Ginkgo supplement suppresses steroid-induced ocular hypertension

December 17, 2008

Gingko biloba extract (GBE) has an application in preventing steroid-induced ocular hypertension, according to study results published in the December issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

Gingko biloba extract (GBE) has an application in preventing steroid-induced ocular hypertension, according to study results published in the December issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

Li-Yun Jia, PhD of the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong and colleagues treated rabbits four times daily with topical TobraDEX (Alcon) and/or GBE 5 µg for 14 days. Intraocular pressure (IOP) was measured at three day intervals; the trabecular meshwork and extracellular matrix were enucleated, and cellularity and deposition graded.

GBE suppressed IOP increases caused by steroid application, and improved the cellularity of the trabecular meshwork. Applying GBE to cultured human trabecular meshwork cells inhibited the effects of the steroid: GBE attenuated apoptosis induced by anti-Fas ligands, reduced expression of myocilin and modulated the expression of stress-related genes heat-shock proteins 70 and 90, as well as the expression of B-crystallin.

As GBE proved a safe and effective means of preventing steroid-induced ocular hypertension in both an animal model and in human cells in vivo, the researchers concluded that this herbal compound could potentially be used as a dietary supplement used to prevent this type of hypertension.