New Development Scientists develop eye drops that can cure cataract

The drops, which would be used twice a day, could be widely available within 5 years.

  • Published:
play Alamy/Telegraph
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Patients with cataracts may not need to resort to surgery soon as scientists have discovered a chemical that reduces the clouding that appears over the eye.

The drops, which would be used twice a day, could be widely available within 5 years.

United States researchers found that the chemical lanosterol, the main molecule in steroids, can break up the proteins that cloud the lens.

They tested lanosterol eye drops on elderly dogs and rabbits and found that within 6 weeks, vision had improved.

According to Dr Kang Zhang, an eye specialist from the University of California, it is hoped that the first clinical trials on humans will begin in the next one to two years.

Zhang believes that the body naturally produces lanosterol when we are younger but but that as we get older, not enough is produced to prevent cataracts from developing.

Scientists have lauded the development as an exciting one.

Cataracts are cloudy patches that develop in the lens of the eye, causing blurred or misty vision. If left untreated, all vision is lost.

There is currently no medications to prevent or reverse cataracts, except surgery.

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