Melatonin as a therapeutic tool in ophthalmology: implications for glaucoma and uveitis
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Several lines of evidence support the view that increased free radical generation and altered nitric oxide (NO) metabolism play a role in the pathogenesis of highly prevalent ocular diseases, such as glaucoma and uveitis. Data are discussed indicating that melatonin, being an efficient antioxidant that displays antinitridergic properties, has a promising role in the treatment of these ocular dysfunctions. Melatonin synthesis occurs in the eye of most species, and melatonin receptors are localized in different ocular structures. In view of the fact that melatonin lacks significant adverse collateral effects even at high doses, the application of melatonin could potentially protect ocular tissues by effectively scavenging free radicals and excessive amounts of NO generated in the glaucomatous or uveitic eye.
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