Saturday, February 25, 2017

Grapes may support ocular health

Compounds found in grapes may help protect against eye disease, according to new research led by researchers at the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. The study showed that a diet supplemented with grapes was able to counter damage from oxidative stress and preserve retinal structure and function in a laboratory model of retinal degeneration, the university said. The study was funded by the California Table Grape Commission; researchers investigated whether a diet supplemented with grapes, in the form of whole grape freeze-dried powder, would protect the photoreceptors of the retina from degeneration induced by acute oxidative stress. Mice were fed the grape-supplemented diet (corresponding to about 3 servings per day for humans), a sugar-matched control diet, or a normal chow control diet. Both retinal structure and function were preserved in the mice consuming the grape-enriched diet, where they maintained their retinal thickness, the quantity of photoreceptors, and the amount of photoreceptor activity, despite the elevated oxidative stress conditions. Conversely, in the non-grape consuming group, retinas were damaged, displaying holes and lesions, and with a significant decrease in thickness.

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