Mysteries of myopia may soon become clear

A study aims to find genes that make us short-sighted and may reveal why so many people of Asian descent are affected. Photo: Dickson Lee

Two professors are hoping to discover why Asians are nearly three times more likely to be short-sighted than Westerners. They are taking part in a global study which has revealed that both groups share similar myopic-related genes. And they say the data will lead towards the development of genetic tests for short-sightedness, clinically known as myopia.

Monday, 3 June, 2013, 6:22am


There's a tidal wave of myopia sweeping across Hong Kong and other East Asian countries, and the lack of time spent outdoors is thought to be a major cause.

8 May 2012 - 12:00am

Outdoor play helps kids see the point

Twelve-year-old Megan Lim does not have much time to play outdoors. The bespectacled girl used to go cycling or rollerblading at least once a week when she was eight, but she stopped after her homework increased dramatically.

13 Dec 2011 - 12:00am

Future looks bright for the short-sighted

Short-sighted schoolchildren, of whom there are many in Hong Kong, can look forward to a brighter, clearer future.

Polytechnic University researchers have come up with a contact lens that can halve the speed at which short-sightedness, or myopia, gets worse.

18 May 2011 - 12:00am

New lens halves myopia progression

Researchers at Polytechnic University have developed a contact lens that halves the inevitable progression of short-sightedness from childhood.

17 May 2011 - 12:00am

Computer games link to rising myopia in young

Academic pressure and computer games combined with misconceptions about wearing glasses are to blame for a rise in the number of short-sighted children, eye specialists say.

An online survey by Chinese University and the Project Vision Charitable Foundation found 43.1 per cent of 1,965 primary school pupils had myopia - up from the 36.1 per cent recorded 10 years ago.

16 Mar 2011 - 12:00am

The invention of glasses

Seeing double

Poor eyesight is not a problem for today. But imagine what it must have been like long ago.

In ancient times, people tried to find ways to magnify things and make them appear bigger.

In ancient Rome, for example, scholars with bad eyes looked through a glass bowl water to read. The water magnified the words.

22 Feb 2010 - 12:00am

Genetic factor raises risk of myopia

More than half the local population vulnerable, study finds

More than half of all Chinese in Hong Kong are believed to be genetically vulnerable to myopia, a study has found.

About 80 per cent of young adults in the city suffer from myopia or near-sightedness.

12 Jun 2006 - 12:00am

Lens offers hope for myopia sufferers

Optical breakthrough by Polytechnic University team means the problem can be tackled without resorting to surgery

Researchers from Polytechnic University say they have developed a lens that could cure myopia, or shortsightedness, without the need for surgery.

15 Jun 2005 - 12:00am

Focus on children's eyesight

A programme of free eye tests and eye-care seminars was launched yesterday in an attempt to raise awareness of the potential problems children face.

Hong Kong children have the highest rate of myopia, or short-sightedness, in the world - double that in Canada and the United States, according to a survey conducted by Chinese University.

8 Sep 2003 - 12:00am

Myopia patient claims negligence

A patient has filed a District Court writ claiming unspecified damages from eye surgeon Gordan Chau Kwok-on for allegedly harming her cornea during a laser operation to correct myopia. Zikey Wong Sin-man accuses Dr Chau of negligence during the operation on December 17, 1999.

15 Dec 2002 - 12:00am


A survey by Chinese University shows that half of Hong Kong schoolchildren aged 12 and above are short-sighted, giving the territory one of the worst rates of myopia in the world. The rate of short-sightedness is double that of Canada and the US and comparable to Taiwan and Singapore. More than than 7,500 schoolchildren aged five to 16 were examined for the survey.

30 Nov 2002 - 12:00am

Short-sightedness in SAR children linked to their race

Ethnic Chinese children are more likely to develop short-sightedness regardless of their school workloads, according to a study released yesterday.

But scientists say it is too early to conclude that genetic make-up is behind the findings and will have to carry out more research to find out how much of the problem is caused by the environment.

11 Nov 2002 - 12:00am

Families shun plan to study myopic children

Researchers are trying to recruit nearly 300 families with short-sighted children for a wide-ranging study aimed at finding out the role played by genetics in myopia among Chinese.

So far, Hong Kong Polytechnic University has recruited just 10 families since the programme began six months ago, its optometry and radiography assistant professor, Dr Carly Lam Siu-yin, said.

25 Oct 2000 - 12:00am

Advertising campaign produces mass myopia

UPS covers the world and now it covers the MTR.

I don't like the recent use of the world's most beautiful transportation system as a rolling billboard, but as a future stockholder I try to sympathise with the economics of the situation.

26 Sep 2000 - 12:00am