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More oxygen in eyes of African-Americans may help explain glaucoma risk
Date:7/11/2011

ear grant from the National Eye Institute to further investigate that association.

Siegfried and Beebe say the next step is to extend their studies of patients and to explore the effects of elevated oxygen levels in animal models of glaucoma. They also plan to measure oxygen utilization in patients by placing a modified contact lens on the eye to measure how much oxygen is being consumed.

"It's not that older patients or African-American patients are somehow getting more oxygen into their eyes," Siegfried explains. "Rather, aging may result in lower oxygen consumption, leaving higher amounts in the eye. In contrast African-Americans may have more efficient oxygen metabolism, with the same result. The excess oxygen may result in the formation of oxygen byproducts that cause cellular damage. However, more study is required. When we understand the underlying reason for elevated oxygen and how it may damage the eye, we will be in a better position to develop ways to prevent this disease."


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Contact: Jim Dryden
jdryden@wustl.edu
314-286-0110
Washington University School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

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