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Middle East Afr J Ophthalmol. 2015 Oct-Dec;22(4):489-94. doi: 10.4103/0974-9233.167811.

Evaluation and Comparison of the Indices of Systemic Oxidative Stress among Black-Africans with Age-related Cataracts or Primary Glaucoma.

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Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria.
Department of Family Medicine, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria.
Department of Ophthalmology, Lagos State Eye Institute, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria.



Oxidative stress has been implicated in the pathophysiology of glaucoma, cataract, and many degenerative diseases. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the systemic oxidative stress in black-African patients diagnosed with primary glaucoma or age-related cataract (ARC) and compare these indices to normal control patients and between the two conditions.


This was a descriptive cross-sectional study of consecutive recruited subjects attending a tertiary care facility. One hundred adults were enrolled and sub-grouped into: Normal controls (n = 20), patients with primary glaucoma (n = 40), and patients with cataract (n = 40). The data were collected on patient demographics and clinical information. Ten milliliters of the venous blood was taken from each subject for the evaluation of serum biochemical indices of oxidative stress. Laboratory measurements of enzymatic and nonenzymic anti-oxidants, as well as lipid peroxidation, were conducted using established and validated spectrophotometric methods. The systemic oxidative stress was measured by the serum levels of anti-oxidant enzymes and lipid peroxidation, and compared between the groups and to a control group of patients.


Statistically, significantly reduced serum levels of glutathione, glutathione-S-transferase, superoxide dismutase, catalase, and ascorbic acid were found in the patients with glaucoma or cataract when compared with controls (P < 0.05 for all). Differences in serum lipid peroxidation levels across or between the groups were nonsignificant. Serum protein levels were significantly higher among the subjects with cataract or glaucoma than in controls.


Our results concur with findings in Caucasian study cohorts. This indicates that in black-Africans, primary glaucoma, and ARC are associated with increased systemic oxidative stress. This supports the existing evidence on the role of oxidative stress in these ocular disorders and reinforces the rationale for the use of anti-oxidants in the management and possible prevention of these conditions.


Anti-oxidants; Cataract; Glaucoma; Oxidative Stress

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