New Method For Glaucoma Detection

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Active ImageAn Iranian oculist has developed a new biochemical marker for detecting glaucoma, the eye disease that leads to blindness.

Dr. Alireza Qafarieh said that the detection of “normal tension glaucoma” is difficult because the internal pressure of eye is normal but shows glaucoma symptoms.
He introduced the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF)--a kind of protein which is a nerve growth factor--as a biochemical marker for detecting the eye disease. It is found in the brain and the periphery. BDNF helps enhance retinal ganglion cell survival.

Qafarieh noted that the level of BDNF in tears of patients is less than in healthy people, according to researches on patients with normal tension glaucoma.

The BDNF marker can be measured in a drop of tear by using the ELISA method.
“This helps recognize the disease before the destruction of the vision nerve,” he said.
Qafarieh said the biomarker was registered in United States Patent and Trademark Office as “BDNF as biomarker in glaucoma”, and published in optometry magazine of American Academy of Ophthalmology, in November 2009.

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