According to a recent publication in Nature Medicine an increased dietary intake of omega-3-polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) may protect against the development and progression of retinal neovascularization. The study conducted by L. Smith et al. of the Children's Hospital Boston attracts world-wide attention. In a mouse model of oxygen-induced retinopathy the researchers were able to demonstrate that neonatal mice kept on a "Japanese diet" (i.e. rich in omega-3-PUFA) developed about 50% less retinal neovascularization as compared to mice kept on a "Western diet" (rich in omega-6-PUFA).

The results are now being followed-up by a clinical study with the aim to investigate whether prematurely born infants with a high risk of developing ROP may benefit from a diet supplemented with omega-3-PUFA. In addition, the AREDS2-Study which commenced in October 2006 is examining the role of omega-3-PUFA in the development and progression of age-related macular degeneration.