Newly identified gene increases glaucoma risk

New research on Glaucoma has found a gene that doesn’t  care which ethnic group your from.- MDA
By: Nadia El-Awady
An international team of scientists has identified, for the first time, a glaucoma-causing gene that is consistent across ethnic groups.
Exfoliation syndrome (XFS) is a systemic disorder that manifests most clearly in the eye. It leads to accumulation of exfoliation material in the eye, impeding fluid drainage and leading to an increase in intraocular pressure. This increased pressure can lead to damage of the optic nerve and a gradual loss of vision. 

 The resulting eye condition, glaucoma, is estimated to have affected 60.5 million people in 2010. This number is expected to almost double by 2040, disproportionately affecting people in Asia and Africa.
 An international team of scientists, spanning six continents and 17 countries, has identified a new gene, CACNA1A, as a susceptibility gene for XFS. 
For many years, scientists believed that another gene, LOXL1, was the only gene responsible for the disease. But recent research has shown that LOXL1 causes protection from or risk for XFS depending on ethnic group and is not 100% consistent. Since 2007, many research groups around the world have tried to find a gene for XFS that is consistent across ethnic groups but to no avail……
The work done by the international team, which included scientists from Saudi Arabia’s King Saud University and King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, suggests consistent association of CACNA1A with XFS across Asian, European and South African ancestry groups…….
Source: nature Middle East