There are some types of retinopathy where blood vessels grow out of proportion in the eye, which causes irreversible vision loss. Premature babies and adults with diabetes as well can be diagnosed with this condition. However, now the scientists from the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation have said that they have found a new way to treat these aberrant blood vessels in mice. They have said that they have been able to treat this condition in mice with the help of a small molecule that restricts proteins in the eye. These proteins trigger the blood vessels to grow out of proportion. This drug has been able to control the growth of abnormal blood vessels while saving healthy blood vessels. This study has been published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.
Scientists have analyzed a set of blood vessels in mice, which fade away soon after birth. While studying these blood vessels, they have found specific proteins called endothelial ETS transcription factors. These proteins reduce as those blood vessels start to withdraw. Experts have said that the proteins work like a switch in this process. They have tried to imitate the same phenomena in retinopathy models as well. Scientists have discovered a compound called YK-4-279, which reduces various ETS transcription factors. They have used this compound in their mouse model. Experts have found that it has been able to reduce the growth of abnormal blood vessels, which blocks the vision.
The study says that the compound specifically targets the abnormal blood vessels and healthy vessels in the eye have not been affected by it. Experts have claimed that retinopathy can occur in premature infants due to high oxygen levels in incubators. It obstructs the growth of healthy blood vessels as well. However, this condition gets better over time. At the same time, adults who are dealing with diabetes as well can be diagnosed with this condition, and it becomes a lifetime problem for them. It can cause irreversible loss of vision among adults.