MILLIONS of people could be spared blindness thanks to the action of the painkillers Ibuprofen, paracetamol and the humble aspirin, according to new research from Reading University. Researchers are also investigating whether the painkillers, all members of the same anti-inflammatory drug family, could help fight multiple sclerosis and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease.
A team led by James Crabbe, head of cell division and molecular biology at the university, has discovered that Ibuprofen prevents the mutation of proteins in the eye which causes cataracts. The benefits, particularly for the third world, could be enormous. And because the painkillers act on proteins, it is possible that they could help combat diseases such as MS and CJD, which may be linked to protein malfunction.
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