Recently, Dr. Jin Yuan and his colleagues at Zhongshan Ophthalmic Center, Sun Yat-sen University has published a significant finding on novel nanoparticle hydrogel contact lenses treating fungal keratitis, with a title “A Hydrogel-based Hybrid Theranostic Contact Lens for Fungal Keratitis” on ACS (American Chemical Society) Nano, which is a leading and authoritative journal known as “High quality, High impact” in chemistry with an impact factor of 12.88 scores. Jin Yuan and Gangbiao Jiang from South China Agricultural University are the co-corresponding authors.
Fungal keratitis is a very serious ocular disease that often causes ocular morbidity and blindness, which prevalence has a clearly increasing trend in recent years with frequent and chronic use of topical corticosteroids, the rapid emergence of antimicrobial drug resistance and extended-wear contact lens. Current therapies against fungal keratitis are mostly inefficient due to numerous factors, including the absence of an ideal form of sustained release and drug insensitivity and resistance. Therefore, it is urgent to find a more effective drug delivery system once the diagnosis of fungal keratitis is confirmed clinically.
(Figure from Professor Jin Yuan)
After a 3-year research was completed which is led by Professor Jin Yuan and Gangbiao Jiang, a hybrid hydrogel-based contact lens comprising voriconazole, quaternized chitosan, silver nanoparticles and graphene oxide have been developed. This sustained drug delivery system was designed as contact lenses with softness and flexibility and capable of adhering easily to the cornea and exhibited excellent cyto-compatibility and outstanding antimicrobial activity in vitro and in vivo. The contact lens showed excellent efficiency in antifungal functions, and is promising in the applications of therapeutic contact lenses and development of ophthalmic dosage form.