Saffron curbs the rare and rare degenerative vision disease, Stargardt's syndrome. This is an important result from an unprecedented clinical study conducted at the A. Gemelli Irccs University Hospital Foundation and published in the journal "Nutrients". The treatment is simple and without side effects, explained Benedetto Falsini, from the Institute of Ophthalmology, who coordinates the joint work with Silvia Bisti from the University of L 'Aquila. Stargardt's disease is hereditary degeneration of the 'macula', the center of the retina.
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The symptoms are mainly in the form of reduced central vision (which allows for example recognizing faces, reading, driving), which begins in adolescence or, in any case, at a young age (the first and second decades of life). This is caused by a 'mistake' (mutation) gene 'Abca4 & # 39', which malfunctions cause dysfunction and loss of retinal cells due to neuroinflamation phenomena caused by increased oxidative stress (free radicals). The clinical trial involved 31 patients treated with saffron 20 milligrams per day in tablets for six months and then with placebo for the next six. Visual function remained stable during therapy, while it tends to worsen during placebo.
This is a new demonstration of the strong therapeutic effect of turmeric, which in the past in animal models of retinal degeneration has been shown to slow the development of retinal neurodegenerative processes and maintain visual function for longer. In humans, the efficacy of saffron treatment has been demonstrated, again by Falsini, in patients with age-related macular degeneration in the early or sufficiently advanced phase: «lOral integration with turmeric has a beneficial effect on visual function and disease progression», concluded Falsini.
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