He became an author and a vocal opponent of totalitarianism in Hungary while conducting glaucoma research in the United States.

Laszlo Z. Bito, Scientist, Novelist and Philanthropist, Dies at 87

Bito was born in Budapest in 1934, and the Hungarian communist government evicted him and his family from the city in 1951, according to the biographical timeline on his website.

Laszlo Z. Bito, Scientist, Novelist and Philanthropist, Dies at 87

He ultimately made it to the city of Komlo after being exiled, where he was made to work in the coal mines. In charge of a local uprising against such forced labour, he escaped to Austria after it was put down. He requested and was granted asylum in the US in 1956.

Laszlo Z. Bito’s Career

Bito has dedicated his life to understanding how prostaglandins (PGs) contribute to fluid buildup in the eyes of glaucoma sufferers. The optic nerve may get permanently damaged as a result of the fluid’s pressure on the eye, which could result in complete blindness.

In a 1982 publication, Bito and colleagues discovered that PGs lower intraocular eye pressure and stated that this was because of “some very basic process comparable to all animals [studied]”. Therefore, it makes sense that PGs will lower eye blood pressure.

Bito, who manufactures the drug under the trade name Xalatan, had a significant role in the development of the glaucoma eyedrop. The Times claims that Columbia University and Bito divided the millions of dollars in royalties that followed the drug’s 1997 patenting. Bito’s wealth allowed him to fund numerous artistic endeavours, like as radio stations and the music programme at Bard College.

2013 Prize for Vision Research

He received the Helen Keller Prize for Vision Research from the Helen Keller Foundation in 2013 for his research on a variety of subjects pertaining to the biology of the eye, such as its chemistry and the dynamics of its microenvironment.

He only left behind his two boys from a previous marriage, Carino and Bito.

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