It competence be probable to provide a categorical means of permanent blindness before people notice any detriment of vision, contend University College London researchers.
They have grown a new kind of eye examination that competence mark glaucoma a decade before symptoms appear.
It uses a fluorescent color that sticks to a cells in a retina that are about to die.
But it has been tested on usually 16 people in reserve trials and distant some-more investigate is needed, a investigate says.
Glaucoma affects 60 million people around a universe and many have mislaid a third of their prophesy by a time they are diagnosed.
The illness is customarily caused by changes to a vigour inside a eye that kills a retina’s haughtiness cells.
As these cells turn stressed and sickly, they start to change their chemistry and some-more greasy structures pierce to a outward of a cell.
This is what a fluorescent dye, that is injected into a bloodstream, sticks to.
Then all an optician has to do is demeanour during a behind of a eye and if a retina is bright in white fluorescent dots afterwards a studious has a problem.
In Phase we clinical trials – a beginning form of hearing designed to check new treatments are protected – a technique could mark a disproportion between they eyes of healthy patients and those with glaucoma.
Prof Francesca Cordeiro, from a UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, told a BBC News website: “For a initial time in humans we have a examination that identifies [glaucoma] illness activity before a illness develops.
“We are presumably articulate 5 to 10 years before it would routinely be identified.”
Current treatments to control a eye’s inner vigour can stop or delayed down a course of a disease, nonetheless they can't retreat a repairs already done.
Prof Philip Bloom, from a Western Eye Hospital in London, added: “Treatment is most some-more successful when it is begun in early stages of a disease, when steer detriment is minimal.”
UCL’s study, published in a biography Brain, says some-more investigate is “clearly needed”.
The eye is not usually a window on a essence it is a window on a brain.
Animal investigate suggests neurodegenerative diseases competence be manifest in a spoil of haughtiness cells – that anatomically are simply an prolongation of a mind – too.
An eye examination would be a inexpensive approach of monitoring a course of diseases like dementia, Parkinson’s or mixed sclerosis than a mind scan.
Bethan Hughes, from a Wellcome Trust, that saved a research, said: “This creation has a intensity to renovate lives for those who humour detriment of steer by glaucoma, and offers wish of a breakthrough in early diagnosis of other neurodegenerative diseases.
“Loss of steer as we age is an impossibly formidable disability, impacting peculiarity of life and independence.”