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Patients with High-Risk Macular Degeneration Show Improvement with High-Dose Statin Treatment

Researchers at Massachusetts Eye and Ear/Harvard Medical School and the University of Crete have conducted a phase I/II clinical trial investigating the efficacy of statins (cholesterol-lowering medications) for the treatment of patients with the dry form of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) — the leading cause of blindness in the developed world.

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Smart Contact Lens Helps Predict Disease Progression in Glaucoma Patients

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Findings suggest smart contact lenses could help clinicians tailor therapy to glaucoma patients and better evaluate whether treatments are working or not.

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Potential New Approaches to Treating Eye Diseases

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Potential new approaches to treating eye diseases such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are described in a new study published in the February Journal of Experimental Medicine. Hongkang Xi, Menno van Lookeren Campagne, and colleagues discovered that a signaling protein, or cytokine, called IL-33, plays a key role in recruiting phagocytes to damaged retina and induces retinal degeneration. Blocking the IL-33 receptor inhibits this process and prevents injury-induced retinal degeneration.

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Researchers Shed Light on Anti-Adhesive Molecule in the Vascular Endothelium, Suggest New Direction for Anti-Inflammatory Therapy

Mass. Eye and Ear researchers describe the role of endomucin, a molecule that – under healthy circumstances – resists the adhesion of white blood cells as they move through the circulatory system. These findings suggest that promoting the expression of endomucin may prevent the collection of white blood cells that causes tissues to become inflamed.

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Dr. Stuart McKinnon Awarded 2016 Shaffer Prize for Research

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For his research project to determine whether therapies can be designed to modulate the immune system to prevent vision loss and blindness in glaucoma patients, Stuart J. McKinnon, MD, PhD was awarded the 2016 Shaffer Prize for Innovative Glaucoma Research.

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CRISPR Used to Repair Blindness-Causing Genetic Defect in Patient-Derived Stem Cells

Scientists have used a new gene-editing technology called CRISPR, to repair a genetic mutation responsible for retinitis pigmentosa (RP), an inherited condition that causes the retina to degrade and leads to blindness in at least 1.5 million cases worldwide.

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Wearing Glasses Improves Reading Fluency for Kids with 'High' Astigmatism

For children with severe astigmatism, wearing glasses to correct blurred vision can significantly improve accurate reading speed, reports a study in the February issue of Optometry and Vision Science, official journal of the American Academy of Optometry. The journal is published by Wolters Kluwer.

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Farsighted Kids’ Reading Skills Fall Behind Before They Start First Grade

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Kids with uncorrected farsightedness lose ground on reading skills before they ever start first grade, a new study has found. The research, led by Marjean Taylor Kulp of The Ohio State University, uncovers evidence that moderately farsighted preschoolers and kindergarten students perform worse in early literacy than children with normal vision.

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Uncorrected Farsightedness Linked to Literacy Deficits in Preschoolers

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A study funded by the National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institutes of Health, has shown that uncorrected farsightedness (hyperopia) in preschool children is associated with significantly worse performance on a test of early literacy.

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Can You Trust Your Gut on a Crowd’s Mood?

There is good news for frequent public speakers. New research shows that individuals have the ability to quickly and accurately identify a crowd’s general emotion as focused or distracted, suggesting that we can trust our first impression of a crowd’s mood. The paper,Mixed emotions: Sensitivity to facial variance in a crowd of faces was recently published in the Journal of Vision.

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Largest-Ever Study of Cornea Condition Reveals Hidden Risk Factors, U-M Team Reports

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A large new study reveals previously unknown risk factors associated with an eye condition that causes serious progressive nearsightedness at a relatively young age. The findings, made through the largest-ever clinical study of the condition called keratoconus, could help more people receive newer treatments that can slow the problem and protect their vision.

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January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month

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Over 3 million Americans and over 60 million people worldwide have glaucoma. Experts estimate that half of them don’t know they have it. Learn more about this sight-stealing disease and what you can do.

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International Study Reveals Genetic Associations That Influence Adult Onset Glaucoma

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Researchers from Massachusetts Eye and Ear/Harvard Medical School and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine have led an international effort to identify three genetic associations that influence susceptibility to primary open angle glaucoma — the most common form of adult onset glaucoma and the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the world.

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Researchers Discover Three Glaucoma-Related Genes

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An analysis funded by the National Eye Institute (NEI), part of the National Institutes of Health, has identified three genes that contribute to the most common type of glaucoma. The study increases the total number of such genes to 15.

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Certain Yoga Positions May Impact Eye Pressure in Glaucoma Patients

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Glaucoma patients may experience increased eye pressure as the result of performing several different head-down positions while practicing yoga, according to a new study published by researchers at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai (NYEE) in the journal PLOS ONE.

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Researchers Track Eye Movements to Improve Visual Searches

Researchers at New Mexico State University are mimicking high-stakes visual search scenarios in the lab to gauge performances of independent searchers and search pairs. Preliminary research showed that two heads might not always be better than one.

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High Eye Pressure and Glaucoma

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I've heard that glaucoma is caused by high eye pressure, and that left untreated glaucoma can cause blindness. At what pressure will I go blind?

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Myopia-Related Differences in Eye Structure May Help in Developing 'Customized' Intraocular Lenses

The presence of myopia, or nearsightedness, significantly affects the muscles used in focusing the lens of the eye—a finding with important implications for the development of "accommodating" implanted intraocular lenses (IOLs) that can adjust to different visual distances, reports a study in the January issue of Optometry and Vision Science, official journal of the American Academy of Optometry. The journal is published by Wolters Kluwer.

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Space Lab Technology May Help Researchers Detect Early Signs of Cataract

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As we age, proteins in the lenses of our eyes start misbehaving: They unfold and congregate in clusters that block, scatter and distort light as it passes through the lens. A cloudy area, or cataract, forms. In a new study, scientists found that throughout our lifetime, levels of a key protein decline, and may be an early warning sign of a developing cataract. The study, conducted by scientists at the National Eye Institute and the Wilmer Eye Institute of Johns Hopkins Hospital and published online in Ophthalmology, suggests that there is a window before cataracts develop when there may be time to intervene and prevent them.

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Toxic Secretions From Intracranial Tumor Damage the Inner Ear

A new study at Massachusetts Eye and Ear showed that in some cases of vestibular schwannoma, a sometimes-lethal tumor often associated with neurofibromatosis 2 (NF2), secretions from the tumor contain toxic molecules that damage the inner ear. The findings, published online in Scientific Reports, explain why some vestibular schwannomas cause hearing loss even though they are not large enough to compress nearby structures that control hearing.