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State scientists gets worldwide recognition

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, May 5 � The mechanism of cataract formation discovered by three scientists of Assam has been recognised by London-based Royal College of Ophthalmologists in their prestigious research journal Eye.

The research was conducted by a group comprising eye specialist Mir Alam Siddique of Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Basant Kumar Tiwary, scientist of the life science department of Assam University, Silchar, and Satya Bhusan Paul, a biochemist of Assam University, Silchar, a press release stated.

It must be mentioned here that the journal Eye is published by the Nature Publishing Group which is the 1st ranking publishing group for scientific journals in the world.

The press release stated that the findings were the outcome of the dedicated research carried out since 2005. The term cataract is used to describe the clouding of the natural lens of the eye. The vision dims because the cataract prevents light from passing beyond the lens and focusing on the retina. Surgery is the only way to treat a cataract till now.

According to Dr Mir this is a giant step in cataract research which will give opportunity to further research works that may lead to the invention of safe medicines to stabilise phospholipids and proteins of crystalline lenses.

It may then be possible to prevent or reverse the progression of cataract at its early stage. Medical treatment will then replace the surgical management of cataract.

�The research outcomes and the publication are great achievements and assets of Dr Mir Alam Siddique and co-scientists. In fact, it is a matter of pride to the ophthalmologists and scientists of India that an Indian ophthalmologist and scientists have given such a contribution to the world. It will inspire new generation ophthalmologists, physicians, surgeons and scientists of India to conduct research work and contribute new knowledge to the medical world,� the release stated. Cataracts are a major problem globally; 17 million people around the world are blind because of cataracts and 28,000 new cases are reported every day. Approximately 25 per cent of the population over 65 (and about 50 per cent over 80) have a serious loss of vision due to cataracts.

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