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PRX for the eyes

eye spy

Scientists are reporting some proof for the long-standing belief that a widely used non-prescription drug in China can prevent and treat cataracts. Cataracts are a leading cause of vision loss worldwide by causing a clouding of the lens of the eye which obscures eyesight.

The study is published in Inorganic Chemistry. Tzu-Hua Wu, Fu-Yung Huang, Shih-Hsiung Wu and their colleagues found that eye drops containing pirenoxine, also known as PRX, have long been thought to help with the treatment of cataracts. People have been talking about writing about PRX for 60 years. A breakthrough would be particularly welcome since the only treatment in the West is surgical lens replacement. The lens is a clear disc inside the eye that focuses light onto the nerve tissue preparing images for the brain to interpret. Despite wide use of PRX in the East, there have been few studies to support its use.

The scientists tested the chemical on a cloudy solution that mimics a cataract. The cloudy solutions contained elements commonly found in the fluids of a cataract impaired eye. Once PRX was introduced, the cloudiness diminished by up to 38 percent. "The results may provide a rationale for using PRX as an anti-cataract agent and warrant further biological studies," the article points out.

Source: American Chemical Society, ScienceDaily


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