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A round-up of the eye-related hot topics that have been trending on social media over the last few weeks.


#whoopigoldberg #presbyopia #bionic

Whoopi Goldberg made a name for herself in blockbusters such as the Oscar-winning Ghost and Sister Act. She is also well known for rocking her stylish choice of eyewear. In a recent episode of the daytime talk show The View, Goldberg ditched her iconic glasses after having worn them for almost 28 years. She revealed that she recently underwent eye surgery for presbyopia. Despite saying it was not cataract surgery, it sounds as though it could have been, as she was quoted saying she had “teeny tiny cataracts” and the natural lens was removed and replaced by a lens that was “kinda like my eyeglass lens” [1,2].

#jeremyrenner #snowploughaccident

Jeremy Renner has opened up about his traumatic accident on New Year’s Day where he was left in critical condition after being crushed by a snowplough. In his first interview with Diane Sawyer on ABC, the Avengers star shared in gruesome detail how his eyeball “popped out” after the incident. “I believe I could see my eye with my other eye,” Renner told Sawyer. The heroics of Hawkeye had saved his nephew’s life, who the snowplough was directly hurdling towards. “He’s gonna get sandwiched by [the snowplough] and the truck, so I try to jump back in the dang thing to disengage it,” Renner recalled, but he was hurled forwards and under the machine. Renner bravely added that he would “do it all again”. You can watch the video clip of Renner’s interview on ABC [3]. Jeremy Renner: The Diane Sawyer Interview – A Story of Terror, Survival and Triumph is out now on Hulu and Disney Plus.

#syfovre #dryamd #geographicatrophy

SYFOVRE, pegcetacoplan eye injection, has been approved for the first and only treatment of geographic atrophy secondary to age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Geographic atrophy is a chronic and progressive degeneration of the macular, considered the advanced form of dry AMD. The novel drug manufactured by Apellis Pharmaceuticals has been found to reduce the rate of geographic atrophy progression. The approval of SYFOVRE is based on results from clinical trials OAKS (n = 621) and DERBY (n = 637). These are Phase 3, multicentre, randomised, double-masked studies comparing the efficacy and safety of SYFOVRE with sham injections in patients with geographic atrophy. It was found that both monthly and every-other-month SYFOVRE reduced the rate of geographic atrophy lesion growth through 24 months [4]. The most common adverse effects reported were ocular discomfort, neovascular AMD, vitreous floaters and conjunctival haemorrhage. A marketing authorisation application for SYFOVRE is under review by the European Medicines Agency with a decision expected in early 2024 [5].

#Octopustrial #MS #opticneuritis

Optic neuritis is a common presenting symptom of multiple sclerosis (MS). Not everyone with optic neuritis will develop MS, but the risk is higher in those with one or more typical demyelinating lesions on MRI at baseline [6]. The Octopus trial for MS is heralded as a groundbreaking trial due to its design. It is multi-arm and multi-stage, the first time it has been done in MS, meaning that new treatments can be tested faster, as multiple drugs can be tested simultaneously, and incorporating the flexibility to discontinue drugs that appear to have no effect and adding new drugs as they are discovered. Furthermore, the trial is including patients who are often excluded from such trials, that is, patients over 70 years, and with advanced MS who cannot walk. The other interesting thing about this trial is that the first two drugs to be tested are drugs in existence for other reasons, and repurposing them to see whether they have an effect on generating myelin. These are metformin, a diabetes drug, and a high-dose alpha-lipoic acid, which is a food supplement and antioxidant. It is being run by Professor Chataway from the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery UCLH. Prof Chataway believes that MS patients should not only have immunomodulating drugs to halt or slow disease progression, but also have therapeutic options to help remyelinate, which would repair or stop nerve damage [7,8].

#cockeyesquid #mismatchedeyes

Cockeye squid float between two worlds. One is the deep sea, dark and sunless, and the other is the surface ocean, where sunlight filters dimly through. Their mismatched eyes allow them to view both worlds simultaneously. The one viewing the surface grows rapidly with a bright yellow lens to filter out background light and overcome camouflage of other animals who glow to blend into the blue background of the sea. This eye is highly sensitive and scans the surface for food or predators. The other eye remains smaller, and aims downwards to the deep dark ocean, scanning for flashes of glowing animals. The other fascinating aspect of this animal are the ruby red spots covering its body, visible only when ultraviolet light is shone on it. These red spots are photophores, light-emitting organs, and glow blue when the squid swims in its natural habitat, as there is no UV light there. The purpose of these photophores is unknown, but thought to function as a disguise, a form of communication or a way to attract mates [9].






4. Goldberg R, Heier JS, Wykoff CC, et al. Efficacy of intravitreal pegcetacoplan in patients with geographic atrophy (GA): 12-month results from the phase 3 OAKS and DERBY studies. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2022;63(7):1500.





[All articles last accessed April 2023].




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Liam YN Wong

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, UK.

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