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New Study Show Genetic Link for development of Glaucoma.

Researchers have discovered a genetic mark that increases the risk for the most common form of glaucoma which is primary open-angle glaucoma. This form of glaucoma is a major cause of blindness worldwide. The genetic information of more than 40,000 people in China, Sweden, the United Kingdom and Australia was analyzed. The genetic mark linked to the eye condition is located near genes CAV1 and CAV2. These genes are responsible for encoding membrane proteins which are involved in the process of glaucoma. The study revealed that Europeans who carried two copies of the the genetic mark are at a 60 percent greater risk of developing open-angle glaucoma than Europeans who did not carry it. Those in the Chinese population who carried just one copy of the genetic mark were five times more likely to develop the condition than those who did not. Since the launch of the Human Genome Project, scientists have been surprised by the even stronger role that genetics plays in many diseases than was previously realized. Genetic testing is available for macular degeneration, for example, which assesses your risk on a 5-point scale rated from lower than average to higher than average risk.* Andrea Schumann Staff Writer

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