Researchers in the United States have discovered a new therapy for people with dry eye they claim can restore natural tear film chemistry in a lasting manner.
The therapy is called Lacripep, and it has been founded by Gordon W. Laurie, an Associate Professor in Cell Biology and Ophthalmology at the University of Virginia. A/Prof. Laurie has been researching dry eye for over 25 years.
Lacripep is a proprietary synthetic fragment of lacritin, the secreted protein found in tears and saliva. While most lacritin is produced by the lacrimal gland, some is secreted by the meibomian gland and the epithelial cells of the conjunctiva and cornea. Together these epithelia comprise much of the lacrimal functional unit (LFU). Lacritin is deficient in dry eye, the most common disease of the LFU.1
According to A/Prof. Laurie, although a tear protein, lacritin helps stimulate creation of the protective three-layer tear film as it flows through tear ducts onto the surface of the eye. It also acts as a shield against inflammation-associated cell death by promoting the health of the ocular surface.
It also acts as a shield against inflammation-associated cell death
A/Prof. Laurie said preclinical studies conducted at the Nancy McNamara’s lab at the University of California, revealed a single topical dose of lacritin naturally promotes basal tearing without irritation that lasts for hours. After multiple daily doses, elevated natural basal tearing is sustained one week later.
A/Prof. Laurie also claims that by using lacripep, corneal staining is reduced to background and lacrimal gland inflammation is diminished. No other tear protein, nor dry eye drug, displays these properties.
He said Lacriprep, which is easily and safely produced from a naturally occurring ocular protein, is unique because it both increases secretion and decreases inflammation. Additionally, it may renew lacrimal tissue.
A/Prof. Laurie intends to commence preclinical through to phase three trials as soon as possible and hopes to commercialise Lacripep within five to six years. He is seeking funding to do this – find our more by visiting Australian Dry Eye: www.australiandryeye.webs.com/investors