Dietary supplements of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFAs) could be effective for myopia control, according to researchers from the Ophthalmic Research Institute, at the University of Tübingen in Germany.
The researchers investigated the therapeutic effect of dietary supplements of ω-3 PUFAs on myopia progression in animal models, and on decreases in choroidal blood perfusion (ChBP) caused by near work. They found a daily intake of ω-3 PUFAs (300mg docosahexaenoic acid [DHA] plus 60mg eicosapentaenoic acid [EPA]) significantly reduced the development of form deprivation myopia in guinea pigs and mice, and lens-induced myopia in guinea pigs.
Additionally, they reported that peribulbar injections of DHA inhibited myopia progression in form-deprived guinea pigs. The suppression of myopia in guinea pigs was accompanied by inhibition of the ‘ChBP reduction–scleral hypoxia cascade’. Treatment with DHA or EPA antagonised hypoxia-induced myofibroblast transdifferentiation in cultured human scleral fibroblasts.
In human subjects, ω-3 PUFAs, taken orally, partially alleviated the near-work–induced decreases in ChBP. The researchers concluded that the studies found evidence to suggest ω-3 PUFAs are potential and readily available candidates for myopia control.
Pan M, Zhao F, Xie B, Wu H, Zhang S, Ye C, Guan Z, Kang L, Zhang Y, Zhou X, Lei Y, Wang Q, Wang L, Yang F, Zhao C, Qu J, Zhou X. Dietary ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids are protective for myopia. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 Oct 26;118(43):e2104689118. doi: 10.1073/pnas.2104689118. PMID: 34675076.