study sample was age-related macular degeneration. Finally, increasing age and low educational attainment were significant predictors of visual impairment. (more…)
Author Interviews, Ophthalmology / 15.07.2013

Michael Belkin, MA, MD Professor of Ophthalmology Director, Ophthalmic Technologies Laboratory Goldschleger Eye Research Institute Tel Aviv University Sheba Medical Center Tel Hashomer 52621 IsraelMedicalResearch.com Interview with: Michael Belkin, MA, MD Professor of Ophthalmology Director, Ophthalmic Technologies Laboratory Goldschleger Eye Research Institute Tel Aviv University Sheba Medical Center Tel Hashomer 52621 Israel MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Belkin: Modern ophthalmic treatment, when freely available is able to reduce the incidence of blindness, and presumably visual impairment considerably. In Israel the rate of new cases of blindness per 100.000 people [age adjusted] was reduced between 1999 and 2010 from 33.8 to 14.8, i.e., by over 56%. The reduction was in all major causes of blindness, Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD), Glaucoma, Diabetic Retinopathy and Cataract. In the non-treatable retinal dystrophies such as retinitis pigmentosa, there was no significant changes over this period. (more…)
Duke, Mental Health Research, Ophthalmology / 08.06.2013

From: Duke University

Department of Psychology & Neuroscience, Institute for Genome Sciences & Policy 2020 West Main Street, Suite 201 Box 104410 Durham, North Carolina 27708

TITLE: Retinal Vessel Caliber and Lifelong Neuropsychological Functioning An international research team from the USA, UK, Singapore and New Zealand reports that the size of the blood vessels in the back of the eye can indicate the health of the brain of people approaching midlife (age 38 years), years before age-related declines in brain functioning. PUBLICATION SOURCE: Psychological Science, advance online publication date, May 2013.   BACKGROUND:
  • Young people who score low on IQ tests, tend to be at higher risk for diseases in later life, and even tend to die younger.
  • One plausible explanation for this link is that intelligence tests assess brain health.
  • Digital retinal imaging is a relatively new and non-invasive method to visualize the small blood vessels in the retina, at the back of the eye. The small vessels in the eye may reflect the conditions of the vessels inside the brain because both eye and brain vessels share similar size, structure and function. Thus, retinal imaging can provide a window to study the health of the brain in living humans.
  • We studied the link between retinal vessel width and intelligence tests scores in the representative Dunedin birth cohort of 1000 New Zealanders born in 1972-73, and followed for 38 years with repeated assessments.
  • Using a digital fundus camera, which can photograph the interior surface of the eye, we were able to assess the size of the small blood-vessels in the retina, namely, the arterioles and venules (the small branches of the arteries and veins). We also administered intelligence tests in childhood and adulthood.
THE FINDING:
  • We found that study members who presented with wider venules had poorer intelligence tests scores at midlife (age 38 years). This finding held up independently of potential factors that may explain this link, such as low socio-economic status, smoking, or diabetes.
  • Moreover, wider venules in the eye were linked with lower childhood IQ that had been tested 25 years earlier.
  • (more…)
JAMA, Macular Degeneration, Ophthalmology / 10.05.2013

MedicalResearch.com eInterview with: Emily Y. Chew, MD Division of Epidemiology and Clinical Applications National Eye Institute (NEI)/National Institutes of Health (NIH), Bethesda, Maryland MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study?
 Dr. Chew: For patients who have intermediate age-related macular degeneration (AMD) or those with advanced AMD in one eye, we have recommended a mixture of vitamins and minerals (vitamin C, E and beta-carotene, and zinc oxide and cupric oxide), known as Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) formulation.  We tested the effects of adding carotenoids, lutein/zeaxanthin, or omega-3 fatty acids or both to the AREDS formulation.  Omega-3 fatty acids did not have any effect on AMD.  Addition of lutein/zeaxanthin provided an additional 10% increase in the reduction of progression to advanced AMD.  In persons with the lowest dietary intake of lutein/zeaxanthin, supplementation with lutein/zeaxanthin provided 25% reduction in rates of developing advanced AMD When we tested lutein/zeaxanthin directly against beta-carotene, the risk of progressing to advanced AMD was reduced by 20%. Furthermore, beta-carotene was found to increase the risk of lung cancer.  To improve the safety and efficacy of the AREDS formulation, we would suggest the elimination of beta-carotene and adding lutein/zeaxanthin.  Omega-3 fatty acids added no further benefit. (more…)