ABN – A new drug administered as a simple eye drop could one day save more than 500,000 Africans from blindness every year.
Scientists have found that a naturally occurring molecule called lanosterol shrank cataracts when it was administered to dogs via eye drops.
It has yet to be tested on humans but there appears to be a good chance that this simple eye drop could replace the need for surgery, which is far more difficult to administer to all the cataracts sufferers that need it.
Cataracts form when the proteins making up the lens of the eye become opaque and are the leading form of blindness in African people, with 600,000 people becoming cataract-blind every year.
Surgery is currently the only remedy, and while it is not a particularly complicated procedure, it is too expensive for many Africans to afford – not to mention invasive, frightening and requiring of a hospital visit.