Experts for UNAM has developed contact lenses that break into the eye for a few minutes and gradually release the auxiliary medicine under conditions such as uveitis, which can lead to blindness if not treated properly. These are biodegradable lenses for inflammatory eye diseases.
This opaque film, filled with dexamethasone, allows controlled release of the active substance and a better dose for optimal recovery.
A team of scientists at the FES School, Cuautitlán, headed by José Juan Escobar Chávez, a specialist in pharmacy and pharmaceutical technology, has developed the shape and dimensions of traditional contact lenses, so its application is relatively easy; In addition, their polymers are soluble in water, disintegrate with ocular fluid and waste is released.
Uveitis is an inflammation (vascular layer of the eye), one of the causes of redness of the eye; Usually it is accompanied by baking, itching, tearing and reduced visual acuity. It is a cause of infectious agents such as bacteria, parasites, fungi and viruses, and is ineffective, such as contamination or excessive use of mobile devices.
In this connection, the university emphasized that deuveitis cases, especially in young people and children, have increased in recent years due to the way of life combined with ecological conditions and the excessive use of electronic devices. "They spend a lot of time in front of television monitors, tablets, laptops, and cell phones."
He was also responsible for the 12 Multidisciplinary Research Unit of FES Cuautitlán, said it was intended to increase the time for the drug to remain in the ocular mucus to optimize its effectiveness.
In conventional procedures such as droplets, the liquid with the active substance remains short, as it almost instantly extends through the tears and uses only five percent.
Meanwhile, lenses created in UNAM break down for a few minutes so that the dose is maximally used without the need to apply it frequently. Fua Cuautitlán has already launched a patent application for this innovation, which in 2017 received the third place of the Canifarma awards in the category of Technological Innovations.
Carlos Arturo Velázquez Tapia and Abel Esau Peña Cuevas, graduates of pharmacy, were responsible for the design, development and characterization of biodegradable polymeric lenses.
Now, along with graduate Karle Stella Constantino, they develop laboratory eye inserts for veterinary use (for dogs), also with dexamethasone. "We have already characterized the pharmaceutical form, we will test it first in rabbits and then in dogs," concluded Escobar Chávez.