A team of researchers have discovered a new and safer way to manage eye injuries for the first time.
Dr. David Eppley and colleagues at the University of Birmingham say their discovery could lead to new ways to treat serious eye injuries in people, including people with traumatic injuries, who suffer chronic pain from a traumatic event.
According to the study, published in the journal Science, the protein tyrosine kinase (TK) is an important enzyme in eye tissues that are vulnerable to injury, which could mean it could be a potential treatment for severe eye injuries.
The researchers believe the enzyme may be able to “fix” damaged areas of the eye, helping restore vision.
It could also reduce inflammation that causes eye problems, such as conjunctivitis, by slowing the progression of the disease, they said.
Eppley, a professor of ophthalmology at the university and co-author of the study along with Dr. John Houghton, said the study provides the first direct evidence that the enzyme plays a role in healing damage from a severe eye injury.
He said the new study also provided evidence that TK can be used to treat acute injuries to the eye in humans, as well as the treatment of other conditions.TK is known to be involved in the repair of damaged eyes, including damage caused by trauma and diseases, but the enzyme is rarely found in humans.
Dr Houghtons research showed that patients with cataracts in their eyes showed significant improvement in their vision with TK treatment.
However, it is not clear if the enzyme can repair damage from the eye itself.
Eppyley said he believes the findings could help explain why TK appears to be more common in the eyes of people with cataclysms than other types of trauma.
Treatment options may include eye drops, topical ointments, injections, or surgery.
Houghton said it was not clear how the enzyme would work in humans and that the study was an early step in understanding how it works in the eye.
“It’s a very promising area and we hope to follow it up with larger studies,” he said.
However Eppleys work also provides a promising way to combat the growth of chronic eye diseases in humans by helping to prevent the development of inflammatory conditions such as psoriasis and cataract.
In the future, EppLEY said his group will be investigating how to develop a drug that would target TK, as the enzyme has been shown to play an important role in treating eye conditions in people.
“I think this will be an area where we can go from this to a drug,” he added.