Fatty acid found in fish prevents age-related vision loss

May 30, 2012

An omega-3 fatty acid found in fish, known as DHA, prevented age-related vision loss in lab tests, demonstrates recently published medical research from the University of Alberta.

Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry researcher Yves Sauve and his team discovered lab models fed DHA did not accumulate a toxic molecule at the back of the eyes. The toxin normally builds up in the retina with age and causes .

"This discovery could result in a very broad therapeutic use," says Sauve, whose work was recently published in the peer-reviewed journal Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science.

"In normal aging, this toxin increases two-fold as we age. But in , there was no increase in this toxin whatsoever. This has never been demonstrated before – that supplementing the diet with DHA could make this kind of difference."

The team recently started another study, looking at people who have age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a condition that results in the loss of central vision and is the main cause of blindness in those over the age of 50. The researchers will look for DNA markers in the blood of study participants. The team wants to determine if participants with certain genetic markers will respond better to increasing amounts of DHA in their diet and if so, why.

Explore further: Low levels of omega-3 fatty acids may cause memory problems

Related Stories

Low levels of omega-3 fatty acids may cause memory problems

February 27, 2012
A diet lacking in omega-3 fatty acids, nutrients commonly found in fish, may cause your brain to age faster and lose some of its memory and thinking abilities, according to a study published in the February 28, 2012, print ...

Recommended for you

Researchers identify potential biomarkers of age-related macular degeneration

September 12, 2017
Patients with any stage of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) carry signs of the disease in their blood that may be found through special laboratory tests, according to a new study led by AMD researchers based at Massachusetts ...

Researchers unlock regenerative potential of cells in the mouse retina

August 28, 2017
Cells within an injured mouse eye can be coaxed into regenerating neurons and those new neurons appear to integrate themselves into the eye's circuitry, new research shows. The findings potentially open the door to new treatments ...

Antioxidant supplement cost saving and effective for degenerative eye disease

August 24, 2017
A supplement that combines antioxidants with zinc and copper is a relatively inexpensive and effective means of halting the progression of a certain type of degenerative eye disease, concludes research published online in ...

Researchers identify key compounds to resolve abnormal vascular growth in AMD

August 21, 2017
A compound of specific bioactive products from a major family of enzymes reduced the severity of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in a preclinical model, according to a new study led by Massachusetts Eye and Ear researchers. ...

World's blind population to soar: study

August 3, 2017
The world's blind will increase threefold from about 36 million today to 115 million in 2050 as populations expand and individuals grow ever older, researchers said Thursday.

Simulations signal early success for fractal-based retinal implants

July 27, 2017
Computer simulations of electrical charges sent to retinal implants based on fractal geometry have University of Oregon researchers moving forward with their eyes focused on biological testing.

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

tadchem
5 / 5 (1) May 30, 2012
Name that toxin!

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.