Dr. Ron’s Research Review – January 27, 2016

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This week’s research review focuses on bilberry for cataracts, retinopathy and myopia.

A study published in Italy found that bilberry extract (180 mg twice daily of a 25-percent anthocyanoside extract) given with vitamin E, demonstrated arrested cataract formation in 48 of 50 patients with senile cortical cataracts. (Bravetti, 1989)

Another double-blind study published in Italy included 14 patients with diabetic and/or hypertensive retinopathy that were supplemented with bilberry extract equivalent to 115 mg anthocyanosides daily (or placebo) for one month. Significant improvements were observed in the ophthalmoscopic parameters of 11 subjects receiving bilberry, and 12 patients showed improvement in angiographic parameters. (Perossini et al., 1987)

A recent study published in the Journal of Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics examined 30 eyes of 30 middle-aged healthy volunteers with myopia who were randomly assigned to fermented bilberry extract (400 mg/day for 1 month) or placebo. Only the right eyes were tested. The mean amplitude of accommodation increased significantly, from 4.62±1.88 D before treatment, to 5.33±2.03 D after treatment in the study group (Wilcoxon signed-rank test, P=0.002). Moreover, the mesopic under the log contrast sensitivity function (AULCSF) was significantly increased, from 1.04±0.16 before, to 1.13±0.17 after, treatment (P=0.009). However, we found no significant changes in accommodation or AULCSF in the control group (P>0.05), or any significant changes in any other parameters in either group (P>0.05). The present data show that fermented bilberry extract is effective in causing increases in subjective accommodation and in mesopic CS in myopic eyes. (Kamiya et al., 2013)

Dr. Ron


Articles

 

Preventive medical treatment of senile cataract with vitamin E and anthocyanosides: clinical evaluation
            (Bravetti, 1989) Download
Bilberry extract (180 mg twice daily of a 25-percent anthocyanoside extract) was given with vitamin E, demonstrated arrested cataract formation in 48 of 50 patients with senile cortical cataracts.

Effect of fermented bilberry extracts on visual outcomes in eyes with myopia: a prospective, randomized, placebo-controlled study.
            (Kamiya et al., 2013) Download
PURPOSE:  To investigate clinically the effects of yeast-fermented bilberry extract on visual outcomes in myopic eyes. METHODS:  In a prospective, randomized, placebo-controlled, cross-over study, we examined 30 eyes of 30 middle-aged healthy volunteers (mean age±standard deviation, 39.5±7.2 years) with myopia [manifest spherical equivalent, -2.40±1.88 diopters (D)], who were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 oral regimens: fermented bilberry extract (400 mg/day) or placebo. We quantitatively assessed visual acuity, refraction, pupil constriction rate, accommodation, and mesopic contrast sensitivity (CS), before and 1 month after treatment. Only the right eyes were tested. The amplitude of accommodation and CS were measured with an accommodometer (D'ACOMO; WOC) and a CS unit (VCTS-6500; Vistech), respectively. From the CS, the area under the log contrast sensitivity function (AULCSF) was calculated. RESULTS:  The mean amplitude of accommodation increased significantly, from 4.62±1.88 D before treatment, to 5.33±2.03 D after treatment in the study group (Wilcoxon signed-rank test, P=0.002). Moreover, the mesopic AULCSF was significantly increased, from 1.04±0.16 before, to 1.13±0.17 after, treatment (P=0.009). However, we found no significant changes in accommodation or AULCSF in the control group (P>0.05), or any significant changes in any other parameters in either group (P>0.05). CONCLUSIONS:  The present data show that fermented bilberry extract is effective in causing increases in subjective accommodation and in mesopic CS in myopic eyes.


 

Diabetic and hypertensive retinopathy therapy with Vaccinium myrtillus anthocyanosides (Tegens®): Double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial
            (Perossini et al., 1987) Download
In a double-blind study, 14 patients with diabetic and/or hypertensive retinopathy were supplemented with bilberry extract equivalent to 115 mg anthocyanosides daily (or placebo) for one month. Significant improvements were observed in the ophthalmoscopic parameters of 11 subjects receiving bilberry, and 12 patients showed improvement in angiographic parameters.

 

 

References

Bravetti, G (1989), ‘Preventive medical treatment of senile cataract with vitamin E and anthocyanosides: clinical evaluation’, Ann Ottalmol Clin Ocul, PubMedID:
Kamiya, K, et al. (2013), ‘Effect of fermented bilberry extracts on visual outcomes in eyes with myopia: a prospective, randomized, placebo-controlled study.’, J Ocul Pharmacol Ther, 29 (3), 356-59. PubMedID: 23113643
Perossini, M, et al. (1987), ‘Diabetic and hypertensive retinopathy therapy with Vaccinium myrtillus anthocyanosides (Tegens®): Double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial’, Ann Ottalmol Clin Ocul, PubMedID: