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New treatment for glaucoma unveiled

Researchers from NTU and the Singapore Eye Research Institute have developed a new treatment for glaucoma.

SINGAPORE: A new treatment for glaucoma may mean that patients can do away with the use of daily eye drops.

Unveiled on Tuesday (June 3), the treatment involves a painless injection to the front of the eye which delivers millions of nano-sized capsules – thousands of times smaller than a speck of dust – that release anti-glaucoma drugs slowly over six months.

Glaucoma is a condition that causes damage to the eye's optic nerve and could lead to blindness.

Jointly developed by scientists from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and the Singapore Eye Research Institute, the new therapy has undergone a pilot study with six patients. Researchers said it has yielded exceptional results, and has been both safe and effective in the treatment of glaucoma.

The new nanomedicine is also expected to benefit the elderly, who often forget to use the daily eye drops, leading to their conditions worsening.

The researchers estimated that at least 10 per cent of blindness from glaucoma is directly caused by patients not adhering correctly to prescribed medications.

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