Health & Wellbeing

Eye drops may be about to get much more effective

Eye drops may be about to get ...
The technology incorporates "molecular packets" which cling to the tear film that covers the eye
The technology incorporates "molecular packets" which cling to the tear film that covers the eye
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The technology incorporates "molecular packets" which cling to the tear film that covers the eye
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The technology incorporates "molecular packets" which cling to the tear film that covers the eye

Our eyes are designed to flush out any contaminants that get into them. While this is generally a good thing, it's not so helpful when it comes to administering medication in the form of eye drops – up to 95 percent of the medicine is typically flushed out before it's able to work. Now, however, a Canadian scientist is developing what could be a solution to the problem.

Working with a team of graduate students, McMaster University's Prof. Heather Sheardown has created microscopic packets of medicine that are suspended in a carrier liquid.

She tells us that when applied in the form of eye drops, these "molecular packets" adhere to the mucus layer of the tear film that covers the eye. This causes them to remain on the cornea instead of being washed away. Over the next several days, they gradually dissolve and release their payload into the eye.

Conceivably, this means that people currently needing to use eye drops on a daily basis could instead apply them once a week. Additionally, of course, it would result in less wasted medication.

According to Sheardown, there has been interest in developing the technology commercially. She will be presenting her research to the Tear Film and Ocular Surface Society in France, later this month.

Source: McMaster University via Newswise

3 comments
sidmehta
Let's hope there are no long term effects to the cornea.
pmshah
"Additionally, of course, it would result in less wasted medication. " If this is true there will be no takers in the pharma industry. Unless of course they can jack up the prices, a la "allergy shot pens" , and get away with it.
habakak
So they would sell it in smaller containers (to prevent too much stock expiry). Good. At a higher price due to it being more effective. Not good. The medical industry especially in the US know they can just charge whatever they want because everyone thinks they are entitled to the best service.