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Journal of Integrative Medicine: Volume 11, 2013   Issue 4,  Pages: 233-240

DOI: 10.3736/jintegrmed2013037
Research advances on the usage of traditional Chinese medicine for neuroprotection in glaucoma
1. Xue-song Mi (Department of Ophthalmology, the First Affiliated Hospital, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510630, Guangdong Province, China )
2. Jing-xiang Zhong (Department of Ophthalmology, the First Affiliated Hospital, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510630, Guangdong Province, China )
3. Raymond Chuen-Chung Chang (Department of Anatomy, and the State Key Laboratory of Brain and Cognitive Science, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong, China )
4. Kwok-Fai So (Department of Anatomy, and the State Key Laboratory of Brain and Cognitive Science, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong, China E-mail: hrmaskf@hkucc.hku.hk)

ABSTRACT: Progressive loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) and their axons is the main pathogenesis of glaucoma. The cause of glaucoma is not fully understood, but the neurodegeneration of glaucoma involves many mechanisms such as oxidative stress, glutamate toxicity and ischemia/reperfusion insult. In order to target these mechanisms, multiple neuroprotective interventions have been investigated to prevent the death of RGCs. Of note are some tonic herbs from the traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) pharmacopeia that have shown neuroprotective effects in glaucoma. TCM differs from Western medicine in that TCM exhibits complicated bioactive components, triggering many signaling pathways and extensive actions on vital organs. Modern scientific approaches have demonstrated some of their underlying mechanisms. In this review, we used Lycium barbarum and Ginkgo biloba as examples to elaborate the characteristics of TCM and their potential applications in neuroprotection in glaucoma.

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Mi XS, Zhong JX, Chang RCC, So KF. Research advances on the usage of traditional Chinese medicine for neuroprotection in glaucoma. J Integr Med. 2013; 11(4): 233-240.
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